Social media was detrimental to Gigi Lamayne in the lead-up to her stay in hospital.
The young star made headlines last year after she tweeted about her depression, which landed her in hospital. The rapper had spent the days before that tweeting her birth date and alleged death date, which had her fans in a frenzy.
“I think that was the tipping point for me. I think my actions, subconsciously, felt there needed to be a change on how people treated each other on these platforms. A lot of people realise there’s a bullying mentality when it comes to artists and influential people, and with me I didn’t look the part. I wasn’t slender enough or light in complexion enough. It was always around these fickle discussions about my appearance,” said the Ice Cream hitmaker.
She added that the bullying was in addition to the personal matters she was dealing with at the time.
“A lot of pressures of social media and the fact that there are no regulations when it comes to social media and in the way people interact with one another is problematic.
"The reason I opened up was to create awareness. At that point I did think I was going to die.”
She added that being a millennial and having interacted with technology from a young age made social media an extension of who she was.
“Naturally it affects a lot of how we feel as we create virtual personalities online, and that was something difficult I was going through. But overall it was about creating awareness at that point in time – issues around depression, cyber bullying, and policies and regulations that govern social media needing to be addressed.”
Right now, though, she is looking at life positively, focusing on herself, using social media to promote her music and making sure she surrounds herself with positivity.
“The way we get treated and ridiculed as artists, it’s almost like we don’t deserve to be human. I have good people around me and this year is going to be a really good year. I’m dropping an album in July, my birth month, and I want things to be cosmically correct.”
Her latest release, Bozza, featuring Kwesta, was released on digital platforms late last year.
“It’s a song I wanted to do for the longest time with Kwesta. He is one of my favourite rappers of all time. The song is about a young female in the industry, a pioneer for female voices,” she said.
The most important thing for Gigi was that the song was about a township crew going out to the world and making an impact without losing their roots.
The most important thing for her was that the song was about a township crew going out to the world and making an impact without losing their roots.
The 24-year-old is also working on the Gigi Dance Show, an event she believes will go down in the history books.
“It will be the first one woman show for an African female hip hop artist. A lot of the people joining me are people who understand the feminine voice is something to be reckoned with and respected in the industry.
It is a show that is going to make history and I’ve just got to a point where I’ve decided to take on the challenges because if not me then who will do it?”