Shenseea talks growth, her manish-womanish vocals, anticipated collabs, being a rapper, and who her ultimate hero is, plus more in this interview with JR Watkis.
Since this interview at her Romeich Entertainment studio she has toured the world, snagged a record deal, and an ambassador deal with Pretty Little Thing clothing store. She recently released new visuals for her track Good Comfort
The ShengYeng Queen speaks candidly about her journey in music and inspirations.
Shenseea, let’s talk about music and your journey as a performer and recording artist. You are improving rapidly, to what do you credit your improvements?
I travel a lot and I get to experience different audiences. Performing for me now is fun. Years ago anywhere I go I had to have dancers behind me to boost my confidence. I tell them if anything goes wrong they should take the attention (distract them). But now, it’s like majority of the time I don’t feel like I need anybody on the stage with me.
Many times I tell everyone to come off the stage because I want to grab their full attention.. you get me? It’s really experience that helped to mold me and I am really proud of myself because I never once backdown. Romeich had people come in teach me to perform but performance comes with your personality and nobody can teach you that. They can teach choreography but the connection has to be natural.
So you did go through the A&R process?
I did and sometimes looking back and I cringe but I worked really hard in the last two years.
When I first heard your voice I knew it was something special. How did you develop your vocal range?
I was always an outspoken child and was told never to talk under my breath. I was always shouting. Even when I am expressing myself I was always loud so that was training my voice to be strong but the control comes from the beat.
When I hear the baseline and kick in the rhythm, I know that’s definitely Dancehall and that chop manish-womanish comes out and that helped me to channel my voice. When I am onstage I say ‘ok for this next song I will tone it down a bit’, and midway I just say Yeah this is me, deal with it. It also grabs the attention of people and keeps them anticipating.
Do you write your music?
Yes I do. I write my music. I have over 100 songs and I wrote most of them. Doesn’t mean I won’t take a song from someone. We should be more open to songwriters but only if the song makes sense.
Who inspires you?
I wouldn’t say anyone specifically but growing up I listened to a lot of Christopher Martin because i’d watch Rising Stars. And Michael Jackson… I used to play Michael Jackson everyday.
So no other female inspire you in the industry?
Well as far as performance I watch Spice a lot and she has the stage locked. She brings the flag for the females onstage. She held her own and I respect her for that. Where lyrics are concerned I listen a lot of Vybz Kartel and challenge myself against him.
I take note of your freestyles. That’s not common for Jamaicans.
That’s why I picked it up. I don’t like to do what everyone else is doing.
I notice you are diverse with the Hip Hop lingua as you are with the Dancehall. Which one do you prefer?
Jamaican of course. Jamaican all the way. I can’t do rap 100 percent HipHop lingua I have to add some dancehall in it.
You can DJ with the Hip Hop flow. With hip hop having a bigger audience and you being mixed with Black and Asian you think you will do songs for other markets like the Spanish market?
I would do a Spanish song but it has to be the right look.
People compare you to Stefflon Don, would you do a collab with her?
We communicate and I would. I am always up for it when it comes on to female collaborators. Not just her but it depends because I work off vibe and energy.
Who is your dream collaboration?
Where will Shenseea be in five years.
In five years I will be an international artist and in seven years I want to pursue a career in acting.
Where is your spiritual center?
I was raised in a Pentecostal church. That’s where I did a lot of acting and singing. I could never sing in a choir I wanted to sing alone because I didn’t want anyone to drown out my voice.
Ok, I am gonna say a word and you tell me what comes to mind. First word is ‘Children’.
Is Shenseea in love?
Love for me is honesty.
Family. My fans are my family.
Final one, “Romeich”
Well. Romeich is like a hero to me. Hero. I came from nothing, and if someone can see you and invest so much in you and work so hard and keep pushing and pushing he’s like a hero to me.
Thanks so much for talking with me Shenseea. Anything you want to say to your fans?
Thank you guys for supporting me. Make sure you go subscribe to my Vevo page and watch all my music videos and official audio. To all the upcoming artists you don’t have to do anything you do want to do to get where you want to be, especially females, just work and trust in God.
For the full audio version of this and other music interviews listen to the Top Form Podcast on Spotify, IheartRadio, Apple Podcast and everywhere you listen to podcasts. Email: [email protected]