Meet R&B Vocalist: Bri Marie. “Believe in yourself, and support will follow”.

Meet singer/songwriter Bri Marie. The first time I was introduced to her music was when she released her debut project Beginnings back in 2016. Up until recently she was relatively quiet but made it known she’d return in late November with her song “Sleepless” ft. Ballad. Now that she has come back the spotlight, we got the chance to discuss her take on r&b, the debut project, and what we should look forward to!

Enjoy!


Q: How would you describe your music to someone who’s never heard your music?

A: If I had to describe it, I would say “R&B featuring Neo-Soul and Hip Hop”. This question is so hard for me, because I’m inspired by so many genres nearing R&B, such as Neo-Soul, Trap-Soul, Hip Hop, and just contemporary R&B in general. I respect artists that don’t just stick to one lane and hope that I can continue down a route that allows me to experiment however I see fit.

 

Q: Is there anyone else in your family who is musically inclined?

A: My father and uncle (they are twins), have always been musically inclined. Both of them have beautiful voices. My uncle decided to take singing more seriously and has been a part of a gospel group for years now. My father, on the other hand, took to DJing and taught me a lot about equipment and beats when I was a little girl. I take pride in having a good ear for sound due to my dad’s lessons. I also have a lot of talented cousins that I would look up to growing up in the church. They would always blow me away when they sang or played the piano.

 

Bri Marie (4)

 

Q: When you decided to become a musician did you initially have your family’s support? What kind of advice would you give someone who may not have support?

A: Even before I decided to become a musician I had my family’s support, which I am forever grateful for. They had believed in my voice before I did. It has become a little harder to fulfill expectations the deeper I dive into my music and expenses (lol) but regardless I know it’s making them proud.

My advice would be that, not everybody is going to believe in your vision, maybe not even your family. But there is a reason why you love what you love and strive for what you do. If you know in your soul to chase your dreams, success will come. Believe in yourself, and support will follow. My favorite example of this is SZA. I have watched interviews of her explaining how she at some point did disappoint her parents in pursuit of her dreams but nevertheless, she persisted. Now look.

 

 

Q: Your music is predominantly R&B, What do you think about when you hear stuff like “R&B is dying” or “R&B has taken a backseat to Hip Hop?”. Do you agree/disagree with these statements? Why/Why Not?

A: I completely disagree. Hip Hop and R&B has worked hand in hand for as long as I remember. I guess it depends on what market you’re focused on, but there is enough room to enjoy both. I think that those statements are directed to the fact that Trap-Soul is a big genre right now, which I’ve seen defined as “rap-singing over hip hop inspired beats”. I don’t think any genre should be frowned upon, because while it can become oversaturated, beauty comes out of all of them.

Let me stop ranting. R&B is very alive and very wonderful. Daniel Caesar, H.E.R., Sabrina Claudio, Ella Mai, Xavier Omär, Jeremih, Jhene, Asiahn, SZA, Kehlani, Jessie Reyez, Brent Faiyaz, dvsn; I can go on all day. R&B has never been a dying genre, it’s timeless.

 

 

Q: I know that Beyoncé and Jhené Aiko are two major influences in your life, what about them has inspired you?

A: Beyoncé has inspired me constantly to push myself in what I love to be the best I can be. She is one of those artists that has never put herself in one lane. Her talent, voice, and versatility has given her access to any genre that she wishes to pursue (did you hear Daddy Lessons?). Not only that, but her creativity makes her an all around artist, as opposed to just a singer. While I know I will never be Beyoncé, I hope to continually grow and be able to push myself to be better in all aspects of being an artist.

I think Jhené awakened my passion for singing and writing in 2013, because her voice was like mine: soft but effective. Not only that, but I loved the way she wrote and collabed with my favorite rappers, like J.Cole. Her artistry is absolutely beautiful, and while I never thought I could be taken seriously because the dynamic of my voice, I realized through her that uniqueness is just as amazing.

Bri Marie (3)

Q: In 2016, you released your first project Beginnings (EP) were you nervous about how it would be received?

A: Yes. Yes yes yes. I was so scared because even as I released it, I was so critical of every song. I am still in the process of accepting that nothing will ever be perfect, but back then I thought everybody would hear all of the flaws in the songs that I couldn’t shake. Not only that, but Beginnings has no particular direction in terms of genre. However, just being able to share my voice and art ended up being liberating. It’s almost addicting at this point, creating and wanting to share with the world regardless of criticism.

