THISISRNB INTERVIEWS

Exclusive: Elijah Blake Talks Personal Single “6,” Upcoming EP ‘Drift,’ Relationship with Keyshia Cole, Bono & Kanye West Collaboration, Progressive R&B and Much More!

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One thing more difficult than obtaining your dreams is building up the courage to actually follow them. Although the public looks at your success as obtained overnight, the long road and lonely moments prove different. While fans of R&B crooner Elijah Blake may feel as if his stardom has come to light more recently, the hardworking singer-songwriter has been on his grind for quite some time now.

Penning tracks for many of your favorite artists, it wasn’t until his angelic voice was heard on Rick Ross’ 2012 single, “Presidential” and again on The Game’s “Freedom” that the attention began to center around the talented star. Taking the opportunity to release his debut EP Bijoux 22 the same year, Elijah had finally found his time to shine as his own artist.

Now, working with some of the top stars on the year’s most anticipated projects, Elijah Blake is ready to get things moving for the biggest star of them all…himself. With plans to release his dark and mysterious EP Drift this fall and his debut album Songs About Melody next year, Elijah has grabbed the attention of R&B lovers everywhere. With releases such as “Towers of Tokyo,” the talked about “6,” and the newly released “Wicked,” one thing we do know is that he has no plans of disappointing.

Finding some time to chat with ThisIsRnB, the talented artist let’s us in on the creation of his projects, working with the big stars, his journey into being his own artist and more. So, grab your popcorn and get settled because this is definitely one you don’t want to miss!

Catch the exclusive interview below!

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Exclusive: DJ Mustard Talks R&B Influences, Favorite Artists, Impact of His Music

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Brisk Iced Tea recently brought their Brisk Bodega summer music series to New York City. The special event, held at The Music Hall of Williamsburg, included performances from Roc Nation recording artist and producer DJ Mustard along with Bodega Bamz, Deniro Farrar and DJ Mode. The New York event was the third stop of the Brisk Bodega summer music series, which includes a six-city tour featuring up-and-coming and established talent, curated by Mustard.

ThisisRnB TV caught up with the hitmaking producer prior to his set to talk about the influence R&B has had on him and his music. The L.A. native shared his favorite R&B artists of the moment, some of his favorite records and artists from the past, how his sound is impacting R&B and today’s music in general, and who he is feeling from New York right now.

DJ Mustard will be releasing his debut album 10 Summers on August 12 via Google Play, and it will be available at all digital retailers worldwide on August 26. The 12 track project includes features from Lil Wayne, Rick Ross, Jeezy, YG, Ty Dolla $ign, TeeFlii, Eric Bellinger and many more.

Check out our exclusive interview now below:

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Exclusive: Verse Simmonds Talks Chris Brown’s New Album X, Journey To Writing Fame, State of R&B and More!

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Being an artist in the industry isn’t the only thing that makes you a celebrity nowadays. In the past, songwriters and producers were seldom mentioned to the outside public and it was left up to the singers to make the creation gain popularity. Now, producers and songwriters have stepped from behind the scene and in some cases, have become even more popular than the artist who performs the song. Take those like The-Dream, Pharrell and DJ Mustard. Although each one is now an artist on their own, they all got their careers started behind the scenes and grew to become some of the industry’s most sought after writers and producers.

The same story has become the case for famed songwriter, Verse Simmonds. With credits ranging from R.Kelly and Rihanna to now penning three of Chris Brown’s current releases off of his anticipated upcoming album X, Verse is clearly making his name in the game as like his predecessors. Many might remember Verse from his 2009 club hit, “Buy You A Round (Up and Down),” but it was in 2011 that his fame skyrocketed with the single, “Boo Thang” featuring Kelly Rowland.

Now, three years after his biggest hit, the singer-songwriter-producer is stepping from behind the scenes again to chat with ThisIsRnB. Discussing his current success with singles for Justin Bieber, Chris Brown and Usher, the impressive artist let us in on just where he thinks R&B is now and is going next, his personal artistry, and just what Verse Simmonds has to offer for R&B fans everywhere.

Get into the interview below!

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Exclusive: Mack Wilds Talks New Vibe Cover, Current Sound of R&B, Being An Actor Turned Singer, His Album & More

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Stepping into the entertainment industry is already a difficult task for any aspiring artist. What’s even more difficult though, is trying to move over from one area to the next. In the past when actors have tried to add singing or rapping to their resumes, it very seldom works out. However, when a talent prevails like Jamie Foxx, Tyrese, Jared Leto, Justin Timberlake, or new school triple threat acts like Zendaya and Trevor Jackson, we often forget that they were even known for acting or singing in the first place.

Somewhat of the same case can be said for famed actor Mack Wilds. Receiving fame in 2006 for his role as Michael Lee in the HBO hit series The Wire, Tristan – who uses Mack as his stage name – has been a well-known actor starring in top productions such as Red Tails and 90210. Now, eight years after the start to his most famous role, the New York native is becoming known for something a little different.

Receiving a Grammy nomination for his debut album New York: A Love Story, Mack Wilds has gained a large amount of critical acclaim for his ability to jump in and out of both sides of the entertainment industry. Truly talented in all arenas, the 24-year-old actor turned singer/rapper turned heads when his debut single, “Own It” hit airwaves in 2013.

Although it’s now just a short year, full album, dope singles and a Vibe Magazine cover later, the singer is taking on many heights in his career and owns it all well. Taking a little time to chat with ThisIsRnB about his current ventures, Mack is ready to take over 2014 and the years to come. Discussing his new Vibe Magazine cover, upcoming music plans, current sound and more, this interview will surely let you in on just who Mack Wilds really is.

