By Tammy Scileppi
Like her musical inspiration – famous rapper Nicki Minaj, who grew up in Jamaica – rising hip hop star Small Wundah is a proud Queens girl raised in Far Rockaway.
When Tyrema Mosley, 14, isn’t rapping, or writing and arranging her own rhymes, the multi-talented high school student is hitting the books at Channel View School for Research in Rockaway Beach, where she’s on the basketball team.
The young rapper finds beats from other artists and writes songs that are totally different.
“I take those beats and make new songs that display my creativity. My sound is hip hop, edgy and clean; I don’t use profanity or any explicit language,” said Mosley, who has been a big fan of Minaj since 2007, and says she also likes hip hop recording artist Lil Mama.
The active, creative teenager seems to have her feet firmly planted on the ground. She talks about going to college and becoming an entertainment lawyer one day, but there’s no doubt she’s got stars in her eyes and hopes to rhyme her way to fame in a few years.
And it may happen sooner than later because she already has quite a following, which includes her parents, two brothers and two sisters, her cousins and, of course, many good friends. Her family said they’re very supportive of her music and always give great reviews.
Small Wundah already has three mix tapes, and has made a bunch of videos. She recently dropped a mix tape called “Killen Spree,” and before that “Far Rock’s Princess.”
Explaining the meaning behind “Killen Spree,” Mosley said, “I’m lyrically killing these rappers with my words, creativity and versatility. Nothing is at all violent. It’s about making it known that I’m an artist with skills, regardless of age.”
And make it known she did, when at age 10 she auditioned for “America’s Got Talent.”
Since then her growing fan base has been watching her perform at venues like Club Pyramid and The West End in Manhattan, and this past summer on Beach 9th Street in Far Rockaway, during the National Night Out on Crime event. And she was recently interviewed twice by DJ Mike Styles on Hotline Radio.
“I haven’t had any performances scheduled, since school just recently began, but I’ve been writing and I’m getting ready to start shooting a new video,” said Mosley, whose biggest fans are her mom and manager Tori Mosley, and her dad, Ricky Bates.
“’Killen Spree’ definitely shows creativity and her love for music. I feel she’ll be successful with her up and coming career and I’m proud of all she has done thus far,” said Tori Mosley, who is worried if Tyrema doesn’t get enough sleep or isn’t focusing on schoolwork. But as Small Wundah’s manager, she’s got her hands full booking shows and arranging studio time at The Den in Bayswater, where her music is recorded; providing video treatments and shopping for different looks; promoting her daughter’s music through social media, while distributing it to various stores.
“I make sure Tyrema continues to display her best talent,” said Tori Mosley, who once rapped under the name Wundah Wuman. Tyrema said that’s where she got the idea for Small Wundah.
Popular female rapper, Rah Digga, a former member of Busta Rhymes’ hip hop group, Flipmode Squad, recently spoke with bet.com about an idea she’s pushing: Hip hop is raising our kids; it needs to happen in schools and should become part of the curriculum, she said. And if you asked Tyrema, she’d definitely agree, and would probably ace that class. The budding rapper started rhyming for her Head Start teacher when she was just 6.
Like most parents, Tyrema’s mom agrees that “it’s been very tough parenting a teen,” but says she stands firm on what she expects of her, as far as being responsible for school and knowing how important respect is. “I spend so much time with my Tyrema to keep her focused,” she said and recalled that from a very young age her daughter always loved music. “I used to sing to her and carry her as we’d listen to music and dance.”
So how does the young hip hop artist juggle everything?
“During my spare time I like to play basketball, shop or hang out with my close friends and cousins,” said Mosley. “When I get home I always do my homework first, then I go and have my fun. Sometimes, I get the urge to write new songs when I’m listening to music, so here’s a rhyme I’d like to share with TimesLedger readers.”
“I control like Kendrick — I mean I’m focused — I’m playing the game to win it — They say it’s impossible I’m a make it to the finish — I might come through a few obstacles but my hope is replenished — If I believe I can achieve I said — it feels like I’m living a dream I said.”
Small Wundah’s “Killen Spree” can be purchased at urbanmixtape.com/small-wundah-killen-spree.