Sixteen-year-old rising hip hop artist Reema Major, currently working on her debut album for G7/Universal Music Canada and Cherrytree/Interscope in the U.S., doesn’t remember much about her life in Sudan. She was just a toddler when her mother had the opportunity to come to Canada in 1998 with her six siblings.
“My mom is from the South, which is now its own independent country, but when she tells me about my early days, it was really a struggle,” Major tells www.samaritanmag.com. “We lived in a one bedroom shack in Kenya and Uganda and we were really struggling, so she was trying to get out of the country 10 years even prior to when I was born.
“So when she got the call for us to leave the country, it was like a Hallelujah, thank you God, praise Jesus. She was the first Sudanese women to be able to leave the country like that with seven kids and no support of a man. So it was a struggle: everything — the poverty, the one meal a day — things I can’t even really comprehend.”
Major was too little to remember that part of her life, but it still made an impact on her and shaped who she is today. Her full-length mixtape, I Am Legend, provides some glimpses as to her background, particularly in the opening lines to the song “Father.”
“Dear father today I was told that I am a refugee / Does that mean I can’t be who I am destined to be? / The little girl in my class says she’s smarter than me / Cause immigrants come from the other side of the sea … Love you dad keep me safe no nightmares and Amen /Those were my prayers around the age of 6.”
* Samaritanmag.com is an online magazine covering the good deeds of individuals, charities and businesses.