FROM WRITING TO PERFORMING…
Soulful, vibrant, and ahead of her time are all words that describe the amazing Lydia Rene. Who is she? She is an amazing recording artist who has been compared to Jill Scott, and by the way, she does not mind the comparison. Lydia Rene’s music takes you on a journey that will get you in touch with your soul. This is music that takes you to another dimension. When was the last time you felt that way about an artist or song? When was the last time your heart felt a clear connection to a song? When was the last time a song made you yearn to hear its soulful words and melodies?
Lydia Renee started writing songs when she was just a teenager knowing she had a gift. Self-doubt and stage fright caused her to delay her transition from a writer to a performer. However, Lydia’s family knew this gift could not be kept quiet so with a push from her aunt, who is also a recording artist, she decided to record her songs. We are so happy she did! In 2009 Lydia’s live album entitled “My Love IS MY Life,” was released and it has been a non-stop ride for her ever since. With the motivation from her family a beautiful, curvy, and soulful STAR was born!
BJ: Your voice is so amazing and soulful. Do you get upset when people compare your voice to Jill Scott’s?
LR: No I don’t get upset, I think it’s a GREAT compliment. I think people see my afro, my smile, and my personality and they automatically think about her because of those things…and the fact that we’re both from the Philadelphia-area…and are both curvy women! So it’s definitely understood, but I still want people to recognize me for my unique sound and talents as well.
BJ: Philly? WHAT! I’m not from there by my family is! Man how I need a hoagie in my life!
LR: Really! LOL
BJ: Being able to work with TOP producers and artists is always a blessing. Who have you been blessed to work with and submit songs to?
LR: Well I initially started working with producers Tejumold and Johari Newton who helped produce the GRAMMY Award-winning album “The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill.” They were the ones who gave me the opportunity to work with them to pitch songs to artists like Toni Braxton, Melanie Fiona, and Lil Mo. But, I definitely learned of how difficult it is to get songs placed (…even when we think it’s the best song in the world). But I enjoyed working with the producers and taking part in the creative process. I’m still finding new artists and producers to work with in hopes of making something special.
BJ: Being around music your entire life what is it about it that touches your soul the most?
LR: I like that I can make people feel something…whether it be at my live shows or just by listening to songs that I’ve recorded. I love when people tell me stories or send me messages saying “this is exactly how I feel!” or “I sent this song to my boyfriend because it expressed everything I felt that i couldn’t say!” That means the WORLD to me that I can help people by singing. But not only that, I also love how people of all ages can enjoy me just being myself and telling my own experiences. I love that someone 75 years old can dance to my music as well as someone who is 6 years old!
BJ: “True Love” is my favorite song of yours. I can honestly say I have listened to it over 100 times! I’m really in love with that song. What made you write it? Was it a life experience that prompt it?
LR: I originally wrote this song about a friend of mine that was in a bad relationship. Anyone that knows me knows that I really value my friendships and if my best friend is sad, depressed, or feeling low because of how someone treated them, it makes me upset as well. My friends are like my extended family. So I decided to write a song hoping that maybe she could see her relationship from someone else’s point of view. It’s really about a love where one person constantly gives and the other person only takes. “He wants me but I need him”… is one of the lyrics that I try to illustrate the intensity of a broken relationship. Essentially, this girl is deeply in love with her man, but it is not being reciprocated. She desperately wants him to give her a sign to show her that he loves her, but he never will because…he doesn’t. The crazy part is, after I wrote it, I found myself in a similar situation, and I think the song helped me realize that I wasn’t a healthy relationship either! So that song is like my own therapy.
BJ: “True Love” is something a number of women go through every day. Loving someone who just does not love you back. WOW! I’m so happy you wrote that song.
LR: Aww thank you so much!
BJ: Being in the industry there is so much pressure with image. Are you proud of being a plus size woman in the industry?
LR: I definitely do feel pressure, but no one has ever said anything to me or made me feel that way directly. I’ve put that pressure on myself. I think any female artist (no matter what size they are) always has pressure from society to look a certain way and act a certain way. But as I get older I get more comfortable with the way God made me, and I think it’s important to stay true to yourself.
BJ: Do you feel that there needs to be more plus size singers in the industry who are proud about their bodies like you?
LR: I think that no matter what size you are you shouldn’t be made to feel inferior to anyone else. Confidence is so beautiful…whether it is in entertainment, business, or ANY industry.
True confidence in everything you do will outshine everything and put the pressure on the back burner. Lydia Rene is truly a diamond in the rough and I know you will hear and see more of her next year with her first studio album “Vintage Heart” being released in January 2015. In the meantime go to http://lydiarene.bandcamp.com/ to hear her music!
Lydia Rene is a true “Manik Music” artist!