 

Q: One song from the ep in particular, Bedroom Eyes ft. Wordplay has garnered over 24,000 plays since its release. How does it make you feel to know these many people appreciate your music?

A: I really am so appreciative that people love the song. It’s almost surreal, seeing that people are adding me to their sex playlists! I just hope that I can keep creating content that people appreciate.

 

 

Q: My favorite track off is “Wait” because of its relatable lyrics, do you write your music yourself? Where do you find inspiration to write?

A: Yes, other than “Smoke Well” on the EP which was written by featured rapper Dave Langston, I’ve written everything. I remember writing songs when I was 12 about things that I didn’t even know about, and now I think I’ve combined that same creativity with real life experiences to make my music. My songs can range from 100% real experience, to like 50% real experience and 50% creativity. It all depends.

 

Q: The tape also offers a few features so it’s safe to say you’re open to collaborating. Is there anyone in particular that you want to work with?

A: Again, this list could go on for days. First off,  I am always trying to find ways to integrate my friends from college into my ideas, and not even just musically either. I went to an art school and the energy and talent there was unmatched. And as the amazing Issa Rae has stated, its better to build across, as opposed to always trying to build up.

As I’m growing more as an artist, I have encountered so many others that are so talented that I hope to see and collab with in the future. Just to name a few: Grand Khai, NanaBcool, Nate Joel, Dash Machete. One person that strongly comes to mind is Jimi Tents. Ever since Summer ‘17, I have been obsessed with his music. He is ridiculously talented, from his lyrics to his ability to compose a great song. Some others are Jeremih, Xavier Omar, Jhene, Che Ecru, Sonder, Jesse Boykins III and so many more.

 

Q: Do you have a dream collaboration? If so, with who and why?

A: I have never really thought about this before! Maybe because I just dream of working with so many of my idols. I think one that I think about often is with The Weeknd. I think our sounds and vibes would align well.

 

Bri Marie (1)Q: What advice would you give aspiring artists when it comes to creating music and staying focused?

A: First off, BELIEVE IN YOURSELF. There are so many distractions and so much negativity working against you in the process of following your dreams. If you do not believe in yourself and your passions, nothing will get done. I am still in the process of learning this lesson and it is very hard, but with every ounce of confidence you gain, you will be that much closer to achieving your dreams.

Second of all, understand that this path requires an immense amount of sacrifice. Your time, your energy, all your money!!! But don’t think about the nights you stay in instead of going out as you “missing out”. Don’t think about that $700 or more (maybe A LOT more) on your project as a waste. These are just examples obviously, but be mindful that the best thing to invest in is yourself, your dreams.

Third of all, do not be afraid to take advice and collaborate. While it is important to trust yourself and your process, there might be an artist out there that can provide a missing piece to your artistry. Never stop learning, never stop growing, never let your pride (or lack thereof) get in your way.

 

Q: Do you have plans to release new music anytime soon?

A: Yes! I am in the final stages for my single “ICNU”, so that and the video for it is expected to be released in late February-early March. I have had a concept for my next project in mind for months, and now that I am back in the studio, it is only a matter of time for that.

 

 

Q: Is there anything you would like to tell your supporters?

A: Just thank you so much. Since my EP release, I have been doing a lot of soul searching which has made it difficult to focus on creation, but regardless you have all been so supportive. I hope that throughout my journey, I can continue to create music that you can feel and appreciate. Sharing my art has been nothing but wonderful because of you.


 

Make sure to stay updated with Bri: SoundCloud, Twitter, Instagram

To listen to her debut project Beginnings click here.

To listen to her latest single “Sleepless” click here.

Meet Upcoming Singer/Songwriter: Brandy Haze. “. . . As long as you’re passionate and connected to what your singing and saying, there is an audience out there willing to listen.”

Meet LA singer/songwriter Brandy Haze. Perhaps one of my favorite vocalists in the last year, Ms. Haze sings almost effortlessly over every R&B/Hip Hop infused production she’s released. I got the chance to speak with her when this site was only a thought and she has been nothing but supportive of it. Throughout the interview we get to discuss her beginnings, musical influences, and much more.

Enjoy!


Q: For some readers, this may be the introduction to who Brandy Haze is, would you like to introduce yourself?

A: Hi, I’m Brandy Haze singer/songwriter from Los Angeles, CA.

