This week for our penultimate episode of Best Advice: Season 1, we’ve got Princess Nokia, FKA Wavy Spice, AKA Destiny Nicole Frasqueri on the pod. At just 29 she’s already released four albums and two mixtapes — which includes her two full lengths from last year: Everything is Beautiful and Everything Sucks. Most recently you’ve probably heard her on former Best Advice guest Ashnikko’s smash “Slumber Party,” not to mention her track “It’s Not My Fault,” her first since signing to Arista, and this fall she hits the road on her first ever headline tour throughout the month of October.
Nokia fearlessly embraces her myriad influences — punk, R&B, rap, pop, rave, emo — and pours it all into her music. She isn’t hemmed in by genre conventions and the inclusivity of her sound is also reflected in the community she creates with her fans and at her shows.
Talking to her, she’s surprisingly soft-spoken: lean-in-close one minute and then the next she’s raucous, louder than life. Get her riffing on her love of PT Cruisers and she practically squeals.
Nokia had a ton of experiences to share and tips to offer, from the importance of protecting your energy and tapping into your inner child to being unafraid to let your freak flag fly. She discussed why getting older should be embraced and why there’s so much to be learned in moments of solitude. Plus she relayed some advice from the late, great ASAP Yams.
On a personal tip, one of the things I really love about Nokia is her overall outlook. She’s dealt with some knocks in her time and her childhood was tough. She lost her mother at 10, and subsequently spent time in foster care where she dealt with abuse, and yet she moves through the world like a beam of positivity. Music and career strategies aside — this is just really inspiring to witness.
Highlights from Princess Nokia’s Best Advice episode
Self-love keeps you centered
As a woman or as a person or a young creative, it's really easy to get lost within yourself and expectations and the kind of circus that's going around you. Self-love is really a radical act. It's been what's been saving me. It's the reason why Princess Nokia still exists. That a-ha moment, that secret to success, it really comes from myself, within. It does take practice and it takes discipline. You have to make yourself love yourself again and again and again. It's a worthy journey.
Surround yourself with good people who allow you to tap into your inner child
Everybody needs to find a connection to your inner child, that inner adolescent, that root of what makes you so great and makes you have fun. And makes you feel free. For me, that's my group of friends. So the advice is to surround yourself with people who believe in greatness, who believe in you. And who believe that they can help take you to the next level, if that's where you want to go.
As an artist there are no boundaries
We are the wild, wild West, honey. There are no limitations for what an artist can do. Look at Jhené Aiko, she's a healer. She does affirmation albums. Look at Saweetie, she does hair endorsements. Look at Joey Bada$$, he's an actor. Look at me, I'm a spiritual healer. I'm an exhibitionistm, I'm an actress, I'm a voiceover actress. If the mainstream world or the general audience is confused by me, I can either do two things: I can hide parts of myself [so I’m] easily digestible and it’ll make my life easier. Or you can say, I'm going to take risks with my art. I'm going to open myself up and I'm going to experiment.