Could you introduce yourself?
My name is Aeriel and I’m and R&B/Pop artist from Los Angeles, CA
If you could choose any music artist to go have coffee with and talk about life, who would it be and why?
Definitely Beyonce. Her work ethic and business sense is just so inspiring and I’d love to be able to learn from her one day.
How would you describe your music to someone who hasn't listened to it before?
I would describe my music as sweet yet sultry R&B with a hip hop kick to it.
How does LA influence your creative flow? Do you think you would be where you are today creatively if you were somewhere else?
Every city has a different flare when it comes to creativity. Being in Los Angeles pushes me to focus on my individuality as an artist and brand, but I actually developed my musicianship in the city of Nashville. In Nashville the ability to play live and put on a good show has the highest value, where as in Los Angeles you need to be able to stand out from the masses. Both cities make me who I am as an artist, and I definitely would be a different artist without them.
What's one song that always makes you dance in any situation?
September by Earth, Wind & Fire because I’m an old soul lol.
Could you tell us about your debut single, "Be Down"? What inspired you to create this piece?
I wrote “Be Down” after getting out of a not so great relationship that mentally I knew wouldn't work, but emotionally I was still tied to the relationship. It left me feeling frustrated with the whole dating scene. After I vented to my friends, and saw they felt the same way, I was inspired to write the song.
How do you feel "Be Down" will influence your future releases, what's something that you learned during the creative process of this work that will stay with you?
“Be Down” will always be special because it is not only my first release, but it is also the first song that I worked on with my current producers who are like family to me at this point. I learned a lot making that song because it went through a lot of changes and drafts before it got to the stage where it even was ready to produce a track, let alone record to. It just shows that there is no magic formula or correct way to make a song and not to force the process.
Have you worked in music previously, what's your background, what started it all?
Musically, like many artists I started singing in the church and from then on branched out into local talent showcases and musical theatre. Those avenues really helped me develop a sense of stage presence and confidence, but when you constantly perform others material it can be hard to find an artistic identity. It wasn’t until college when I was about to play and experiment with different sounds to start figuring out who I am as an artist.
I actually started my professional music career behind the scenes. My goal has always been to be an artist, however there was so much I needed to learn to make that a reality. In college I interned for production companies and larger labels like Warner Music and also worked in the industry after college. It taught me a lot about how the industry works so when I started creating my own content, I could apply what I learned to my own art.
How has performing live prepared you for releasing your current work? How have the two experiences changed how you create?
It definitely changes the way you create. The reality is if you gain genuine fans eventually they are going to want to see you live, and some songs that sound great on a recording don’t translate well live. So you really have to keep in mind what type of experience you want your fans to have and create a body of work that can cater to that.
What are a few tips for other artists that might be reading this?
Stay persistent and be yourself! There are over 7 billion people in the world, there really is space and a market for everyone despite what naysayers say. Just stay persistent and work hard to get yourself out there and your tribe will find you.
What are some of your goals for 2018? Where do you see yourself in the future?
In 2018, my goals are to be able to play some festivals and do some live shows outside of my area, as well as release another project that showcases growth and a strong artistic identity.
What makes you happy?
Being able to help my family and friends thrive, achieve their goals, and live their truth really gives me joy. I wouldn't claim to have it all figured out but making a positive impact truly makes me happy, which is why one day I hope to pay it forward and help aspiring artists through management or mentorship.
Any closing comments?
Golden Boy Press is such a dope platform and I feel honored to be featured here. Up next on the horizon for me is my EP at the end of 2017, so definitely be on the look out!