“You best believe I had my struggles and don’t think that I’m new/I ain’t no overnight success ya’ll, I been paying my dues/I ain’t new to this!”
2014, like every year is going to be different. Through this game called music I’ve learned many things. One is that change, good or bad, is coming whether you plan for it or not. So instead of making resolutions, I’m just going to live…by my choices, my beliefs, my intentions, my own power. Ten days in, my first choice is to share my story with those I call my friends and fans. As a songwriter, I tell the stories of others or at least stories to which others can relate. Today, I tell you mine.
No matter where I perform, and each time I’ve released a song or album, I always get the same question: “Who are you and why aren’t you famous?” The truth, I don’t know. I guess some of it’s been music industry politics and the rest of it can be chalked up to the cliché…it just ain’t my time. What I can tell you is this, I LOVE music! And I’ve had the blessing and good fortune to be able to enjoy it as a listener, writer, recording artist and performer. Music lives in my blood, and has for as long as I can remember.
Discovered as a child by my grandmother, yep grandma heard a brother singing and took me straight to church and the children’s choir. By the time I reached high school I was singing with bands, and in college I began writing. As an adult I’ve had some incredible experiences, some many aspiring artists would sell their souls for. They include an ASCAP Award for excellence in songwriting, performances at Sundance Film Festival, on five continents and in some of the hottest venues in New York City, writing with hit-makers in Nashville, New York and Los Angeles, performing and arranging vocals on albums with some of the biggest names in music, licensing songs to film and television, songs recorded by music industry hit makers in Jazz, Pop, Hip Hop and R&B and a song of the year nomination for gospel’s equivalent to a Grammy, the Dove Award. Yep, the scent of fame has surrounded me, it just hasn’t stuck in the way we all expected.
Oh, I’ve got stories! My musical journey has been connected in interesting ways from Beyonce to Will Smith and Jada Pinkett-Smith, Chaka Khan to Whitney Houston, American Idol runner-up and actress Katherine McPhee to Country music darling, Rissi Palmer, from Clive Davis to Queen Latifah, from filmmaker Roger Bobb to songwriter Wendy Waldman, and from P. Diddy to actress Jurnee Smollett. Not bad for a “Bk all day” brother. That’s Brooklyn, for those of you who don’t know. But I’ll tell you this, I’m going to keep writing and singing and I hope you’ll keep listening.