More Than A Pretty Face, Introducing V + ‘Poison’

It’s very rare that I interview new or emerging artists. No shade to them, but music isn’t necessarily my area of expertise. But when I was introduced to a drop-dead artist (co-signed by Cee Lo Green), named V, I thought her stunning look and buzz around the industry alone, would make for a great conversation. Over lunch, we chatted about her history in the industry, leaving a footprint in Atlanta and how she defines her ‘movement’.

the Jasmine Brand: Just give me a little background on how you got started in the music industry?
 I was in a girl group years ago and the manager Kenny Barrell he saw me and place me in the group, this that and the other. I wanted to start building my connections and breaking into the industry, so I was in that group probably like 6 months or so…
TJB: What was the name of it?
 It was called Girlfriend. Not the “Girlfriend” in Atlanta that was under Dallas Austin but it was another ” Girlfriend” based out of LA. In that group, I met Ester Dean, she was a really close friend of mine, she came to be in the group and the group really didn’t just work out and at the end of the day, me and Ester became close and she was like, ” You need to come back to Atlanta with me!” I was like, I don’t have no money and she was like, we gon work it out. So I went there with like $500 in my pocket and started building my relationships in the industry there.
TJB: What do you mean by building your relationships?
Like, I did hooks for different producers. I met Jasper Cameron, he did a lot of songs for Cierra and Lloyd. He actually wanted me to be his artist so we had that union at the right place and time. Then things started happening like a domino effect.
TJB: When did you discover that you could sing?
I never knew when I couldn’t sing. I’ve always been able to sing. As a little girl, I can’t ever remember not having the gift of song. I’ve always sang, I’ve always had that desire, even my mom said I came out wailing.
TJB: So you were in a girl group, you went out to Atlanta…
Yea, I was in a girl group, I went down to Atlanta, I was Jasper’s artist for a while, that didn’t work out and then I got into another girl group called Mahogany and I was in that for a couple of years, maybe 3 and half years and Babyface got wind of us, he loved what he saw, he signed us and then I came back to LA to be closer to him, recording all of that stuff. That didn’t work out so I met Polo the Don, he asked me to start vocal producing his artists.
TJB: What does that mean?
You know, start arranging songs, giving them advice on how to approach song and execute them the right kind of way cause a lot of artist. when you get in the booth and you get busy and you doing this and that, you don’t really have any guidance, you get kinda flustered a little bit so when you have a vocal producer, it makes the process easier.
TJB: So you were kinda coaching them?
Yeah, I worked with everybody from El DeBarge to Rihanna to Patti LaBelle, Lloyd, a lot of people…
TJB: So it that how you were making money?
Yeah, that’s how I was making money surviving but I still had that artist in me and I was like so, I’m not gonna say annoyed but I was frustrated.
TJB: It had to have been frustrating to watch somebody else, especially if you thought you could sing better or maybe deliver better.
Yeah was just frustrating because a lot of times as an artist I felt like I was giving so much of myself and my little isms away and I never want to cheat an artist or not give them the best of me so I was in a conflicting postion. And that was that and I’ve known Timothy Bloom for forever, since Atlanta. We started working together because we always had a connection, this was during the voal producing times. And so one day he was like, let’s just do this song, I had a dream and I want to do it and I think you can do it. I went to his house and we did ” Till the End of Time” and that’s when everything started coming back into focus for me as an artist and being back doing what I love to do and that’s how I got here now. And I just started getting my movement together so to speak so here we are.
TJB: Ok, so let’s talk about the present, what’s your movement?
My movement is letting people understand who I am as a new artist and knowing what I represent. Who I am as an artist, I ama global soul singer, I am a universal soul singer and I wanted people to understand that and not try to put me in a box. I’m just trying to be as transparent as possible so people can understand who I am as an artist.
TJB: How would you define a soul singer?
I mean, I feel like verybody in the world has a soul and I do my music from the heart and from my soul.
For all things V, follower her @ThatGirl_V peep V’s latest video, ‘Poison’ and check her out in the Jasmine Brand Mag’s January 2013 issue:
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Edited by: K. Ava Nash-Jones