No matter how dark or precarious it may seem, continue to pursue your truth.
I went to a performing arts school, and we studied musical theater, jazz vocal performance, and they kind of start you out on those things because they feel like it is a good foundation, and it was.
I pray, read the word, and then creative stuff happens here. Problem-solving and all of that comes into that space. So 'Da Box' actually represents my sanctuary and that time. I might look trapped in a box, but I'm actually more free in that box than anyone on the outside looking in or in any other space in my life.
I was a dancer for long time. And you always hear that ballet is the core of dance, and that - once you have that down - you can do everything else. For me, jazz is like that for music.
I get people today who say, 'I first heard about you through the Stevie Wonder commercial.' The power of advertising in that way is incredible.
The visuals are equally as important as the music. It's all a complete experience.
I actually like the sort of industrial, working-class woman like Rosie the Riveter, so I'm kind of like the sort of street style of the '50s.
I've been blessed with so many opportunities and so many amazing things throughout this process. But all the while, I remember that the reason that I'm here and the reason that I do music and tell these stories is that people come to know the love, the God that I know.
I didn't want to box it in or say this show caters to this type of person... I think the tide of music is changing. We don't have to worry about rules. We should just do what feels good.
My faith was eventually what helped me face myself, tell the truth about everything I had done, face criticism, cope with guilt, pain, and grow from all of it.
I try to avoid hairspray, gel, and heat as much as I can - I will use a pomade or a very heavy conditioner to style it the way that I want it.
I give credit to my team. I have dedicated people from my label, my fans, and people at these companies that believe in me.
That's why I loved Dinah Washington. She sung jazz, but they called her the Queen of the Blues. She had the control and sophistication of jazz in her note selection and how to attack a song or certain lines, but then attacked it with a painful force of blues behind it. That's why I admired her so much, because of that versatility.
Once you see how powerful music is and how it can affect people, then you want to use it to impact the world.
A pompadour is actually pretty easy for me; it takes me about five minutes.
I style my hair so frequently that I need a really good conditioner to keep it moisturized.
I'm very obsessed with pop culture of the mid-century and it goes hand-in-hand with the music that I studied in school.
When I heard Billie Holiday's voice, Nina Simone's and Ella Fitzgerald's - there was something about their voices to me that was such a different texture than what I was used to listening to at the time. Hearing those jazz voices were so different, and I think I just gravitated toward it.
I was living with my mom in a tiny apartment in Chula Vista, near Third and H Street behind the 7-Eleven. It was crazy to be on the phone with Stevie Wonder. I felt like a meteor hit our apartment!
My family wasn't in the music business, but they loved music.
The most amazing thing is being onstage and watching the audience sing every song lyric for lyric.
I'm a huge Lauryn Hill and Erykah Badu fan, so working with those two in any capacity would be a dream.
I try to not go, 'I'm writing a pop song.' Music is inherently genre-bending.
I established early what I was and wasn't willing to accept. People tried to say what I had to do, whether it be pop or R&B, to be successful. Even when I was in the girl group, they would try to make our voices sound very radio-friendly and fit that mold. But even before I got signed, I knew who I was and who I wanted to be.
At my shows, I like everyone to have a good time... but, I like for us to be real because there's freedom in that.
I always loved music and was drawn to it and affected by it. But it wasn't until I got to San Diego that I started exploring music more.
I struggled academically in high school because it was hard to focus. It was hard to focus on those things that were other than artistic stuff.
I'm excited for the audiences to hear the title track, 'Cheers to the Fall,' plus 'Red Flags' and 'Rearview.'
When you walk in the front of the White House, the pictures on the walls, they change out pretty frequently. They're all very cool and historical, with pictures from the current term and past terms.
It would have been so awesome to be born in the Thirties and be in your prime in the Fifties. Except for the whole being black thing, obviously!
The reach of Coke and McDonald's is undeniable, and I'm thrilled these iconic brands are joining forces to inspire local communities through messages of peace and motivation in unique ways. It's an added bonus that they are using the lyrics to 'Rise Up' as a part of those messages.
I was always inundated with music, whether it be my mother's favorites like Fleetwood Mac and Carole King and the Carpenters, or my dad's jazz music.
I knew that I could sing when I was young. I would listen to a lot of jazz; I'm a big jazz fan. When I first got to high school and studied musical theater, I could sing. But I added certain things to my voice, and I realized after graduating high school that this is the kind of voice I had. It's not very nimble, but it's heavy.
I use this GPB glycogen protein balancing conditioner by Aubrey Organics that I love.
It was so surreal, having my parents hear the President and First Lady saying to me, 'Good to see you again! We're so proud of you. We watched you on the Grammys and were like, 'That's our girl!'
I was heavily influenced by big voices when I was younger. People like Whitney Houston, Aretha Franklin, and Patti Labelle really spoke to me. When I got older, I was into Erykah Badu, Jill Scott, and Lauryn Hill, but it wasn't until I started working with a voice coach that I really dove into jazz music.
It's hard to remember my childhood without remembering music.
As a singer, if I'm in a room that is too cold, I kind of freak out, so I actually like the humidity, and I love the heat.
For the record, I am not Stevie Wonder's wife, and no, I am not his child.