 

 

Q: You’ve been in the industry since late 2014, is music something you’ve always been interested in? When did you decide you wanted to do this professionally?

A: I’ve told everyone since I was two that I would be a singer.  I just didn’t know how to get in a studio or how to work towards a music career until 2014.  I honestly thought you had to already be important to book studio time.  After my Partynextdoor medley, which was the first song I ever recorded professionally I decided I wanted to leave my current job and pursue music.

 

 

 

Q: When you decided to become a musician, did you initially have the support of your family and friends? What kind of advice could you give someone who may not have that support?

A: My parents always supported my music, but always treated it more as something people do as a hobby. They were definitely disappointed when I quit my job, but I think as they see me progress they start to understand that it is possible for me to succeed in music.

 

 

Q: Do you think who you are as a person & who you are as a person  are similar, polar opposites?

A: I think who I am in music is who I am in person. I’m a very blunt and straightforward person, but also the nicest person you’ll ever meet. I think when it comes to relationships, I just know what I’m worth. I don’t tolerate disrespect.

 

 

Q: Who are some of your musical influences? What about them influenced you?

A: My favorite singer is Frank Ocean. I think his ability to paint a picture with words and melody is amazing.  Previous to Frank, as a young girl I fell in love with Toni Braxton, Keyshia Cole, Whitney Houston, and of course Brandy, because they truly represented my definition of an R&B singer.

 

 

PMQ: Your first official song “P:M” was released July 2016, since its release it has accumulated over 25,000 plays; were you nervous about how it would be received? How does it make you feel to know this many people enjoy your music?

A: That’s definitely one of my favorite songs that I put out just to make my start in showing the world I am a creator and not just someone with a voice.

 

 

Q: Since P:M, you’ve consecutively releasing songs such as Conditional, Tell Me (Ft. Jrèy), Day & Night, and Breakfast. Do you think being consistent has helped you gain your fanbase?

A: I definitely feel consistency and quality has helped me gain my fanbase.  I would love to be more consistent and plan on releasing more music more often in 2018.

 

Photographed by: Bree Halt

 

Q: What is your normal process when creating a song? Do you ever hit creative blocks?

A: You can’t really call any creation process normal, because there is no correct way to start. I definitely will hit creative blocks and I might call some friends to try and help or I might just have to keep on living life and then come back to the song later.

 

 

Q: When do you know that a song is complete and ready to be released?

A: It’s definitely just a feeling. Songs should make the listener feel a certain way and when I think the song embodies that feeling that when I release it.

 

 

Q: A majority of your music is considered R&B but you have toyed around with genres such as House, (ex: Day & Night); do you think it is important for artists to explore different genres or should they just “stick to what they’re good at”?

A: I definitely love mixing genres of music and feel I can create any type of music. I think exploring genres is a good thing and can help you relate to more people.

 

 

Q: As mentioned above, your music is typically R&B. For the longest time there was music of the genre being played on the radio; what do you think about the re-emergence of the genre due to artists such as Bryson Tiller, H.E.R, and Sabrina Claudio making it popular again? Do you think it’s a good time for artists trying to pursue a career in the genre?

A: I think R&B is evolving; but I think as long as you’re passionate and connected to what your singing and saying, there is an audience out there willing to listen.

 

 

Q: Who are some of your favorite current artists out right now?

A:  My favorite artist is Frank Ocean. His words and the imagery he uses in his music is phenomenal.

 

Q: Is there anyone you are looking to collaborate with in the near future? Do you have a dream collaboration?

A: I listen to a lot of people on SoundCloud and Apple Music. I would love to collaborate with up and coming artist like Steve Lacy, Hare Squead, and Elhae.

 

 

Q: If you had the ability to choose what decade to start your music career which decade would it be and why?

A: I think right now is perfect, because the internet has opened up a platform for people to be heard and become popular without Labels.

 

 

Q: If you had the opportunity to travel & share your music where would you go?

A: I definitely want to go to London in the next year. I actually have a small fan base there as well. Hopefully I can find an open mic or somewhere to perform at out there.

 

 

Q: Is there a certain event that you would want to perform at?

A: I’d love to perform at Coachella and at Camp Flog Gnaw.  I love Camp Flog Gnaw!

 

 

Q: Is there any advice you can give to aspiring artists?

A: The advice I’d give is always keep going. There is always room for improvement and there is always new fans discovering your new and old music.

 

 

Q: Last but not least, is there anything you want to tell your supporters?

