Haviah Mighty Is a Hot Commodity on 'Stock Exchange' Mixtape
Published Nov 23, 2021When Haviah Mighty received the Polaris Music Prize in 2019 for her album 13th Floor, she became the first-ever rapper to claim the title. The 28-year-old from Brampton, ON, has yet to properly break out from the underground, but on her latest mixtape, Stock Exchange, she isn't entirely concerned with proving her dominance as much as she is her artistry.
The mixtape is all politics and growing pains; over 12 songs, she attempts to make sense of a global pandemic, unemployment and a racial reckoning. But the general concept is no concept. "I just wanted to release a bunch of dope singles without the expectation for it to be deep on any level," Mighty said in a press release accompanying the project.
Stock Exchange is inspired by both the sound and political messaging of reggae. Songs like "Obeah" and "Protest," featuring UK grime artist Yizzy — where Mighty refers to police in patois as "bwoy dem" — reflect her Jamaican roots, and the reggaetón-inspired "Flamenco" with the help of Mala Rodriguez.
As a curator, Mighty lends the spotlight to guests based on their strengths. But even in collaboration, she maintains a DIY approach: "DIY, I learn it if I know I'm not equip," she raps on "Antisocial," featuring Old Man Saxon. "This that Imma do it on my motherfuckin' lonesome.'" She relishes self-sufficiency on "Good On My Own Tonight," too, featuring fellow Bramptonian TOBi. You can hear her desire to deemphasize sales and commercial success on songs like the summery "Avocado."
The music videos for Stock Exchange thus far are as vibrant as the project's lyrical imagery. In the video for "Tesla," one of the mixtape's biggest standouts, Mighty wreaks havoc through Toronto with the ferocity of a Mario Kart racer, picking up items that aid in her symbolic level-up. In the "Obeah" video, Mighty is set up by one of her friends after suspecting betrayal from another.
With the dozen tracks from Stock Exchange having been released on a monthly basis since dropping mixtape opener "Atlantic" last November, Stock Exchange does what it was intended to — push back on the way music is manufactured, quickly consumed and has its worth determined by streaming metrics. There is something for every hip-hop lover as if to echo the recent push for everyone to invest in stocks, yet Mighty is not interested in selling her soul to the market.