Listen to the “Weekend Warrior” Rap by The Golden Lionesses of Queens United MS

“We need attention, we need love
  We need attention, we need love…”

Golden Lioness recording

” “Weekend Warriors” recording comes to fruition

So begins the rap written and recorded earlier this month by the Queens United Middle School’s Nike step team, The Golden Lionesses. The song, entitled “Weekend Warriors,” points to the realities our youth deal with by exploring the negative effects of “broken homes.” (Check out the audio and lyrics below.)

The Golden Lioness team comprises 13 young women who, under the tutelage of their dance teacher Davaisia Phillips and the various leaders and staff at SONYC Queens United, developed this public service announcement and will perform routines infused with their message. It’s all part of NYC’s Department of Youth and Community Development and Nike’s “Step It Up” initiative, which calls on dance teams comprised of young people ages 10-20 to use their talents to raise awareness around the causes they care most about. Through a series of competitions, teams are judged on their community service project and stage performances.

Golden Lionesses Broken Homes

The Golden Lionesses workshopped their “Broken Homes” theme throughout December.

Arriving at their theme was natural for The Golden Lionesses, explains Tabatha Ferrer, MSW, Queens United MS ExTRA ’s school-based clinical supervisor. “A lot of these kids do come from broken homes; many spend various weekends with parents at different places.” The lyrics for “Weekend Warriors” evolved through December as our Lionesses took part in conversations centered on their topic. Once complete, the group relied on the Groovy Projects organization to set up a makeshift studio replete with microphones and headphones to record and edit their masterpiece.

Carrying the distinction of a “Golden Lioness” is no small feat. The girls must maintain good grades and behavior to remain on the team, Ferrer explains, and, after doing homework, the team practices “at least four nights a week — and some Saturdays, too.” Recently, the Golden Lionesses also presented their social campaign and dance performance to their peers, school community, and parents.

It’s obviously an undertaking felt deeply by those involved, including one member who said in a video posted to the group’s YouTube channel, “When I’m in dance class, we’re like a whole family dancing together… It feels like home to me.” (Also check out this vignette about how the girls find solace through their dance family.)

Queens United Golden Lionesses_2nd Nike audition

Queens United Golden Lionesses’ 2nd Nike audition, November 19, 2016

After having been named among the top 25 teams at their second Nike audition in November, the Golden Lionesses will compete this weekend in the semi-finals in front of an audience. The Step It Up NYC Junior Division Semifinal event will take place at Symphony Space (2537 Broadway at 95th Street, New York, NY) on Saturday, January 21, from 2:30–4 pm. (Doors open at 2.) The goal: Make it to the final eight teams to perform at the Apollo this spring. There’s more than bragging rights at stake: Troupes making the finals will have a chance to spread their messages far and wide across the city. “I am beyond proud of the golden lionesses and how hard they have worked to get their message across various channels,” says program director Shantryce Hare. “So many students struggle with the social-emotional effects behind being in a broken homes, and no one is talking about it. It’s a much needed conversation.”

Without further ado, please listen to our Lady Lions’ rap, and wish them well in their semifinal performance. Go get ‘em, girls!

“Weekend Warriors” by Queens United MS’ Golden Lionesses:


 

Chant
We Need attention
We need love

Verse 1
Mommy divorced Daddy
Now I barely even see him
Stuck in the middle
Cuz my parents always beefing

Don’t want to choose sides so I’m all by myself
Fell into depression do they care about my health?

Sometimes I think I’m the cause of the break up
Maybe if I’m gone
Just maybe they’ll make up

A letter to my parents
Hoping things would get fixed
Should I get a knife and put it to my wrist?

Chorus
Who you gonna call?
Who’s it gonna be?
Call the guidance counselor to set your mind free

Gotta get my mind right
And see what I can be
So I can be an inspiration
For all the kids like me

Verse 2
Let’s talk about women
Couldn’t even make the same wages as a man
If a man is married, then he’ll make more money

If there’s only one parent,
there’s a teenage pregnancy
No love, no attention

So they went and started a family
But now that’s just adding to the percentage of poverty
He said, “Sometimes I feel alone”

Sometimes it’s really dark
But no one notices my pain and feels the need to interrupt
And then boom, the rates for suicide go up

Daddy left; now I’m angry
Gonna go out in the streets
So much rage going through me
Mess with me, and you’ll get beat

Yeah, I may go to jail
but I’m alone so IDC

Chorus
Who you gonna call?
Who’s it gonna be?
Call the guidance counselor to set your mind free

Gotta get my mind right
And see what I can be
So I can be an inspiration
For all the kids like me

Chant
We need attention
We need love

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