A: Thank you for supporting me and I hope I can continue to release music that inspires or moves you.

 


To stay updated with Brandy make sure to follow her on: Instagram

To hear more music from Brandy follow her on: SoundCloud

Be sure to listen to her latest singles: Old Ways (Prod. ENT) & Oh My (Prod. Gawdbros)

Meet R&B Songstress: Phé. “If you let fear stop you from following your dreams, I promise you will regret it.”

As I am sure I’ve mentioned at least 10x times since launching this website, I am a huge fan of contemporary R&B. It’s been a little over 2 years since Bryson Tiller made it cool to enjoy the genre again rather listening to the same dance-pop music that controlled airwaves for who knows how long. Artists have emerged from all over the place such as Sabrina Claudio, H.E.R, Syd (from the Internet), and now Phé.

Since her debut in 2016 with the song Incredible, the nostalgic slow-jam that can only be compared to the love songs of the late 90s early 2000s era, she has been able to capture the hearts of the thousands who have listened to and shared her music.

I got the chance to catch up with her and see what she’s been up to since her last release back March, her time at Berklee College of Music, and some of her long-term career goals.

Enjoy the interview!


Phe (1)

Q:  For someone who may have never heard your music, how would you describe it?


A: To be completely honest, I feel like I am still in the process of discovering my “sound”. Overall, it has a very R&B oriented vibe, but I think every song focuses on a different element on R&B and the feelings that those elements provoke.

 

 

Q: Is music something you’ve always had an interest in? When did you realize that you wanted to do it professionally?


A: I’ve been singing and performing since I was a little girl, and music was always something I was passionate about, but it wasn’t always something that I believed I could do professionally. It wasn’t until I got into the Berklee College of Music, and started releasing my own music that it became a profession that I could realistically pursue.

 

Q: When you decided to take music on professionally, did you have the support of your family (and friends)?


A: I knew that I was going to do something within the music industry, but I didn’t start actively pursuing a career as a solo artist until I was in my 2nd year of Berklee. I sort of realized that it was time to cut the crap, stop being afraid, and just put 100% of myself into my own music.

Luckily I have a SUPER supportive family and amazingly supportive friends, and they have my back 100% on this crazy journey.

 

Q: You’re now an alumni of Berklee College of Music (in Boston) – how was that experience? Do you think it benefited you to go to a school where you could practice your craft rather than having to go to a school and practice your craft on the side?


A:I definitely feel like I benefited from going to Berklee. I’ve met some of my very best friends there, worked with INSANELY talented people, and learned so much about myself as a person and a musician. I made some of my biggest mistakes (at least for now) while at Berklee, and also some of my biggest achievements which really taught me how to stay grounded, humble and true to myself.

Going to a non-music oriented school was never really a thought in my mind, so had I not gone to Berklee I would have ended up somewhere else where I could study music. I actually wanted to study musical theatre for a really long time, but during my gap year decided that musical theatre was a little too niche, and that I would enjoy a school like Berklee more.

 

Q: What kind of advice could you give someone who may want to go to an artistic school but are too afraid of what others may think?


A: DO IT! No matter what you do in life, there will always be people who will judge you and try to bring you down… but that’s their problem, not yours. Do you. Cause if you let fear stop you from following your dreams, I promise you will regret it.

Phe - Incredible

Q: In 2016, you officially debuted with your song Incredible which has gained over 40,000 plays, 500 likes, and 120 reposts; how does it make you feel to know this many people appreciate your music?


A: I was really really shocked that Incredible got the support that it did. As my 1st single ever I didn’t have any expectations for it, but to see that people were receiving it and relating to it was huge for me.

My only wish is that people can relate to my music and that it will spread and promote change and love, and help people to heal. Growing up, music was a place where I felt like I was being seen for who I really was (rather than just for how I look) and was a space in which I was really heard, and it is my dream to create that same space for young men and women today. Watching people connect with Incredible was super inspiring for me, and sort of reaffirmed and motivated me to keep pushing and keep creating honest music.

 

Q: Incredible can be categorized as a contemporary R&B ballad, what is your opinion on the state of R&B music as a whole right now? Some people claim the genre has taken a backseat to genres such as Hip-Hop and Pop, while others have claimed there will always be a space for it on radio. What are your thoughts?


