Here I Am: Taz Da Realist
When your stage name is inspired by the Tasmanian Devil, you’d better be able to back it up.
Taz Da Realist is the type of person who can do just that. “Well my name obviously comes from the Looney Tunes character, but it was also a nickname that was given to me by friends. Being that all I do is tear up things and leave a mess when it comes to music, and my supporters always say my lyrics are the realest. So I put them together and here I am; Taz Da Realist.”
My city is my style. Anywhere I go I make sure that I represent Houston. We love music and everybody comes here to see why we’re so chill.
Taz has embraced her uniqueness and makes no apologies for being herself. She explains, “I’m not your normal female artist. With me, you get my words, my life, my struggle. If you’re only listening to me because I’m half naked I really don’t want you to hear what I have to say.” Her personality is laid back but goofy, and she is hard working but also family oriented. She is the type of person who wants to inspire and affect change in her listeners. She has had her own battles and struggles with depression and anxiety, and wants to let her audience know that everyone has issues, but what’s more important is to have a strong support system to help you overcome them. “I want to let others know that what they go through alone and they feel that no one understands, that there is someone out here th
at share those same stories.”
I’m not your normal female artist. Most people want the heels and dress and sex appeal. With me, you get my words, my life, my struggle. If you’re only listening to me because I’m half naked I really don’t want you to hear what I have to say.
Taz started off with music as a hobby playing with lyrics and music until five years ago when she and a friend created a song that got a lot of positive feedback.”I was playing around with music until I did a song with a good friend of mine and it got so many hits and it just went from there. I always had supporters tell me that I helped then get through something because of my lyrics alone so I kept sharing my story.”
I always had supporters tell me that I helped then get through something because of my lyrics alone so I kept sharing my story.
The Houston artist is influenced mostly by Da Brat, T.I., and Missy Elliot. She continues to perfect her sound to present an original sound every time. “I would say my music has value. It’s not the same repeated lyrics you hear with every artist. I speak about life situations.” With her speaking from her heart, she has discovered that she has had an influence on her listeners and she enjoys touching people she has never met with her music. Because of her relatability, she has had much success with gaining new fans. She has had several memorable moments in her career, but none more defining so far as her gaining a wider fan base. She is proud of her growth in moving from a strictly LGBT audience to expanding her fan base to all types of listeners. “Breaking out of the LGBT field now I have more male supporters and more straight fans.”
Taz Da Realist sets the example for us that we can be ourselves and have success in whatever field we choose in life. She wants to leave her stamp on the game by letting anyone who will listen know that authenticity is key. “I affect future generation by standing up and letting them know that you don’t have to change who you are to do what you want to do and go where you want to go. Never pretend to be something you’re not just to make it. Stay true to who you are.”
Never pretend to be something you’re not just to make it. Stay true to who you are.”
Taz Da Realist currently has new project buzzing around the city titled Murk Season which was released December 2015 and is available everywhere. She plans to drop another project in September this year so stay tuned to FYI Houston for more.
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“I want to do music until my casket drops.” Twenty-two year old Shaquille Kalikeller Pettaway, also known as Ztro (pronounced Stro) is a Gulfport, Mississippi-rooted, Detroit,