BlackBook Archives: In and Around LA With Uffie

It took Uffie three years to finish her debut album. Now that it’s finally done, the Paris-based hip-hop MC takes a much-deserved break to revisit her West Coast hangs (May, 2010). 

“You can’t just pull an album out of your ass,” says Uffie, the 22-year-old rapper, by way of accounting for why it’s taken her three years to finish her first record, next month’s Sex Dreams & Denim Jeans. “The other stuff I’d done was just for fun. I had to find my style, musically, and my artistic confidence.”

Her 2006 EP Pop the Glock brought her to the attention of the international club scene and propelled three years of continuous touring. It was the birth of her daughter Henrietta last October (the father is Parisian graffitist and nightlife player André Saraiva) that finally pushed Uffie to get o the road and into the studio. Once there, she recorded the album’s lead single with Pharrell, her favorite hip-hop artist.

Although being a mother hasn’t tempered the Paris-based singer’s willingness to talk explicitly about sex—on “Pop the Glock,” for example, she calls herself a “badass bitch/ I’m rated X/ I’m gifted/ Ain’t gotta sell sex”—it has changed her entire perspective on life. “Your child is the only person in life you love more than yourself. I don’t want to spend as much time wasting my youth in the clubs. She’s a reason to get up in the morning.”


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Dim Mak Studio

4953 Hollywood Boulevard

This is the office of my friend Steve Aoki’s label, Dim Mak Records. It’s also a store where they sell their merchandise. We play poker here and it’s a general hangout a er shows, especially after this weekly gig on Tuesday nights at CineSpace [6356 Hollywood Boulevard]. The Dim Mak team is a great group and they’re involved in all of the festivals. I met Steve at one of my first gigs at the Winter Music Conference in Miami in 2007 and we’ve been best friends ever since.

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Amoeba Music

6400 Sunset Boulevard

I came here for the first time in 2007. It’s the biggest record shop ever. It’s cool how they have both new and used stuff. It has every kind of music you could want under one roof. I got a Joy Division album here and I like to browse through the hip-hop.

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Skylight Books

1818 North Vermont Avenue

If you’re out shopping at the vintage clothing stores in Los Feliz, you can get a little brainwork in here at the same time. Skylight is my favorite independent bookstore in L.A. It’s intimate and well laid out. Two of my favorite writers are Bret Easton Ellis and Michel Houellebecq. I like contentious, dark stuff.

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Fred 62

1850 North Vermont Avenue

They have a front patio, which is key for me. You can people-watch without being too close to the street. The bright colors and retro-kitsch décor inside are fun. This place has great comfort food, like my favorite, mac ’n’ cheese. I left the U.S. for Hong Kong when I was 4, so I didn’t get to spend ample time in diners as a teenager. I still regret missing out on prom and the whole American college experience.

Photography by Zoey Grossman, Styling by Brett Bailey Makeup: Tsipporah using MAC cosmetics, Hair: Judd Minter using Bumble and Bumble, Stylist Assistant: Danielle Defoe. Second image: Coat by Jeremy Scott, Third image: Jacket by Marni, Fourth Image: Jacket by KTZ, Catsuit by Betsey Johnson, Shoes by Doego Bolcini
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