A: I will forever be a huge R&B fan! There are so many powerful young woman in the genre that have so much to say, and I find that super inspiring. It’s cool because R&B has always been a genre within which I could look to and “see myself”. And now, being a young woman in the genre I get to help young girls see themselves, and can speak inspiring messages to them.

I think the music industry, in general, is really R&B centric right now. It’s interesting to watch the world and the industry interact with that sound and the culture that surrounds it. 

Phe - About Us

Q: Your second song About Us, was released in  early March, can you briefly explain what the song is about?


A: About Us is about time in a relationship I had — that wasn’t actually romantic — where I felt that the relationship itself wasn’t really about the two of us, but rather it felt like it was about this other person using me as a way of making up for things that they maybe weren’t receiving in their other relationships. And I was trying to be there for this person and help them, but felt like I was being manipulated and used, and like I wasn’t fully being trusted and couldn’t fully trust them.

 

Q: Do you write all your music? Where do you find inspiration to write? Have you ever had a creative block?

A: I do write all my music, and love being able to use that as a creative outlet to sort through all the stuff in my head. Two of the songs off the EP are co-written with some amazing writers that I went to Berklee with. That was a really different process for me and is still something that I am working on being totally comfortable with, but is definitely something I want to explore more.

I’ve actually been going through a bit of a creative block since moving to LA about 7 months ago. It’s been a huge overwhelming change and I think it’s left me a bit scared of what will come out if I really let go and just write. But since the start of the new year, I’ve been challenging myself to do exactly that, and while it’s been challenging and not always fun, it’s also been super rewarding.

 

Q: Are there any artists that you look to for inspiration when creating music?

A: I definitely get inspired by other people’s work. I find that more often than not, I am inspired by the honest and unapologetic truths that young artists are speaking and the ways in which they are now choosing to use their platform.

But musically, I think artists like SZA, NAO, Sabrina Claudio, Jorja Smith, Daniel Caesar, and Billie Eilish have created what I really interesting musical landscapes for themselves.

Then of course there are the women I grew up listening to, like  Lauryn Hill, Erykah Badu, and Sade who are such powerful and wise women and who definitely influence me daily as I grow and become the artist and person I hope to be.

 

Q: Who are some of your favorite current artists?

A: I’ve been on a bit of a kick right now, and have just been trying to discover a lot of new music and artists. But my go-to listens are SZA, Kehlani, Jorja Smith, Daniel Caesar, Sabrina Claudio, and Black Party.

 

Q: Are there any artists that you would want to work with in the future? Do you have a dream collaboration?

A: I would absolutely love to work with Daniel Caesar on a project! His musical style and poetic truth is so beautiful. I would be so honored to create music with him.

I would also love to work with Stint — a Canadian producer who is also from Vancouver (shoutout Vancity) — and GRADES!

 

Phe - Performance

Q: You have performed live on several occasions, what do you do to prepare for the stage? Do you have any tips?

A: REHEARSE! Ahaha

No but seriously, I hate feeling unprepared, and always strive to put on the best show that I can. But besides that, a shot never hurt, to loosen the nerves a bit.

 

Q: If you could go on a tour with three other R&B artists (could be of past or present) who would they be (and why)?

A: I think I would almost prefer to go on tour with someone who doesn’t do R&B because that would create a really interesting energy and give the audience a flavor of different things. But if I was to go on tour with R&B artists it would be the following.

Solange — I’ve been interning for her team the past couple months, and absolutely love her artistry and her music. It would be an honor to share the stage with her and to be in a creative space with her.

The Internet — I LOVE their sound and vibe. It’s super down to earth and groovy, and I just feels good to listen to. I saw them live at Camp Flog Gnaw Fest in LA this past weekend, and they were really cool!

NAO — She’s got such funky, shiny sounds and I think it would be super fun to share a stage with her. Her music hold so much anticipation and release, and I think that our energies would bounce off each other really well.

 

Q: Is there any place you would want to perform at? (Ex. Essence Festival, Coachella)

A:I really really want to play music festivals. (Afropunk, FYF, Osheaga, Coachella, Essence, Made in America etc)

 

Q: You have yet to release a full project, is that something that you are working towards dropping in 2018?

A: I’m actually finishing up my debut EP, which I will be releasing this spring.  I’ve been working on it for WAY longer than I had expected, but these songs are important to me, and my goal has always been to create a work of art that is meaningful, so I am just trying to take the time needed in order to do that.

 

Q: In 20+ years when you’re looking back at your career, what are some career milestones would you have wanted to reach?

