A ‘gyal’ on a mission
Sherrexcia “Rexy” Rolle is on a mission, having kicked off 2020 with the release of “All Our Lives”, a song about embracing the love you always wanted, either in a relationship or chasing a dream.
In her case, Rexy is making her dreams reality with the release of a single that celebrates her Bahamian heritage and reached beyond The Bahamas’ shores to lands that as a little girl from the islands she could only dream of.
“I believe in breaking the mold and living boldy,” said Rexy. “I’ve been waiting all my life to experience this moment in music. Music is my passion, and I’m finally living the dreams of that little girl holding a hairbrush, singing in the mirror. I am a ‘gyal’ on a mission.”
Rexy’s story is not the typical one.
She spent the early years of her life in Mastic Point, Andros, before her family moved to Fort Lauderdale, Florida, when she was six years old. She excelled in school and loved singing, dancing and songwriting.
“I wrote my first song at around the age of eight to the melody of Mary J. Blige’s ‘Not Gon’ Cry’, after listening to the soundtrack for ‘Waiting to Exhale’, over and over and over,” she recalled. “The song I wrote was about a boy not breaking my heart. My mom had a fit! She thought the lyrics were entirely too mature for a young girl my age. How could an eight-year-old relate to the storyline of ‘Waiting to Exhale’?”
Rexy, who exudes feminine confidence with a fashion style that is purely and identifiably Rexy, says she likes her hair really big, her dresses tight and her heels high. And that she’s constantly told she should tone it down, but that she loves being a woman.
The way she dresses, she said, is definitely Rexy.
She says the Rexy of today is not at all a far cry from the little girl who, in first grade, colored all her trees and animals purple and pink. Her expressive personality extended to fashion as well.
“When I was in school in Fort Lauderdale, my parents decided I was ‘too into fashion and short skirts’ so they put me in uniform in a non-uniform school,” she recalled. “There I was with my oversized khakis that came up to my chest, stiff pressed white shirts and a roller bag that made me look like I was a flight attendant. Kids asked me, ‘Why do you dress like that?’ and my friends from elementary school no longer wanted to be seen with me. My roller book bag was kicked all the time until I started threatening people. But I actually appreciate that experience, because it was the first time I recognized the importance of appreciating people who genuinely like you for who you are, not for how you look or dress.”
It was in high school, at Florida school Montverde Academy, where Rexy discovered her true talent after performing in several music shows and theater productions. At home, she said, there was always a mix of music playing – from reggae (Bob Marley, Beres Hammond, Buju, Shaggy, etc.) to pop/soft rock/alternative (Cindy Lauper, Foreigner, Lionel Richie, Madonna and Michael Jackson). And she loved Destiny’s Child, Beyoncé, Monica, Sean Paul, Britney Spears and later on Rihanna and Lady Gaga.
While her parents, Rex and Shndrice Rolle, have always been supportive, they felt music would be a passing phase in her life and encouraged her to pursue her other dream, which was to become a lawyer. She completed her undergrad at the University of Ottawa, received her Masters at Lynn University, summa cum laude, and shortly after attended law school. But music maintained its hold on her, and she continued to write songs and record with different producers into law school.
Rexy currently serves as vice president of operations and general counsel at Western Air, her family’s airline business.
She’s launched Freeport-based “Gyal on a Mission”, an initiative created in 2018 to inspire, motivate and mentor young girls between the ages of 12 to 17.
“I know it’s cliché but ‘Gyal on a Mission’ is so important because when you’re from a small country or a small town, your opportunities feel limited. Reaching for the stars means soaring above them and creating the lane for others to do the same.”
Rexy is soaring.
After Hurricane Dorian ravaged the islands of Abaco and Grand Bahama in early September 2019, like most Bahamians, Rexy was faced with the reality that life can change in an instant. Determined to make every second of life impactful, she committed to making her childhood dream a reality.
“I have a picture of myself on dress-up day and even when I was young, I was determined to become a lawyer and a pop artist,” said Rexy.
In 2018 she had tested the “music waters” with the release of the single “Her to Stay”, featuring Jevvo; and she’s now full steam ahead, and with the release of “All Our Lives”, Rexy’s dreams have become reality.