“Never be afraid to invest in yourself. If you can’t invest in yourself whether it be time or money why would anyone in the music industry want to invest in you?”
Check out the interview with PoeticSoldier exclusively on Skilly Magazine Online.
How were you able to start your journey in the entertainment business? Where did this all start?
PoeticSoldier: It all started with a pen, notebook, and a lonely child looking for a way to escape reality. At the age of 9 I started writing free verse poems, rhymes, songs; anything that came to mind. I always went by the name Poetic Soldier in high school because of the way I turned my poetry into such a powerful weapon and used it to overcome the bullies and the battles I went through as a young child.
At the age of 22 I met my producer, Fatso (Raul Ortiz) of Gothem Records (independent label from Chicago). We worked on a collab album with local rapper (Insomniac) called Immortal Poetry. After the CD release party I started working on my first solo album War of Words in my home studio. That was released in 2015. It wasn’t until I put my lyrics over a beat that I really felt the fire ignite inside me and that’s the real point that PoeticSoldier was born.
What are some of the creative ways you use to promote your music?
I do a lot of promoting on social media. I will sit for hours at my desk in front of my computer sending my music to each and every person on my friends list. I also join different competitions such as Coast2Coast, Exposure, and One Shot to try and get my music to be heard by more of the mainstream world.
I also host CD release shows for each album I have put out and I travel to a lot of different open mics. I have gone to Atlanta and Miami to perform in different hip hop events. When I went to Miami I invested myself in the Coast2Coast hip hop convention and was a sponsored artist where we had a table at the convention people could come listen to my music and get merchandise.
I have stood 10 hours in the Chicago freezing weather just to get a chance to rap 16 bars for Horse Shoe Gang, but it was so worth it.
What is the greatest challenge you face in today’s entertainment business? How do you overcome them?
I think the biggest challenge I face in today’s entertainment business is being heard. It’s hard as a white local female rapper in the underground to compete with the mainstream hip hop world. You can’t just come out with a song or a verse that sounds exactly like the last guy. The hip hop industry is looking for the next hottest artist.
You have to speak from the heart every time but also give your fans what they want to hear and what they can relate to. It’s not always easy to overcome the challenges you sometimes face in the hip hop world, but you have to accept those challenges and then face them head on.
How is the music scene like in your hometown? What do you like about it and what don’t you like?
I live in the south suburbs of Chicago about 20 minutes outside the city and there is a lot of talent lurking in the shadows. The music scene is always alive in my city. You take a drive down I55 to the lakeshore there is music on every corner.
No matter where you go in the city Chicago you will find music. That’s what I love about my city. There isn’t one thing I don’t like about the music scene in Chicago; it’s actually the reason why I have stayed due to the up rise in violence. It’s the way the city sings to me and inspires me I guess. Never want to lose that feeling.
Where do you think the future of music is going to be? How do you feel artists can be more a part of it?
I think the future of music rests in social media. Back in the day you would send your demo to a record label or to a disk jockey at your local radio station to be heard. Now you have to upload everything via social media because that’s where everybody hangs out.
I think if you want to be a bigger part of the music world you have to get on social media and share your music with everyone. Not just one social media site, get on all of them and sit down every day and post and update your social media as much as possible.
What advice can you give to other upcoming artists and musicians trying to achieve success?
Never be afraid to invest in yourself. If you can’t invest in yourself whether it be time or money why would anyone in the music industry want to invest in you?
What inspires you to write your next song?
Life inspires me. My city inspires me, there are so many things that inspire me to write music the list could go on for miles. If I had to pick just one I would say it’s the feeling I get inside when I hear my music come to life through the speaker. It inspires me to be a better writer, a better lyricist, a better musician and that’s what gives me the motivation to start working on my next song.
What are the steps you take to make a song?
First step is to inspire myself to create a song. I throw on some beats and I sit back and relax. I listen to each beat carefully. I let the music sing to me before I sing to the music. Each beat brings a different emotion to the surface. I sit at my desk in my home studio and I pick a beat that I feel suits the style of the song I am going to write and once the wheels start turning it’s lift off from there. I could sometimes write 3 or 4 songs in a day if I feel that inspired to do so.
What do you think makes a great song?
I think there is a lot to making a great song like lyrics, melodies, bass lines, hooks, etc. I think the most important thing to making a great song is the heart and soul the individual writer puts into the song.
Where can we connect with you? Can you give us your social media links and where we can contact you?