CarefreeBlackGirl Announces Return Of Cookout Tours 2021

Quanna, also known as Quanna MC, started referring to herself as a “Carefree Black Girl” back in 2008. What began as a self-mantra turned into a hashtag. And what turned into a hashtag is now a lifestyle brand and a movement that rings true for Black girls everywhere.

Black women DJing at a Black girl meetup. (Photo courtesy of Quanna)
Black women DJing at a Black girl meetup. (Photo courtesy of Quanna)

“By the time I graduated college around like 2012, and actively started using the term [#CarefreeBlackGirl] and… posting it on social media, I saw that it was becoming popular. But over time, it went from just being the saying that I was calling myself to a hashtag on social media, and it grew to what it is today,” Quanna said.

Originally hailing from Savannah, Georgia, Shaquanna Bolden, who goes by her stage name Quanna, graduated from Clark Atlanta University but knew that she always wanted to pursue music. So, she packed up her stuff and moved to New York.

“I’ve been creating music my whole life. My family is kind of like [made up of] artists,” she said. “I started when I was young. I wrote my fifth-grade school song. When I graduated from college, I knew I wanted to [make] music, but I couldn’t really figure out my place in Atlanta, so I started rapping in college. I started writing songs and then when I graduated, I moved to New York.”

CarefreeBlackGirl exists as a nod, not about Black girls having no worries, but unapologetically moving past those obstacles towards achievement. The brand centers on woman empowerment using entrepreneurship, local businesses, and creatives. Once Quanna realized she had a brand on her hands, she went on to get her LLC and Trademark for her business.

The brand started with meetups in her newfound city, Brooklyn, New York. Those meetups have now amassed to cross-country tours she’s named the CarefreeBlackGirl cookouts. They often feature Black-owned businesses and performances. The festival also typically has a “Glam Bar” where festival-goers can try out beauty products and learn about new brands. As a rapper, music and supporting Black female artists have been a massive part of this. After taking a year off because of the pandemic, Quanna is excited to be starting up tours again. This year, you can expect tours in Brooklyn, Los Angeles, and Atlanta.

Black people and performers from a Black girl festival. (Photo courtesy of Quanna)
Black people and performers from a Black girl festival. (Photo courtesy of Quanna)

“We’ve been a plug, and we’ve become a platform for young, Black women artists who are coming out right now because we’re one of the most sought out activations for American festivals,” Quanna said. “We help educate and also we give the community hope. I’ve had people say like ‘yo before I came to a CarefreeBlackGirl cookout, I didn’t know that I could be a paid artist, if I wasn’t on the radio or if I wasn’t doing this, or doing that.’”

CarefreeBlackGirl has also expanded into other avenues. One of the most notable being the #CarefreeBlackGirl podcast, where you can expect to hear about everything, “Carefree, Black and Girl.” The show is in its fifth season.

“You have culture, comedy, and all types of the latest gaga. We talk about wellness, we talk about the job stuff,” Quanna said. “So the next episode, we’ll probably be talking about real housewives tea, but we’ll also be talking about stuff like the vaccine and things of that nature. If you want to find out about new music we are always dropping in new bops.”

As for what’s next? Quanna is always thinking bigger and better. As her rapper career grows, she envisions the podcast branch of her business to continue to grow and taking CarefreeBlackGirl tours worldwide.

“The impact is putting Black women at the forefront, and I’m talking about all types of Black women, not just the ones that are [socially] acceptable. I’m talking about disabled Black women. I’m talking about queer Black folk, you know, everyone,” Quanna said. I think our impact is bringing Black women up as a whole. And you know it’s Carefree Black Girl, but it’s for all the folks. Whoever wants to be involved with it, you’re having a bad day; we still welcome you.”

To learn more about CarefreeBlackGirl, donate, or become a performer or vendor at the next cookout, click here.

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