Vallier meets : Sarahmée


The Montreal-based rapper talks race, music & more.

We’ve seen a bit of everything in 2020. Gatherings are outdoors, and with cooler weather, we’re hooking up with artists, influencers and the like in places with architectural flair. We’re also hooking them up with pieces from our Fall-Winter 2020 collection. Join us on a discovery of open spaces, open conversations and open ideas.
The rapper Sarahmée shares her 2020 perspective.

People say artists need to reinvent themselves during COVID. Have you tweaked anything in your style or approach?
I’ve become more engaged. Since the pandemic, I’ve taken a stronger stand on certain subjects and spoken out on social media about issues important to me. We’re going through a time when what you stand for is important—and people are listening.

What are you paying special attention to these days?
Following the news, listening to what people are saying, paying attention to facts. It’s a beautiful thing to see people coming together for communal causes.

How about us as a community—is there something we should be more aware of, or dig deeper into?
Pay more attention to all minorities, politics, the human condition...all sorts of things are happening right now, we have to stay alert.

What does the racial justice movement mean to you?
As a Black woman it’s critical. Justice has always been part of my struggle, and we are waking up to this now more than ever. Systemic racism exists—and it must be confronted head-on.

When you see the world changing with more racial justice movements, what role do you think brands can play in this?
We’re constantly bombarded by marketing and brands in every public space. It all influences us. I feel that brands, just like artists, must have a degree of social responsibility. Our role is a fundamental one.

Montreal seems to be a big influence in your music, but your style draws on different cultures, languages, histories, even religions. Can you talk about that importance?
My music reflects my life, the places I’ve lived, the religions I’ve been able to discover, and all the cultures that pass through me. I just found a sound that’s me and reps me in every way. I don’t feel obliged to choose one culture over another, I can mix them all together and still be me. That’s the best thing about it!

Who are you listening to now?
Big Sean, Burna Boy, Alicia Keys’ new album, Imposs and Shay Lia.

Break down your sartorial style for us.
I love an adrogynous look. I love playing around with the feminine and masculine. I’m as into oversized tops with jeans and high tops as long dresses and sandals in summer. For footwear, I go for basketball shoes, Dr. Martens style boots and wedge heels. I’m buying a lot of shoes these days, but I’ll stop (laughs). Classic looks in monochrome outfits have appeal too. Otherwise I go for a sporty look, long coats and sweats! Miniskirts are definitely not my thing.

What can we look forward to from Sarahmée?
Music—coming soon! Until then, I’m performing at the gala premiere of the ADISQ awards, and am producing my next album.