Los Angeles based artist and activist Monique DeBose is inspiring women to choose “MORE,” with her powerful new single. “More’ has always been my personal anthem that I quietly kept in the back of my head for years,” Monique shares “and now I hope it can be an anthem for everyone who identifies as female. It’s so important to consciously decide as women what we are choosing ‘More’ for ourselves so we can band together and support each other to make it happen!”
It packs a punch with lyrics that state “It’s time for us all to take our ovaries off the shelf and choose MORE!” The song has inspired DeBose’s community who have begun posting on social media in response to the message of “More,” and DeBose couldn’t be more thrilled: “The cool thing is that when we write down and declare to the world what we are choosing “More” of, we uphold each other and encourage our sister community to do the same,” says Debose “The world is challenging right now for all of us and we are all facing moments in which we feel that we don’t have a choice. I sing this song to help women, myself included, to remember that they can always choose MORE.”
“More,” is the follow up to the equally powerful song “Rally Call.” “Rally Call” was released on August 28th, a pivotal date in history in the fight for civil rights. It was the day Emmett Till was abducted in 1955, the day Martin Luther King delivered his “I Have a Dream” speech in 1963, and in 2008 it was the day that Barack Obama became the first black man to accept the Democratic nomination for President, going on to be the first black President in U.S. history. DeBose wrote “Rally Call” with Isaac and Thorald Koren as a call to action for the oppressed and those who have lived under the heavy weight of systemic racism for hundreds of years. The performance footage in the video was shot during the height of the George Floyd protests at the Great Wall of Crenshaw, a Los Angeles landmark depicting pivotal figures from African American history. The video garnered over 150K views upon its release striking a chord with people all over the world, including the United Nations, who invited DeBose to perform the song at their SDG Action Zone Conference last month.
DeBose is not being coy about being an artist with a mission to empower the powerless and inspire change. “More” is a personal anthem that Monique wrote for herself years ago when she was a young college graduate taking a leap of faith and abandoning the corporate world to chase her dream of becoming a jazz singer. It had stayed in her head and made an appearance in the odd live set- until now. “Today, at this crazy time in the world, I felt compelled to bring this song to life- to get into the studio and record it and to shoot a video that speaks to women everywhere reminding them that they always have the ability to choose MORE for themselves.”
The video for “More” explores the ways in which Monique, like most women, embodies just a few of the roles she plays life – the mom, the business woman, the homemaker, the voice of reason and the rockstar. The song and accompanying video is a call to action for women to consciously choose “More” for themselves and declare it to the world. When we write it down, we are more likely to commit to it for ourselves, so DeBose is not asking women to want and hope for “More,” but to take action by writing down and sharing what they are choosing “More” of for themselves. The video has started a movement on social media that began with Monique’s inner circle of women, inspired by the song, started creating and sharing videos of what they are choosing more of and has gone on to inspire women around the world to join in the movement for “More.” You can see some of the videos the song has inspired via DeBose’s Instagram HERE.
DeBose holds a master’s degree in Spiritual Psychology and a BA in Mathematics from UC Berkeley. Monique calls Los Angeles home, is married to a Brit, and is raising two compassionate, culturally intelligent boys. Her life and upbringing, being raised by an African American father from the segregated South and Irish American mother from upstate New York, is the inspiration for her work, pushing people to step out of seeing themselves and the world, as black or white, but to embrace all of who they are and to live life in full color.
DeBose honed her craft at Billy Higgin’s famous World Stage jazz club in Leimert Park, as well as in various jazz bands. She is a trained jazz vocal improviser, and once led a community of over 500 improv singers across the world. In 2005 and 2007, she released two albums – Choose the Experience (featuring Kamasi Washington) and Choose the Experience 2 – and performed internationally, in India, China, London, and Amsterdam. This idea of “Living Life in Full Color” is the driving force behind her artistic output. DeBose received rave reviews for her one-woman show “Mulatto Math: Summing up the Race Equation in America” winning the Producer’s Encore Award at the Hollywood Fringe Festival before being transformed into a workshop which she has performed at UCLA and MindValley. DeBose was also a featured artist and performer at TEDx where she performed “Rally Call” live.
You can learn more about Monique DeBose at https://www.moniquedebosemusic.com/.