CLEVELAND — A competition in the heart of Cleveland’s downtown is giving artists a big opportunity with a grand prize of opening up for a legendary hip-hop group.
Battle of the Land, hosted by Bedrock and Tower City Center, kicked off in September and the final round is Wednesday, Oct. 27. One of the contestants, Brittany "Blayzee" Blayzey, said there’s nowhere else she’d rather be than on a stage.
“It’s like an adrenaline rush. When I get on stage, when I see the crowd, it just pumps me up. It’s my life. This is my life, being a performer,” said Blayzee.
Blayzee’s love for hip-hop has been a dream for decades.
“I was 9 years old and I was watching VH1 Behind the Music on TLC. Something with them just really inspired me, with Left Eye’s raps and just the energy that they brought and the positivity that they brought ... it just was so inspiring,” said Blayzee.
Blayzee’s song choice for the competition is one that’s very personal. The 29 year old does her own lyric writing. The song, Suicide Awareness, was inspired by her discovery of a friend who died from suicide.
“That night, I felt like a part of me died as well. And I never got therapy or the help I needed to get and I wrote this song, Suicide Awareness, and I just felt like this is what I need to do. I need to just get my message out there and try to help people the best that I can,” explained Blayzee.
And she’s ready to perform that song in front of a crowd for the Battle of the Land.
“The more events and opportunities that you get like this, you know, you’re that much closer to making your dreams come true. It could take five years, it could take 20. But if you keep on believing and you keep pushing and you do these opportunities that are thrown to you, you’ll make it. You’ll make your dreams come true,” she said.
Blayzee also hopes her message carries beyond the competition.
“If I can just help one person, or they know someone that they can help, then that’s a big win for me,” she said.
The grand prize winner will be announced after the final round Wednesday, and they will open for Grammy-award-winning group Bone Thugs-N-Harmony on Thursday.