100% Ramengvrl: slurp up Asia’s hottest hip-hop artist
She’s been bulldozing the Indonesian rap scene with her audacious bars and raw energy. Now she’s ready to take to the States and beyond.
Ramengvrl’s Twitter bio states bluntly: “Some say i rap, but i only care bout makin dope shit.” The Indonesian musician knows how to chop a bar, but she doesn’t let it define her. Part hip-hop hustler, part astute poet, the artist also known as Putri Soeharto is making tunes that embody her no-fucks-given attitude. It’s a spirit that helped her break through the country’s male-dominated rap sphere, even earning her a NET TV Indonesian Choice Award nomination for Breakthrough Artist of the Year in 2018.
The 27-year-old’s rise began when she uploaded a couple of demos to SoundCloud in 2013, which attracted loads of label attention. She made the decision to release her first two tracks independently. A move that paid off, with popular Indonensian artists Dipha Barus, Matter Mos and Ariel Nayaka all reaching out off the back of these tunes.
Ramengvrl put out her debut mixtape, no bethany, in 2019. The peppery body of work sees her rap about haters being “soft like tofu” (what’s ur problem) and her unstoppable workflow (I’m always workin’ even when I’m not/Please don’t compare me to none of those thots – i make time) with bullet-like precision, soundtracked by a trap-twinged, hip-hop beat.
With a second project set to drop later this year via Empire, we gave the rising star the 100% treatment. Read on for her ultimate pet peeve, a piece of advice that changed her life and an insight into her typical day at work…
10%: Where were you born, where were you raised and where are you now based?
Jakarta, Jakarta, Jakarta.
20%: At what point did you realise you’d be able to do what you love for a living?
When I was about to get to the office and just [felt] like “what the fuck am i doing with my life”. It was four years ago.
30%: What’s a piece of advice that changed your life?
“How in the hell could a man enjoy being awakened at 8:30 a.m. by an alarm clock, leap out of bed, dress, force-feed, shit, piss, brush teeth and hair, and fight traffic to get to a place where essentially you made lots of money for somebody else and were asked to be grateful for the opportunity to do so?”
40%: What kind of emotions and experiences influence your work?
A lot, but usually it’s either when I’m sad, or when I just got my paycheck. On second thought I rarely get sad, I just get super anxious a lot of the time, and that’s when I observe and think about shit a lot.
50%: What can you tell us about your next project?
It’s gonna speak to a lot of people, especially the people in the region. And by region I mean Asia. Asia’s on the rise. I record everything in the US, so that’s new I guess.
60%: Break down your typical day at work…
I rarely work. Or I work all the time haha. It really is a blur. I wake up and all I think about is work. Chat with the manager, thinking about what I do next, call my mom (I’m about to make a company with her). When I’m done or need some pick-me-up I just play Persona or learn Japanese.
70%: What can artists do to help save the world?
Rather than save the world I think an artist can definitely save a person. I can’t get into the technicalities, but Kanye and Utada Hikaru songs have helped me through a lot.
80%: Love, Like, Hate?
Love staying at home and doing nothing. Like eating good food with good company. Hate “business people” telling you why “it won’t work”.
90%: Finish the sentence: Dear Diary, Today I…
Attended an event where materialism and a strong attachment to brands oozed big time. Nothing wrong with that, but do these people really spend that much money for a pair of sneakers? Nothing wrong with that, but isn’t he still renting?
100%: Biggest pet peeve?
When someone cuts me off when I’m talking.