A:  I want to reach people with my music, and give them a channel through which they can find peace and explore vulnerability — whatever that may mean to them. And I guess, for me, that would look like going out on stage, looking out into the audience and having everyone sing my music with me, all of us completely present and experiencing a moment of pure joy together.

 

Q: Last but not least, is there anything you would like to tell your supporters?

A: THANK YOU! It really means the world to have people supporting you and enjoying your music. It’s really powerful to see people enjoying and resonating with something that you’ve created.


To keep up with Phe make sure to follow her on Soundcloud, Twitter, and Instagram

To hear her debut song Incredible click here.

To her her latest song About Us click here.

The New Faces of: R&B (2018 Version)

I don’t know if this post marks the start of a new series, or if it’s more of a once in a blue moon – but I wanted to share with you, some of my favorite upcoming artists. R&B is a genre I have gravitated towards since young, especially once I began songwriting. Since 2011, the genre has really picked up thanks to artists like Jhene Aiko & The Weeknd (who are also pioneers of the Alternative R&B genre: PBR&B). Although this list is relatively short (4 artists) these are the ones I’ve noticed making their name known in the R&B lane in the last year.
Hopefully you check out these artists & enjoy them as much as I do!


SiR-Darryl-Farris-Queen-vid-still-2017-billboard-1548

1. SiR

SiR is an American singer-songwriter and engineer based in Inglewood California. Known for his association with Top Dawg Entertainment as well as his projects such as HER and HER TOO, I decided to put him first on the list because although he is known throughout the industry, personally I feel that his talents are underappreciated. Since the start of his professional career in 2012 he has worked with artists such as Jill Scott, Tyrese, Melanie Fiona – and even with all of that prestige behind him, he is still relatively unknown.

On January 19, he released his second full-length album (first under TDE) November. The album has been reviewed by sources such as Highsnobiety and UPROXX, sources describing it as “dream-like” and “avante-garde rap”.

I had the chance to listen to the album the day it released and I would highly recommend listening to Dreaming of Me and Better (simply because they’re my favorites as of right now).

If you happen to listen to his sound and enjoy it you can find most, if not all of his projects on Apple Music and Spotify.


Phe (1)

2. Phé

Phé is a Canadian-born R&B singer/songwriter currently based in Los Angeles. I came across her around late 2016 when she released her debut song Incredible. In a time where most artists in general are accustomed to singing over trap beats it was somewhat refreshing to hear someone who identifies as an r&b artist sing over a contemporary r&b beat – (think: Beyonce’s Dangerously In Love or Maxwell’s BLACKsummers’night).

Now, I love (and I mean love) listening the every genre that have come out of R&B (neo-soul, pbr&b, etc.) but something about contemporary r&b just feels . . . comfortable – at least to me.

Phé is one of those artists that I would throw into the conversation if I were talking about artists like Sabrina Claudio, H.E.R, Janine, etc. I got the chance to interview her (that interview will be released soon) and talk about her music beginnings, and how she personally felt about the state of R&B saying:

“I’m really f*cking with R&B right now. There are so many powerful young woman in the genre that have so much to say, and I find that super inspiring. . .”

Out of all the artists on the list, I’m most excited to see what the future has in store for her. 

Make sure to listen to her songs:

. . . and be sure to follow her on: Instagram, Twitter, and SoundCloud


K-Si

3. K-Si Yang

K-Si Yang is an American singer based out of Florida – most known for his song “Real” which has accumulated over 89,000 plays since its release in 2016. If you enjoy listening to artists like Jacquees, Austin Lam, Jordon Hollywood (they also have a collaboration together) then you should add K-Si to the list.

Make sure to follow him on Instagram & SoundCloud.


LOLO4. Lolo Zouaï

I’ve mentioned Lolo more than enough times for you guys to have an idea of what her music sounds like but I’ve never gone into detail about who she is. Lolo, originally from France, is an upcoming singer/songwriter currently based in New York City.

According to her interview with Valfre she’s been writing music for over half her life so it makes sense that all of the music she’s released thus far is beyond exceptional. She also mentions that her lyrics are mostly based off personal experiences and that she hopes to be empowering for young women all over the world.

Her music has been described as “authentic”, “melancholic” and Songwriters Hall of Fame has even described her as having the “uncanny ability to convey her vulnerabilities while showing equal amounts of fearlessness”.

Make sure to listen to her latest song “Blue” released last week.

