Otep Shamaya

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Otep Shamaya
Otep Performing at Reggie's Rock Club in Chicago.
February 22, 2010.
Background information
Genres Alternative metal, nu metal, rap metal
Occupation(s) Singer-songwriter, actress, poet, writer, painter, rapper
Instruments Vocals
Labels Capitol (2001–2007)
KOCH (2007-2009)
Victory (2009-Present)
Associated acts Otep, Imaginary Friend
Website Otep's blog

Otep Shamaya is an American singer-songwriter, actress, poet, writer, and painter. She is best known as the lead vocalist of the metal band Otep.

Early life[edit]

According to an interview in November 2007 with Metal Underground, Otep's name came from her mother's interest in Egyptian history. In the same interview Otep spoke about growing up in Los Angeles California. Becca from Metal Underground asked Otep, Growing up in LA, what was that like for you? Otep replied: I was subjected to a lot of violence and poverty that I don't really care to focus on too much because I'm trying to get past that through art and music.[1]


Otep Shamaya made her debut in 2000 with her band Otep, and released the full length albums Sevas Tra (June 2002), House of Secrets (July 2004), The Ascension (October 2007), Smash the Control Machine (August 2009), Atavist (April 2011) and Hydra (January 2013).

Shamaya has been featured on HBO's television series Def Poetry. Otep is featured in The Hobbit: Battle of the Five Armies as a voice over actor for Creatures.[2] The first printed collection of poetry and illustrations by Otep Shamaya was made available to the public in November 2006 exclusively on Lulu.com. In August 2007, the e-book Little Sins, her first electronic collection of printed poems and illustrations was placed in book form.


Shamaya's song "Menocide" was condemned by Robert Franklin of Fathers & Families for promoting the murder of men. The lyrics of the song suggest men are "infectious human waste" and that those who are oppressed should "give death to them" and commit "menocide".[3] In her blog she responded to the criticism that her work was "hateful towards men" by saying: "I don’t see it that way. Indeed, I am an emotional person and I use angry words, but they are aimed (mostly) at IDIOTS and MONGRELS. Perhaps YOU equate men with the likes of those scourge. But not me. I am an equal opportunity dispenser of rage. Ha!"[4] Bold text

Personal life[edit]

Otep is openly lesbian[5] and a vegetarian.[6] She is known to be an advocate of animal rights. Shamaya also spoke at the 2008 Democratic National Convention.[7]


Studio albums[edit]

Year Album details Peak chart positions
US[8] US Ind.[8] FRA[9] UK[10]
2002 Sevas Tra
  • Released: June 18, 2002
  • Label: Capitol/EMI (C2-33346)
  • Format: CD, DI
145 86
2004 House of Secrets
  • Released: July 27, 2004
  • Label: Capitol/EMI (C2-91043)
  • Format: CD, DI
93 102
2007 The Ascension
  • Released: October 30, 2007
  • Label: Capitol/EMI (C2-11653)
  • Format: CD, LP, DI
81 6
2009 Smash the Control Machine
  • Released: August 18, 2009
  • Label: Victory (529)
  • Format: CD, DI
47 6
2011 Atavist
  • Released: April 26, 2011
  • Label: Victory
  • Format: CD, DI
61 10
2013 Hydra
  • Released: January 22, 2013
  • Label: Victory
  • Format: CD, DI
"—" denotes a release that did not chart.

Extended plays[edit]

Year Album details
2001 Jihad
  • Released: June 19, 2001
  • Label: Capitol/EMI (C2-33725)
  • Format: CD
2005 Wurd Becomes Flesh
  • Released: 2005
  • Format: CD


Year Title US
2002 "Blood Pigs" Sevas Tra
2004 "Warhead" House of Secrets
2007 "Ghostflowers" The Ascension
"March of the Martyrs"
2008 "Confrontation"
2009 "Smash the Control Machine" 28 Smash the Control Machine
2010 "Rise, Rebel, Resist"
2011 "Fists Fall" Atavist
"Not to Touch the Earth"
"—" denotes a release that did not chart.


  • Otep - Abominations (2004)
  • Otep - Live Confrontation (2009)

Music videos[edit]

Year Title
2001 "T.R.I.C."
2002 "Blood Pigs"
2004 "Warhead"
"Buried Alive"
2007 "Ghostflowers"
2008 "Confrontation"
"Crooked Spoons"
2009 "Smash the Control Machine"
2010 "Rise, Rebel, Resist"
"Run for Cover"
2011 "Fists Fall"
"Baby's Breath"
2013 "Apex Predator"


  1. ^ "Otep Shamaya From Otep Interviewed - in Interviews". Metalunderground.com. Retrieved 2015-03-30. 
  2. ^ "The-Hobbit-The-Battle-of-the-Five-Armies - Cast, Crew, Director and Awards". NYTimes.com. 2014-12-17. Retrieved 2015-03-30. 
  3. ^ "Blog Archive". GlennSacks.com. 2009-01-09. Retrieved 2013-12-05. 
  4. ^ Danger. "eye sea … | I'm Not A Monster". Web.archive.org. Archived from the original on 2009-05-03. Retrieved 2013-12-05. 
  5. ^ Scott Marti, Kris (January 31, 2005). "Interview with Otep Shamaya". AfterEllen.com. 
  6. ^ Shamaya, Otep (April 17, 2008). "Might Makes Write: Otep Reveals the Passions of the Poet". MTV. 
  7. ^ "Otep smashes the control machine". Nl.newsbank.com. Retrieved 2015-03-30. 
  8. ^ a b "Otep - Charts & Awards - Billboard Albums". Allmusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved 2011-01-17. 
  9. ^ "Discographie Otep" (in French). Hung Medien. Retrieved 2009-07-07. 
  10. ^ Zywietz, Tobias. "Chart Log UK: The O - Ozric Tentacles". Zobbel. Retrieved 2009-07-07. 

External links[edit]