Trans Trenderz is a French-American record label pushing black trans artists to the forefront of the music scene. Founded by Blxck Cxsper in 2016, following a collaborative album of the same name, Trans Trenderz was formed to allow trans musicians a platform to have their music mixed, mastered, and shared on Spotify – something Cxsper found many were scared to do after coming out. They even help artists with marketing and branding, giving them the assistance required to start their own independent business that’ll hopefully become mainstream.
At present, arguably the biggest transgender musician is Kim Petras, featuring on various playlists and albums such as the latest soundtrack for the 2019 movie Charlie’s Angels. SOPHIE is another transgender musician making waves in mainstream music, having collaborated with Charli XCX and Madonna, and being named ‘Artist of the Year’ for OUT magazine. The next biggest transgender musician is probably Laura Jane Grace, lead singer of punk band Against Me!, who came out after the band had formed. They’ve have performed at Portsmouth’s Wedgewood Rooms in 2014 and featured on the Slam Dunk Festival 2017 line-up. However, outside of these artists, there are very few trans musicians close to becoming mainstream. Also to note, Kim Petras, SOPHIE, and Laura Jane Grace are all white musicians, making Trans Trenderz’s goal to promote black trans artists even more important.
Currently, Trans Trenderz seeks to help black trans artists with their newest initiative, The Ghostly Beats Project. As they’re aware that it would be virtually impossible to sign every black trans musician, this project aims to at least give guidance and free services. It operates as a network, where these musicians can seek help from fellow trans artists and allies giving their assistance and services free of charge. Though this won’t provide the same exposure that being signed by a record label would bring, it at least allows these artists a way to professionally create and monetise their music. For instance, Studio G in Brooklyn provides Trans Trenderz with studio time free of charge, and many individuals are aiding the engineering and videography of their musical projects – this is the type of allyship Cxsper hopes to see more of.
Alongside Blxck Cxsper, Trans Trenderz has had two artists signed for a little while now – Apollo Flowerchild and Heather Hills. While Cxsper creates hip-hop/R&B beats, Flowerchild focuses more on acoustic indie/folk, and Hills expresses herself through house/electro hip hop/PC pop. This trio each have projects currently in the works, with Cxsper illustrating their passion for producing by recording, mixing, and encouraging both Flowerchild and Hills to create their best music. The newest signees to the Trans Trenderz label are Jae, Lady Londyn, and Jupiter Gray, who will be releasing new music soon. Cxsper is hoping that Trans Trenderz will teach mainstream labels a lesson – that screaming ‘Black Trans Lives Matter’ isn’t enough when they refuse to invest in any black trans musicians. They want to make it clear that “these voices need to get heard, and we are a financial risk worth taking”.
Though based in New York City, Cxsper is hoping Trans Trenderz will have studios based in both Los Angeles and Boston in the near future. They cite the ultimate goal as having studios in every big city in the United States, with others in Canada and Europe, stating that they “want this to be everywhere. I want a trans takeover!”.
Be sure to keep up with this empowering and essential record label, hoping to bring those musicians most ignored into the world of mainstream music. You can learn more about Trans Trenderz on their website (https://www.transtrenderz.com).