Malynda Hale @malyndahale |Photographer:Arshak Aleksanyan:@alexarshak
Muah by Mandie Brice: @makeupbymandiebrice| Styled by Yvonne Mwazo:@styledbyyvonne
Interview by Ashira Provost @_ashiraprovost |Assistant Stylist by Allan Muteti @ayemuteti14
Assistant Stylist by Bebe Couri @just1_bebe
1. Often you can see a shift or flux in artist's pieces over the span of their lives that some may consider as evolution. What does "evolution within the arts" mean to you as an artist?
I think if you don’t evolve in your art you aren’t truly an artist. The amount of changes and phases I have gone through have been necessary to my growth as an artist. It took me awhile to figure out who I am, the message I want to convey and the style of music where my voice sits best. I know even after this EP I will continue to evolve and grow but I love where this musical journey has led me. I love looking back and seeing how much I’ve evolved. I think the other amazing thing about evolution within the arts is that even as trends and popular sounds change artists learn to adapt to them in their own ways. The true artists find ways to evolve with the times, stay relevant but also stay true to themselves. That’s what I’m aiming to do.
2. Why title this EP "The One" ?
When I was trying to find the last song for the record, my friend and one of the producers on the EP, Komica Purnell, came over to my place to write. I loved the tracks we came up with but I hadn’t quite found “the one” yet. She happened to have a song she had already started but didn’t have any verses written—just the hook/chorus of the song. She played it for me and I immediately said “THIS IS THE ONE”. That song ended up being called “The One", and because that moment discovering that song and being able to write verses to a track she created was so special, I knew I had to call the EP that as well. I also noticed that that phrase or those words are sprinkled throughout the songs on the EP so it just made sense.
3. Your EP "The One" covers a span of topics that are of scarcity within the r&b pop community topics such as unconditional love, the invisibility of women of color, and self love, can you give Avante Magazine a brief synopsis about the song We Run?
We Run is the most honest and open song I’ve ever written. It’s my heart and my experience in a song. It has recently been my goal to use music as a means to start a conversation and expose people to a different perspective and that’s exactly why I wrote this song. I felt that there was so much unnecessary controversy and misunderstanding surrounding the Black Lives Matter movement. An entire group of people are simply asking to matter and for some reason that was causing tension throughout our society. It made no sense to me. So I wrote this song without any restriction for myself so that I could fully express what I felt, what I felt my black brothers and sisters felt and what I believe the Black Lives Matter movement was truly about. “We run just to be a life that matters.”
4. You also have a podcast for girl bosses, what topics are covered on the podcast?
Yes! It’s called Boss, Please! and we cover all topics. And even though the show is geared towards women we do have male listeners because our conversation is real and authentic. We are blessed to be able to interview so many incredible women that are forces in their chosen fields. Everyone from stay-at-home moms to executive producers and CEOs. We talk about real life situations and how they affect us as women. The feedback for the podcast has been amazing and I’m proud of the work we’ve been doing.
5.Lastly, Anita Baker or Betty Wright? A good pair of jeans or a LBD?
Anita Baker. Even though she blocked my friend on Twitter for asking her when she was gonna put out another album. And I’m all about the little black dress. I don’t wear jeans often. My curves don’t really allow me to!
6.Where do you see yourself in five years from now?
I have a lot of goals, dreams and plans. But the two main things I see for myself in the next 5 years is being a Grammy winner and being a mom. I’m going to continue working hard to achieve that career goal. And being a mom is something that excites me mainly because I get to raise kids with my husband! He’s just the greatest human being.
7.Do you plan on doing any live shows?
Yes! I have tour dates scheduled through the rest of the year with the bulk of them happening this summer. I love performing live. I love leaving everything on stage and connecting with the audience. But above performing I love meeting people afterward that say they love the lyrics of my songs and that my music really touched them. That’s the entire reason why I do this.
8.What artist would you love to collaborate with on song with in the future?
Anyone who knows me knows my answer to this question is Gavin DeGraw. I truly love everything about who he is an an artist. He is real, authentic an incredible musician and his voice is so soulful and raw. It would truly be a dream to collaborate with him because I feel like I get who he is and it aligns with who I am as a singer/songwriter. Doing music that makes people feel good but that have good messages.
9.If you could travel anyplace in the world where would it be and why?
If we are speaking in terms of places I’ve never been, then it would be Africa. It’s a dream to go there, learn about my lineage and do a safari with my family. If it’s a place I’ve already been, then Ireland. Ireland is by far my favorite country in the world. It’s beautiful, peaceful, and it turns out I’m 8% Irish so I kind of feel at home there, too!
10.Who is your biggest supporter?
It’s easy to say my family, my husband, my best friends, but truly my biggest supporter is myself. I know that may surprise some people but in order to be in this business and continue with the amount of tenacity that I have, I have to believe in myself. I have to be my biggest champion. Because at the end of the day you can only ever truly rely on yourself to get things done. I have pushed myself to no end to accomplish the things that I have. I have a great team now but only because I worked by myself for a very long time. So I absolutely believe that I am my biggest supporter.