By John Stein
“’Bad Bitch Alert’ is an anthem of self-love,” proclaims the queer hip hop artist PrettiBoiRoq of his new track, the first since his 2018 sophomore album, Haus of Ken. It is a collaboration with trans rapper Chanel Jole, where the two encourage listeners to live life unapologetically and without reserve.
“I want ‘Bad Bitch Alert’ to be blasting from the speakers while kids are in the bathroom getting ready for the club or in the car on their way to work,” he continues. “I hope it instantly boosts their egos and reminds them that whatever obstacles block their way, they will overcome because they, too, are bad bitches.”
PrettiBoiRoq grew up in a tiny town in North Carolina. After his mother succumbed to addiction, his parents divorced and he was raised by his religious dad and step mother. He recalls being picked on a lot for the clothes that he wore and for being gay. “I moved out of the house as soon as I turned 18 because I was desperate to leave my hometown behind.”
He is now in Los Angeles, living the lifestyle from 2Pac and Dr. Dre’s ‘California Love.’ Well, not quite, but almost. We caught up with him at his LA recording studio to learn more.
Who’s the badder bitch, PrettiBoiRoq or Chanel Jole?
We are both bad bitches in our own right, and I think that reflects in our own unique style and approach to music. Chanel is one of the most talented people I have ever worked with, and she really brought out my Bad Bitch energy in the booth and on set.
How did you two come together on “Bad Bitch Alert”?
We had been following each other on socials for a while. At about the time she wrapped “Taser in My Teflar Bag”, her project with Cazwell and Trace Lysette, I sent her the beat to what would become “Bad Bitch Alert”.
Do you have a favorite Chanel Jole song?
The girl snaps on everything! She killed on “What’s Next,” her track with Taylor XO, but right now, I am bumping hardest to “Clout Chasin.” One thing about Chanel is anything she records will leave you gagged.
Who are some of your inspirations?
Anyone who knows me knows that Nicki Minaj is my biggest inspiration. She is one of the greatest to ever do it, male or female! I love a lot of the southern rappers as well, like Ludacris, T.I., and Trina. East coast is where I’m from and I’ll always rep the dirty south, even in Los Angeles.
What is your favorite song that you have ever written?
I am actually working on a track about my recent separation from my partner that I cannot wait to put out, but my favorite released track would probably be “Haus of Ken”. Lyrically, I was in my element and I still cackle at some of the bars in that track.
Who is the most under and over rated rapper on the scene today?
Underrated is, without a doubt, BIA or Doechii. Both them girls got bars for days and still haven’t had their chance to really shine! Overrated would be, oh God, I’ll probably get attacked for this one, but Jack Harlow or G-Eazy. They just don’t do it for me.
Would you go for a cocktail with Kanye West?
Are you serious? I have so many questions for that man! So many questions. Anyone who says they wouldn’t is lying to you. Just to be a fly on the wall alone would be fascinating and probably mortifying at the same time.
Who is someone you follow on Instagram that might surprise fans?
Honestly there isn’t anyone that shocking on my Instagram that I can think of. There are a couple people I collaborated with that I found out later had very different political views, but I never bothered to unfollow them and I won’t give them the time of day by naming them.
Ok, time for some hard-hitting questions. What was your favorite cartoon as a child?
Probably X-Men. The Marvel Universe, with all of the fantastical people doing amazing things, really helped me escape a lot of the issues I had in my childhood.
Have you ever been arrested?
Oh okay, we are going there. Well, yes, actually, I have been arrested three times. All are public record if anyone can find out my real name.
What kind of car do you drive?
I recently traded in my Audi for a Honda Civic. It makes it easier when we do shows and shoots to load up equipment. Plus it’s way more eco-friendly.
What music do you play when you’re trying to seduce a lover?
Really anything that my ass can shake to. I keep it either freaky trap like Iggy Azalea “Sip It” or classic R&B like Genuwine “Pony”.
Worst job you’ve ever had?
So, when I first moved to LA, I got a job at Olive Garden. Let me tell you the Olive Gardens in Los Angeles are not like the ones I knew as a kid in North Carolina. Maybe it’s because I was poor, I thought OG and all of the people that got to work there was fancy. Nah, not even close. Working there was so awful and the clientele were so mean. I never want to see unlimited anything ever again.
Would it be a mistake to take you to Olive Garden on a first date?
Take me to dinner with a nice cocktail, then maybe we can walk around town or go dancing. I’m pretty laid back. I really enjoy conversation first and foremost.
What’s your worst habit?
I tend to over analyze everything! I can take the smallest interaction and turn it into something it isn’t. Like were you hitting on me with that last question?
Is there a piece of advice you wish you’d give to yourself ten years ago?
I wish I could tell younger me to just go for it! Don’t let other people’s ideas of who you are affect how you see yourself and the directions you take in life. No one else knows what’s best for you. You only have one life, so live it to the fullest.
What do you hope fans take away from “Bad Bitch Alert”?
Chanel and I talked a lot about this track because we are all about sexual expression and living your truth. We want everyone to feel that have their own Bad Bitch energy and we want them to own it and live it. Be THAT bitch.
PrettiBoiRoq’s “Bad Bitch Alert (featuring Chanel Jole)” is available on iTunes, Spotify and all digital platforms. Its video is on YouTube. Visit PrettiBoiRoq.com and follow him on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter @prettiboiroq