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Syd the Kyd on Odd Future, Her Sexuality and Why She Hates the Word "Lesbian"

Syd the Kyd on Odd Future, Her Sexuality and Why She Hates the Word "Lesbian"
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In this week's cover story, we kick it with Odd Future members Syd the Kyd and Matt Martians, and talk with them about their new duo The Internet, whose album Purple Naked Ladies was recently released digitally. Syd also opens up about her sexuality and what it's like being in a group that uses "faggot" so much. (Tyler employs it over 200 times on Goblin.) Below are excerpts from our conversations that didn't make the story.

On the lack of out-of-the-closet gay urban artists:

Syd: "There's Alicia Keys, who's married to Swizz Beatz - we know that shit ain't real. You got Queen Latifah kissing Common in movies. Missy Elliott saying she don't wanna hang with bitches. You know she loves her some bitches."

On the word "lesbian":

"I hate the word 'lesbian.' Or 'pussy.' Or even like, 'thespian.' They're just awkward words! If you know me you might hear me say the word 'gay,' or something. I'd much rather say gay than lesbian. Not only that, but I don't know if I'd kick it with a group of lesbians anyway."

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Star Foreman
Matt Martians and Syd the Kyd of The Internet

On coming out via The Internet's "Cocaine" video:

Syd: "I decided to do it because I wish I had someone like that [an openly gay female artist] while I was coming up. People write on my Tumblr just thanking me for making the video, saying that I really inspire them, and they want to be like me. But I wasn't always this way, this comfortable with myself, and I remember what that was like. So I figure, fuck it. Everyday people aren't given this opportunity and I realize that. And I didn't at first. I thought I was just lucky to be along for the ride."

On getting asked that question:

Syd: "I put myself out there because I'm sick of people asking. I've been asked it so many times. It's annoying, it's like, you can't answer that yourself? And awkward because it's not like they're going up to the other guys in the group and asking if they're straight. Now I don't have to answer that question outright. Because I don't want to. It's not that I'm not proud of who I am."

So, um, is she gay?

Syd: "Do I look straight to you? Shit, you got your answer -- go watch 'Cocaine.'"

On good hair:

Syd: "I used to have long hair and get it done every two weeks, and it was never worth it to me. I would just walk out of the salon and put it in a ponytail anyway. I didn't want that shit in my face, blowing all in the wind, turn my head and slappin' me -- that shit is annoying! And it was even more annoying having to pay $50-60 every two weeks to get it look decent. Or to get my mom to let me walk out of the house. The first chance I got to cut my hair I did. It was a start to trying to gain some sort of freedom."

On high school:

Syd: "I was a loner, I spent the first half of high school alone. I was extremely depressed at Palisades, I won't say that switching school even helped that completely. But the black kids at Pali felt that since they were so far away from the 'hood they were better than everybody, and if you weren't on a sports team and you were black, you didn't have any friends. So when I quit the basketball team, suddenly everybody stopped being my friend. But it made me a stronger person, and I'ma be rich when I grow up and make them all regret it."

 

Syd the Kyd on Odd Future, Her Sexuality and Why She Hates the Word "Lesbian"
Star Foreman

On her relationship with her mom:

Syd: "My mom wasn't expecting me to end up how I ended up. When she wanted to have kids, she wanted to have two girls, and then she got my brother and me. Which is a disappointment to anybody, you can't help it. A lot of the hair issue was her. I would've cut it a lot sooner if it wasn't for her. But we've come so far and she's my best friend."

On swag:

Martians: "We don't say 'swag' once on the whole [The Internet] album! Okay, maybe once."

On Odd Future and controversy:

Martians: "Hodgy, Tyler and Earl didn't plan to rap about those things to get a reaction from the media. They were doing it from the jump. So don't crown us for being these 'important' guys, and then what you crown us for, you wanna clown us for. We didn't ask for you to put us up here like this."

Syd: "If you don't like it, don't listen to it."

Martians: "Right. But a lot of people do because they feel like they have to listen to Odd Future. They feel like they need to have an opinion."

Syd: "That, and a lot of people feel like they don't have a cause to fight for. So when they can get on the internet and rant about something, they take their chance."

Martians: "People like being offended. Let's be real."

On touring as The Internet:

Syd: "It will probably happen. We'd have a live band. I've already recruited some really talented musicians I know from Hamilton. It'll be different, but I think the real fans will be open to it."

 

On cocaine:

Syd: "We made "Cocaine" because at the time cocaine was being pushed in all our faces, everybody around us was doing it and we were like why? For a 20 minute high that you're gonna get addicted to, that's overpriced?"

On shock value:

Martians: "I'm not saying do it without a basis or a goal or a point - if you do something that's shocking, you have to do it to show people the truth behind shit. You have to show people who eat McDonald's the pigs being slaughtered for them to understand what they're really eating."

On TV:

Martians: "You can't say shit about music until you stop making movies. You have movies on network TV showing kids people getting raped and shot -- that tells them a lot more about those things and how to do them than some metaphorical shit in my music that some kid is probably not gonna get. What you see affects you way more than what you hear."

On fame:

Martians: "These days no one wants to be Robin. Nobody wants to be the sidekick. Nobody wants to just make music -- they want to be the most successful. They want the fame of it. But Syd and I don't even leave the house, we're not on the internet all day promoting our stuff, and our music still spread by word of mouth. It shows that you don't have to chase fame -- the music can stand for itself."

On homosexuality in the media:

Syd: "We didn't make the video to make a statement about Odd Future and homophobia. It was to showcase a song by the Internet. But over the years I've come across so many dyke singers, dyke rappers, people with real heart and passion, and it's a shame that not one of them has made it. And I get it, the world is just now starting to become open about homosexuality. I can't really say I've contributed to that, and I'm grateful to the people who have set a path for me to be who I am today. And I guess in that sense I want to return the favor."

On "dyke" music:

"Who knows, I could start a whole spur of dyke music. I can't try to say that riot grrrls and all that shit didn't exist, but most people don't know what that is. Unless you've seen every episode of The L-Word, you probably don't know what that whole movement is. Because it's not even around anymore. It was there and it died down, a lot. And even those women were feminine. You know, look at me. I'm wearing men's jeans and I have a mohawk."

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