Photos by Keith Major. Video by Boima Anderson.
A teenage mother from a modest family in Jamaica, Shenseea wasn’t necessarily on the short list of women who’d be crowned the next dancehall queen. Luckily, she had her own plans. “I would advise those who are facing the same obstacles as me to follow your own voice. If you feel like something is right within you then do it and move towards that,” she told EBONY. The decision to chase a career in music was easy, but navigating the industry wasn’t—at least at first.
“If you feel like something is right within you then do it and move towards that.”
In celebration of Women’s History Month, EBONY is highlighting a curated list of dynamic, badass women who are breaking boundaries— loudly and with pride. In Women Who Rule Break, a series of personal video essays, Black women share how they carved out their own lanes, healed from disappointment and trauma, and found success while pursuing their passion by breaking the rules.
After five years of hard work in the studio and scoring collabs with established artists like Vybz Kartel, Sean Paul, and Meg The Stallion, Shenseea released her chart-topping debut album “Alpha” last March. “A very important lesson I’m learning now is to be patient… I recognize that (to achieve) greatness, you have to take your time because you need time to learn, you need time to grow, you need time to make mistakes. It’s all about being patient. That’s the biggest lesson I’ve learned.”
Like most musical artists, Dancehall Queen Shenseea is always thinking about—and working on—what’s next. “I’m on the last lap of completion, so real soon,” she recently announced to fans asking for more music.
“Do what simply makes you happy. It’s so boring and suffocating when you have to stick to the status quo.”-Shenseea
Though she’s achieved much success and accolades, including scoring a highly-coveted spot in the lineup of 2023’s Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival, Shenseea has even bigger plans for her career and, perhaps most important, joy. Fresh off the heels from her electrifying Rolling Loud performance, in this episode of Women Who Rule Break, the Dancehall Queen speaks candidly about finding her confidence and defining her path in the industry—all while balancing motherhood.
Watch the latest episode of Women Who Rule Break featuring Shenseea here and check out more episodes of the series throughout March.
PHOTO DIRECTOR / PHOTOGRAPHER KEITH MAJOR
EXECUTIVE PRODUCER TRACEY WOODS
STYLIST KRIS FE
MAKEUP ARTIST SHENSEEA
HAIR STYLIST KALIEF WOLFE
PHOTO ASSISTANT STEPHEN PANOSIAN
HEAD OF VIDEO / ASSOCIATE CREATIVE DIRECTOR STEVEN CORNELIO
DIRECTOR BOIMA ANDERSON
AD / SET MANAGER KIARA THE VOICE
SET DECORATOR KENDAL
SET DECORATOR PA OLIVIA EBLING
PRODUCTION ASSISTANTS NABIL KEYRO, KALIEGH SCHOEN
KEY GRIP KALIEGH SCHOEN
SOUND & BOOM ARTIST DAVE POLO
CREATIVE PRODUCER SABINE QUETANT