I had the pleasure of sitting down and speaking with Miss Storm who is the creator and organizer of The BHM Cyphers. She took time to help us better understand her roots, where she comes from and her what her goals are moving forward. She will be talking about one of her many ventures, The BHM Cyphers, where artists, dancers, teachers, and anyone interested in the freedom to creatively express themselves may do so within her movement.
Leslie: Can you tell us about yourself and your upbringing?
Miss Storm: My name is “Miss Storm”. I am the CEO of the Multi-Media Group Earkandi Productions, the Founder of The Moving Mountains Foundation of Motivational Speakers, and the creator of The Black History Month Cyphers; as well as an award winning song writer and multi-genre artist from Northern Ohio. I am “The Ordained Renaissance Woman.”
Leslie: Growing up and still to this day who were some of your mentors/inspirations and how did they impact your life?
Miss Storm: My childhood was different. My mother battled with Mental Health issues and I was the oldest of five children. I was an entrepreneur at the age of 12, taking care of my mom and my siblings. I grew up in the projects and I survived a lot of traumatic experiences. We were lucky to make it to 21 where I’m from.
My mother is the youngest of 22 children and I was brought up around an immense amount of wisdom and Black History. I’ve always had the utmost respect for my elders and I wouldn’t have made it if it wasn’t for them and the two strong black women who raised me.
I inherited a lot of knowledge about my families ritualistic practices from my grandmother Estelle. She was a bold magical woman, skin dark as midnight and you could see the world turning in her eyes. She was fearless, intuitive and powerful. I witnessed her change situations with oils and words. My grandmother was my biggest inspiration and my best friend.
My Grandma Dolly was sophisticated, high yellow with hair as fine as Europeans. She believed in hard work and having the finer things in life. She introduced me to Christ. She would come pick me up from the projects and take me to church every Sunday and encourage me to sing for the Lord. She was my biggest fan and she motivated me to be great.
Leslie: When did you realize that you had a passion for music and an appreciation for the arts?
Miss Storm: My mother loved music. She had crates of vinyl records and she would love to play her 45’s. I would go in her room and dig through her crates and look at the album covers of everyone from Prince to The Bee Gees. My mother loved music it’s how I connected with her. She influenced my eclectic style of music and really made me appreciate all genres of music.
Leslie: What prompted your positive driven annual movement?
Miss Storm: Life. What I’ve witnessed our culture come from and what I’m witnessing it turn into. I want to preserve our history our legacy our voices. I owe it to my ancestors.
Leslie: In your magazine interview with Voyage you mentioned that your business “had been built from the ground up on faith, and faith alone.” What did you mean by that, can you elaborate?
Miss Storm: The idea of “The BHM Cyphers” came to me in a vision. A higher power placed this inside of my heart for me to see it through. I have already seen it’s importance for our communities and know the positive impact it’s going to have on the younger generation. I believe it will serve a purpose greater than I am able to explain.
Leslie: What were some of the challenges you had to face building your dream, If any?
Miss Storm: Ground Work. This dream in particular requires me to be a lot more involved with the people and it can be challenging at times, working with our people especially when it’s something positive or shedding light. Because it requires more skill, research and development from the individuals. I have been turned away by artists who are not quite ready to dig into their own history or who are not up for the challenge of speaking out on the topics that represent the roots our people.
Leslie: How has your movement/organization made a difference to the culture? What things did you initially see?
Miss Storm: We are raising the bar for content creators. We are challenging hiphop artists to speak up about matters in our community.We are promoting black love and unity. We are changing the way Black History is celebrated every year by documenting our own personal stories and keeping our historical existence alive!
The Black History Month Cyphers has only been in existence for 2 years and we are just getting started.
Leslie: For the readers, what is your mission statement and what is the overall strategy to achieve it?
Miss Storm: My personal motto is: P.O.P, “Purpose Over Paychecks.” Walk in your purpose and the paychecks will follow.
The BHM Cyphers mission statement is: “Bridging the gap between the past, present and future.” You achieve that by knowing your history, yourself and where you are heading.
Leslie: Where would you like to see your movement in 5 years?
Miss Storm: I only believe in progress moving forward, being better and reaching back. I would like to see more artists dedicated to the cause and more outlets like yourself promoting our movement and any other movement promoting black positive content.
Leslie: Does your movement ever revitalize the love of art in you to do a cypher of your own?
Miss Storm: Absolutely. Every year I will try to feature myself in at least one cypher. It keeps me on my toes as well and I love collaborating with dope talent.
Leslie: What are some great words of wisdom and advice that you can offer our readers and aspiring entrepreneurs?
Miss Storm: Knowledge is power. Research everything in your field. Execute. Don’t be afraid to fail or be disliked. Rest your soul and rejuvenate. Being an entrepreneur is hard. Grind like crazy but set aside time to meditate and to reflect on your small accomplishments.