Lingua Franca is the hip hop project of Athens-based linguist Mariah Parker, whose scientific fixation with hip hop language is obvious in the intricate rhymes she interweaves with boom bap beats. By day, Parker is a PhD student in Language and Literacy Education at the University of Georgia, where her doctoral research builds on her experiences as a queer woman of color within hip hop and activist communities. Her music does much the same. Written and recorded while Parker completed a master's degree in linguistics, Parker's first full-length release Model Minority tells unflinching tales of chemically-induced heartbreak, reproductive justice, racial politics and feminist swagger; longtime hip hop heads will hear echoes of nineties New York underground in both her playful vocal delivery and piano-centric, classic R&B-inspired compositions. Last year, Lingua Franca was voted Hip Hop Artist of the Year in the 2017 Flagpole Athens Music Awards in addition to her nominations for Album of the Year and Artist of the Year.
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