SYSK: Waterloo teen and aspiring rap artist set to release first - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

SYSK: Waterloo teen and aspiring rap artist set to release first mixtape

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WATERLOO (KWWL) -

Sixteen-year-old Stephanie Phillips is a student at Waterloo West High School and an aspiring rap artist.

She said she started rapping as a young kid, but started pursuing it more seriously during the last two years.

"I just rap about real-life stuff that happens in the teenage category. School and being popular and being fresh and all that good stuff," said Stephanie Phillips.

Phillips goes by the stage name ShayFresh because Shay is her nickname. Her first mixtape is set to be released on March 3, in Waterloo.

Phillips said she's inspired by other female artists and also hopes to be an inspiration to young girls.

"My favorite singer is Beyonce. I love her work ethic. She branded herself well. I look up to her in the industry," said Stephanie Phillips.

The young rapper writes her own lyrics and said she couldn't put her music together without a good team, including "The Teknitions" as her production team.

The high school student said she'd like to purse rapping as a potential career.

"I'll keep pushing it as far as I can until I can't do it anymore," she said.

But her first priority is getting an education.

"My whole team, if I'm not doing good in school they'll ban me from the studio. After I get that back on track then come back to the studio. I try to keep school first because that's obviously more important," said Phillips.

In addition to music, the junior plans to attend college to be a counselor or maybe a lawyer. In the meantime, Stephanie will be in the studio when it doesn't interfere with high school.

You can attend the ShayFresh Mixtape Release Party on March 3, at 7 p.m. It's at the Five Sullivan Brothers Convention Center in downtown Waterloo.

Tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for children. For more information, call 319-433-5406.

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