Despite a rich history of storytelling across rap and hip-hop’s many regions and subgenres, somewhere along the way the art of storytelling got lost. Rappers are still telling tales, but storytelling is no longer the main measure of a rapper’s skill. Modern rap seems to rely heavily on vibe, and simple hype-filled anecdotes. This is because most follow similar trends, have the same experiences, and nothing new to add to the daily discourse. However, every so often, the art of good storytelling re-emerges, as someone comes along that has experienced life-changing events, and this is usually a good thing…for the listener. This can also be a visceral and cleansing process for the artist.
Comatose Red Ivy is not your usual rapper. Not even close. She is a prototype, built on a template of love, hate, drugs, murder, death, rebirth and revenge. Strictly in that order. Comatose Red Ivy is a transgender rapper, singer and songwriter.
She began her music career on exactly October 16 2020 at 5:43am, after being poisoned by, whom she calls, her ‘ex-not-boyfriend’, and left to die. However, she managed to survive the forced overdose, and has been planning her retribution even since.
In the meantime, her passion for the microphone was awakened and Comatose Red Ivy has since completed 600+ songs in five months. A rough calculation results in more or less 4 songs per day. That sounds like a killer work ethic, or a deadly serious devotion.
Comatose Red Ivy works outside of the box, though heavily inspired by Mac Miller, she draws on influences that reach as far afield as Nirvana, Snoop Dogg, Violent Femmes, Randy Travis, Bob Segar, Taylor Swift, Tool and Elvis.
Comatose Red Ivy even admits to have listened to the Beatles and the Doors from her mother’s womb. “My music has no rules, no bars other than the bars used for bar-ology that are set, no expectations not even a single thought beyond a topic or story line,” states the artist. And her EP ‘COMATOSE UP IN SMOKE’, gives us the measure of that statement, as Comatose Red Ivy freestyles her way through 5 stoner-filled stories.
The rapper, who openly refers to herself as a ‘tranny-faggot’ dives in deep from the get-go, with “FO20 FO20 (420 FREESTYLE)”. Her androgynous voice is extremely capable of switching tones and nuances, taking on characters and personalities that enhance the vivid narratives. This is where her storytelling prowess comes alive and becomes the focus of each song. Line after line, you get lost in the mesmeric verbiage.
Regardless of good the thump of the percussion feels on “HITS FROM BONG (CYPRESS FREESTYLE)”, you are instantly drawn to the vocal delivery, as Comatose Red Ivy weaves her tales of weed though snippets of her life experiences.
There is a major difference between telling a story, and storytelling. The first case, is a function, the second case is an art-form, one which Comatose Red Ivy weaves learned to dominate rather convincingly.
Moving forward, Comatose Red Ivy works her way through “LL COOLJ (DOIN IT WILD FREESTYLE)”, “LL COOLJ (DOIN IT WILD FREESTYLE)” and “LL COOLJ (DOIN IT WILD FREESTYLE)”.
Each of these tracks bring a different perspective of the rapper’s insightful and poignant mindset, linked to the smoker’s experiences with Mary Jane. Comatose Red Ivy is so specific with her imagery and interpretational with her vocal delivery, it’s almost like listeners are watching every event unfold in real-time. It’s masterful.