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Una Isu

About this Artist

Miguel Villegas Ventura, also known as Una Isu, is a trilingual Ñuu Savi (Mixtec) rap artist. He was born in Nùù Yukù-San Miguel Cuevas, Juxtlahuaca, Oaxaca. He arrived in Fresno, California when he was seven years old with his mother and three older siblings. His family worked in the agricultural fields remaining close to their migrant Mixtec community. While attending school Una Isu saw the stigma of speaking his native language in a foreign place and culture. Growing up in the city of Fresno, not knowing other people who looked or spoke like him, made him realize that he was different. This influenced Una Isu heavily as he began to think his own language was not valuable. For a period of time then, he stopped speaking his language thinking it was an impediment to assimilate into an “American life.” When he was twelve years old he discovered rap music being exposed to Chicanoband gangster rap. Listening to an array of rappers and content made him realize that rap music could go beyond a particular group, culture, race, and message.

Photo credit: Laura Pardo Photography