To stay updated be sure to follow her on: SoundCloud, Twitter, and Instagram


 

 

Meet Canadian R&B Songstress: Staasia Daniels. “I don’t believe there’s a blueprint for success.”

If you’ve been keeping up with the site you know Wednesday’s are reserved for artists based outside of the U.S. I’ve got a lot in store for you readers specifically when it comes to international music but the first artist I wanted to introduce you to is Staasia Daniels.

If you know me (or if you’ve noticed every other artist I posted thus far), you already know that I am an avid fan of R&B music. If you listen to artists such as H.E.R, Janine, and SiR — I would seriously consider you add Staasia to your list.

In this interview I got the chance to discuss with the Toronto native about her projects, performing, and where she sees her career in the future.

 

Enjoy!

 

 


 

Q: For the readers who may not be aware of who you are and what you do, would you like to introduce yourself?

A: Hola, I go by the name of Staasia Daniels. I am an artist/entertainer who is sleepless in Toronto. I create how I feel, while I heal, and hope that those who have ears will hear, and those who can feel, will feel. Vibe & feel.

 

 

 

Q: When did you first discover your love for music?

A: Oh man! I’m not sure of what age exactly, but my mother says it started around age 5ish. I vaguely remember hearing Whitney Houston, Shabba Ranks, Bee Gees and so much more growing up and it just… idk, it does something on the inside of me that is indescribable.

 

 

Q: Is music a career your family supported? What kind of advice would you give someone who may not have that support?

A: My music career is 100% supported by my family, my mom & sisters come to my shows often, and I am grateful! To those who may not have their families support, from observation, I can tell it hurts, but they just don’t understand it because we can be doing this for so long and not see a penny. Use that as motivation to keep working and know that they WILL come along.

 

 

Q: Are there any artists that made you want to become a singer? If so, what about them attracted you to being an entertainer?

A: There isn’t a specific artist that made me realize I wanted to be singer, I just knew I wanted to be one. I didn’t really discover the difference between an entertainer and a singer ‘til much much later in life.

I remember auditioning for a showcase and not being able to move due to being so nervous, I couldn’t even release a steady note. Through practice and gaining confidence I was able to then sing steady notes, but I couldn’t move, and it was just boring to me to walk back and forth singing. I have so much personality off stage, I wanted to show that, but I didn’t really know how!

Anyways, I remember watching female & male R&B groups not just performing, but entertaining their audience through dance etc. The experience I felt is what I wanted to give people when I hit the stage. I’ve come far, but still have a long way to go. hahahaha.

 

 

Q: If you had the chance to collaborate with any artist who would it be (and why)?

A: I really want to work with Pharrell. I feel like he can make sense of my vague ideas and bring something out of me I don’t even know is there!

 

 

Q: You happen to be from Toronto, Canada where an abundance of talent has come from in recent years; is there anyone from there that you would want to work with in the future?

A: Yasssss, S/O to ALL Toronto creatives, especially the hardworking women! There isn’t anyone specific that I’d like to work with, just anyone passionate, anyone talented, and anyone willing to work with me.

 

 

Q: The first time we heard you was back in 2014 with the release of “Back To The Basics” — were you nervous about how it would be received?

A: Hahaha, Back To Basics, was a remix/cover to Bas ft J. Cole “My Nigga Just Made Bail” It was a random, free Wednesday night freestyle. My first original song was entitled “Tonight (iLike)” omg, a pop song! I’m crying!

 

Staasia-Daniels-Hidden-Gems

 

Q: Skip to August 2016 and the release of your first EP Hidden Gems is released, earning over 60,000 plays in total; Does it surprise you to know how many people take the time to appreciate your music?

A: 60,000 really? Dang, not to bad for a nobody like me! I am so grateful to know that people were not only listening to it, but it was anticipated by many. People I didn’t even know! I still get messages saying “ You’re album is still on repeat!” I am so humbled, so so so humbled. Wow.

 

 

Q: Do you have a personal favorite off the EP? If so, which song and why?

A: My favourite changes every time, but right now, I’d say my favs are a tie between WYL & Never Fade.

WYL” because it’s the organic sound that actually LOVE to sing on. Although 90’s and modern day R&B is dopetastic, there’s so much of the same feeling, same vibe floating around. That nostalgic instruments feeds me in a different way.