Jump into the exclusive interview below:

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Exclusive: Day 26 Talk ‘The Return’ EP, Remaining As The Original Group, Current State of R&B & More!

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In the ’90s, R&B was in its prime. With groups such as Jodeci, Silk, and Boyz II Men supplying us with quality, authentic music, it’s easy to remember just why we have become obsessed with the sounds of that time. Unfortunately though, more than 20 years have passed and we still haven’t been able to replicate the same feeling from music that we got back then.

That was, however, until we met the men of Day 26. Formed in 2007 by Sean “Diddy” Combs via his Making the Band series,  Rob, Willie, Brian, Que and Mike erupted onto the scene with their big personalities and even bigger voices. Delivering two classic albums that hosted a number of tracks such as “So Good” and “Since You’ve Been Gone,” we watched wide eyed as the five talented members shot to stardom.While the years have brought them much fame to celebrate from, the group hit a few snags as well. From losing Que, to an all out disbandment, R&B almost lost one of its most talented contemporary acts.

Now, two years after their official disbandment, the lovable group is back and ready to do it right. Packed with all five original members, Que, Willie, Rob, Mike and Brian are wasting no time singing their way back into our hearts. Returning with the new single, “Bullsh*t” and Silk cover song “Lose Control,” Day 26 has returned from their hiatus to give us what we’ve been missing…the true essence of R&B.

While prepping for the release of their upcoming EP The Return, ThisIsRnB.com got the chance to chop it up with the fellas and discuss plans for new music, the EP, reuniting as a band and much more.

Check out the exclusive interview below!

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Exclusive: Mya Talks New EP’s ‘With Love’ & ‘Sweet XVI,’ Today’s Music, Taking Care of Self

R&B songstress Mya made a surprise comeback this year with the release of two EP projects, February’s ‘With Love‘ and April’s ‘Sweet XVI.’  The singer/actress has mostly focused on her overseas fan base over the past 6 years, releasing 2 albums on Japan’s Manhattan Records.

Now back on the scene in the States, ThisisRnB TV caught up with the 34-year-old in Los Angeles for a new interview. As lovely and sweet as she’s always been, the soft-spoken artist talked to us about celebrating 16 years in music with the new EP’s, and why she didn’t want to wait any longer to give fans some new music.

Mya shared her take on being an independent artist and navigating today’s ever changing music industry, how she feels about music now and the fusion of multiple genres, working with rising R&B singer/songwriter Eric Bellinger on their duet single “Same Page,” taking care of herself through diet and fitness, and her latest acting projects.

Check out the interview above, and you can pick up Mya’s new EP’s on iTunes now.


Exclusive: Anthony Lewis Talks “Candy Rain,” New Music, The Perfect Date & Much More

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Hearing one of your favorite songs from your childhood being remade as an adult can often cause a riot in the dedicated fan. As music lovers, we have a tendency to want to preserve the originality and initial feeling that we get from a song that we’ve grown to love. Hearing it remade to fit the current times can take us on a whirlwind of emotions and usually, that involves a few derogatory remarks as well as ugly facial expressions.

Going against the grain and creating a remake that the new and old-schoolers can love, 17-year-old Anthony Lewis is on his way to the top of the charts. Releasing his version of the Soul For Real 90′s smash hit “Candy Rain,” the young California native is no newby to how the industry moves. With both of his parents having names for themselves as singers from the ’90s era, it was only natural that the buzzing star followed the same path. Now going all out to make his dream become a reality, Anthony Lewis has been doing all that he can to hone in on his skills as a multi-talented artist.

We recently spoke with the heartthrob-in-the-making about his journey thus far, what fans can be expecting from him, how he approaches a lady and more.

You’ll fall in love with all that the singer has to offer after reading our interview with him. Get to know Anthony Lewis below:

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Exclusive: Rico Love Talks Early Career, ‘Discrete Luxury’ EP & Artistry

Rico Love is just now starting to become a familiar name to the mainstream public, thanks to his breakout Top 10 hit “They Don’t Know,” but the Louisiana born artist/producer is a great example of how real success never happens overnight.  Starting out as a rapper, Richard “Rico Love” Butler, began pursuing his dreams while attending Florida A&M University, going back and forth to Atlanta to network and work with burgeoning producers the Corna Boyz. Through this relationship Rico landed a record deal with Usher’s US Records and eventually penned his first big song, “Throwback,” from the diamond-selling Confessions album.

Putting his own music to the side, Rico immersed himself into songwriting and producing, building up a massive catalog of hits for the likes of Beyoncé, Usher, Nelly, Kelly Rowland, Trey Songz and many more. Finally returning to the spotlight in 2013 with the release of his debut EP ‘Discrete Luxury,’ Rico landed his first big hit as a solo artist with the catchy “They Don’t Know.”

Currently promoting the EP, prepping for his tour with rapper Future, and working on his full-length album Turn The Lights On, ThisisRnB TV caught up with Rico Love at SiriusXM in NYC for a new interview.

Rico spoke to us about his early grind and getting his big break working with the Corna Boyz, who are now signed to his production company, writing “Throwback” for Usher, how he approaches songwriting, his new EP, passion for performing live, and plans for his upcoming album.

Check out the full interview above, and if you missed it, watch Rico reflect on the impact of Usher’s Confessions album 10 years later here.