Songwriter and Def Jam Recording Artist Reign
Get to know one of Universal Island Def Jam’s recording artist, Reign. She’s a super talented singer with an amazing voice. You might recognize Reign from her popular youtube videos where she showcases her amazing vocal abilities. Briea Chanel was lucky enough to interview Reign and have her tell about her journey.
GM: When did you realize you wanted to pursue a career in music?
R: I always knew I could sing since I was 3 years old. But I knew at the age of 15 that I wanted to take my music career seriously when I got on stage for the first time as a solo artist at Rich South High School talent show. I loved how great it felt to be in front of all of those people, singing my heart out, and how amazing it felt to hear the audience clap and yell for me. Ever since then, I knew I really had the potential to be a big star one day.
GM: How would you describe your music to someone who has never heard it before?
R: My music is soulful and TRUE, It’s young R&B. Anything I have ever written or recorded has been based on a true life experience. I feel like every young girl will be able to relate to my music, and feel that emotional connection to my lyrics.
GM: Thinking back to early childhood what were some of your first experiences with music? What song do you remember most as a child?
R: I remember when I was really little, like age 3 or 4….my grandad used to own a store in Chicago, and he would make me sing to him for free candy. LOL I was so greedy. I remember singing with my child hood best friend Sherri at the Corner Stone Christian School talent show in kindergarten. We sang “This Little Light of Mine”. Lord I was so nervous, but as soon I got on that stage and started singing, I felt free. As a little girl, I always remember singing songs by Whitney Houston, Mariah Carey, Brandy and Lauryn Hill. I always told myself I was going to be just like them when I grew up, they’ve inspired me so much as an artist and as a writer.
GM: What has been the biggest challenge for you?
R: The biggest challenge for me was learning how to accept myself for who I really am. When I was younger I would listen to people tell me who I should be as an artist, and the type of music that I should write and sing. But now that I know who I really am, I’m not afraid to stand my ground, and I think that people will really be able to understand who Reign is when I finally release my new music, and album.
GM: What are some musical projects you have going on right now, if you can share them!?
R: Right now I’m working on my first album. I was signed to Def Jam about a year ago, and ever since I’ve been working and creating a sound that I know people are GOING TO LOVE!!! I’ve been mainly working with Sean Garrett, who’s become like a mentor to me. I really can’t wait to drop this album in 2013!
GM: What do you attribute to your drive as an artist?
R: I feel as if God put me on this earth to sing, so it makes me work even harder towards being a better artist and a better writer. My whole life I’ve seen my parents struggle and fight as hard as they could to give me and my brothers whatever we needed. So I know If I fight hard to make my dream as singer happen, I’ll never have to see my mom and dad struggle again. I love music so much that I’d sleep in the studio and wake up in it every day if I could. My daddy always told me that “hard work out beats talent”….but I say If you’re hard working and talented, you can’t lose.
GM: As an artist, is there anything special you hope to be able to accomplish?
R: I hope to really touch the world with my music. I want to be able to inspire other young women that may have the same goals and dreams as I have. I want to be able to show the world that Chicago isn’t all about the violence and the gangs, we have a lot of talented, smart, and hard working people that are doing positive things out here. I just want my chance, and I owe it to my family and to God to share my gift with the world.