Never Fade”, because it exudes the feels naturally. Brings me back to 90s R&B when verses were filled with Love and passion, and 90’s music will always be dopetastic! My addition to it just makes it all better. We’re coming up on 3 years since I released that song and it STILL knocks, and still has the crowd, and STILL makes me cry.

 

 

Q: With every song you create is it harder to remain creative? Do you go “we’ll see how it goes” or “it can’t be any less than perfect”?

A: That’s a great question! I wouldn’t say it’s “harder” to remain creative, but it’s always like “ok SD, say something different than the last one” or “Give a different perspective” but sometimes it doesn’t always work that way, because in reality, like many, I’ve gone through some of the same bullshit over and over and over again.

 

 

Q: The same year you also got the chance to perform at TDot Fest and Atlanta’s A3C festival, how was that experience?

A: Performing is always spectacular. and when it’s out of the city/country it’s oodles of fun and a shocker at the same time! These people don’t know who you are, yet they give out so much love and crowd participation!

1+2 EP

Q: In 2017, you released three songs followed by your sophomore project “1+2” . — Do you feel that in order to be successful an artist needs to be consistent? If so, what do you think is the importance of consistency?

A: I don’t believe there’s a blueprint for success. You can be consistent for 6 months and something pops off for you, it can also take you 3 years of consistency to pop off. It’s so unknown!

For me, the importance of consistency is also in the art of letting go of material. I need to take a lot more no’s that’ll lead to my yes and just put out music I believe in. I have pockets of consistency, but not necessarily enough, in my eyes, which is due to lack of resources, but… it’s not going to stop me.

 

Q: Going into this latest EP was the process different from that during the creation of Hidden Gems? Was it easier to write for this project? Did you suffer a creative block?

A: The 1+2 EP wasn’t much different at all, but it was harder because I only wanted 3 songs on it yet I had so many just sitting.

Moretimes” was supposed to be on the EP to follow, but I made changes to it, and decided to package it with the other two. I always create/record songs for the sake of staying creative and keep juices flowing to ensure no creative blocks occur.

 

Q: What kind of advice could you give someone looking to start a career in music? What are some lessons you’ve learned since you’ve started?

A: My advice to ANYONE looking to start ANYTHING, is super cliche, but it’s so real… put yourself on when ‘the people’ won’t. There is no such things as “the right time” so create it, and once you get rolling, be prepared to be consistent. If everyone around you likes everything you do, you’ve gotta switch it up. Do everything you think you should do.

 

Q: If you had the chance to decide when you started your career (ex: specific decade, time in music) would you?

A: As amazing as this sounds, idk that I’d want to choose or even toy with that. Why? Because everything that has happened to me, as aggravating and gut punching as the struggle has been, it’s made me who I am. It’s allowed me to grow and bring things out of me I never thought I could. I used to listen to so many wrong people telling me how I should sound, and how I should sing that I just, wasn’t happy but- it had to happen.

 

 

Q: The internet has allowed people from all over the world to interact and be influenced by each other. Where would you be shocked to hear that people listen to your music?

A: I’m shocked whenever people in Dubai message me on IG discovering my music, it’s so amazing but it’s definitely the goal.

 

Q: When you look back on your career in 20-30 years; what career highlights would you like to achieve?

A: 20-30 years is a loooooong time! I know that things need to happen in stages so I’ll just list a few things. Top 10 billboard charting project, Top 5 billboard charting, and a Number 1 billboard album.

Writing for several established artists new & old. Opening my foundation for little Black girls. Grammy nods, Grammy Best New Artist winner (hahaha) Joining an established successful artist tour, going on tour with my label mates. Put- jeez, so much, I’ll stop there. hahaha

 

Q: Should we be prepared for anything in 2018?

A: Be prepared for EVERYTHING! I am no longer holding back on the things I’ve been so afraid to do. For years I’ve wanted to dress a certain way, do a certain style, write certain lyrics etc. It’s uncomfortable, but I like it! I am going through a transition, so don’t be confused by it. Art doesn’t always have to “make sense” you just need to FEEL something. I’m emptying out what I have and it’ll lead me to where…. well, we’ll see.

 

Q: Last but not least, is there anything you want to tell your supporters?

A: For those of who who have been around, I am so grateful, thank you! I love you! You are super important to me, and always will be! You help us unknown indie artists be recognized by curators, labels, blogs etc. To the new supporters/fans whenever you come across a song you like, please don’t hesitate to share it and let us know. The people need to know that other people care about what we do.