Interviews - TV

Heather – Road to Stardum

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Heather is the 1st Eliminated Contestant in the episode that aired Wednesday,
January 5, 2005

ROAD TO STARDUM, airs Wednesdays at 8 PM ET/PT on UPN



Q) Who are some of your favorite music artists?


A) I started out listening to a lot of Craig Mack and Junior Mafia. Currently, I would have to say definitely Jay-Z, even though he’s retired now, but his last album was just ridiculous. Foxy Brown is a big influence, as well. She hasn’t done any solo stuff recently, but she’s still being featured on albums. Jadakis’ new album was sick; I’m a big fan. I have a lot of favorites.


Q) Why did you decide to apply for the show?


A) Basically, I had been talking with my manager and it’s hard to bust into hip hop without having another artist bring you in. He had asked me before, “How do you want to come in? Who do you want to bring you in?” I told him several different people and I had told him Missy I’d like to meet up with her and have him call her people. So, this A&R rep from J-Records actually called him and said, “You were talking about the Missy thing and this came up so why don’t you give it a shot. I’ll get you an interview set up and you won’t have to wait in the lines. You just go up and audition and meet with some people.” I decided to do it because I wanted to meet with her to see if we vibed together and do some stuff. I thought that I’d be able to get to do that on the show, but I didn’t really get the chance to hook with her at all on the level that I wanted to get at her.


Q) What was your audition process like for the show?


A) It was basically just me spitting a cappella, no beat or nothing. I brought tracks, but they never wanted me to ever use any of them, which I thought was weird because you can’t get a vibe from an artist without hearing the tracks. I sang for them a little bit and danced for them. I basically did the same thing for different people. I went in and worked with this guy Warren for a little while, he’s a producer in the industry. I worked with him developing and arranging stuff and vocal technique.


Q) What was it like meeting Missy Elliott?


A) I still don’t feel like I ever met her. I really don’t feel like she knows who I am and I know who she is. I really can’t say I met her. We didn’t ever shake hands. I’ve seen her, but I can’t say I met her.


Q) Who do you see winning?


A) I don’t really like to say because I have my favorite. I’ll just have to say watch and see.


Q) What was it like on the tour bus?


A) I actually was on the tour bus just for a quick minute. I rode around in it for a little while, but I didn’t have to spend the night in it. It was pretty nasty. We were trying to clean it up.


Q) Who do you plan on keeping in touch with anyone from the show?


A) I talk to a couple of these cats all the time. Jess and her girls from Chicago called me the other day. They were chilling and called me to say what’s up.


Q) What did you learn about music and the entertainment industry from being on the show?


A) I learned that reality TV isn’t really reality. It is what it is and I can’t hate on it, but it’s not really for me. I learned that I kind of had to take a step back and look what direction I wanted my career to be headed in. I got bigger things going on. I just learned that no matter what happens you gotta’ keep working. The moment you stop everyone that’s working for you is going to stop, too.


Q) What are you going to do now that you are no longer on the program?


A) I am going to be coming out with an album in the next few months and I am going to try and get Jess and Deltrice on some things. I am recording an album, I already started and I have about five tracks now. I’m trying to get up to like sixteen tracks. I’ve been presented with some pretty good artists who want to get on it. I’m blessed. Ever since I got in New York, I’ve really been busting my hump trying to get stuff to happen and I got artists who are down to do my stuff. I’m also getting on a bunch of mixed tapes here in New York with Jadakis, Remy Martin, The Rock and Joe Buddin. These cats have kind of taken me under their wing and showed me the ropes. I got a couple magazine interviews doing feature articles too. I’ll be back for the finale of the show though.


Q) How did you feel performing in front of music legends Dallas Austin and Tina Marie?


A) That was cool. I remembered Tina’s stuff from back in the day. I had seen her before and when they actually introduced her I was like, “Oh wow,” because I didn’t recognize her. Of course, I knew of Dallas Austin. The way things were set up it was definitely intimidating.


Q) What advice do you have for future contestants?


A) Know what you are getting in to when you get in to it. It’s just rarely what they tell you it is.


Q) Have you improved your freestyle since being on the show?


A) I work on it every day and I’m definitely not the best freestyler. I won’t get up and say I can battle you. When it comes down to it I’m a writer. I know my strengths and I’m a badass writer. People have their different things. My strength is writing, but I’m always trying to beef up my freestyle. I work on it an hour a day.


Q) What made you originally decide to become a rapper?


A) I have been doing it for such a long time. I grew up down South in this really small community. When I was 12 years old, me and some friends of mine snuck into this music class at my school. These cats were beat boxing Craig Mack’s “Flava’ In Ya Ear” and free styling over it. I just came into the room and I was so shocked. I had been so sheltered and then I heard this music and I was blown away. It was the first time that music ever spoke for me and not to me. We used to just free style on the back of the bus and one day I said I wanted to try and rap. I spit something for them and they went buck wild. One of my boys came up to me and said this is what I needed to be doing. I got into the studio when I was 17 years old. This guy who owned a studio near my hometown said that he dug what I was doing and wanted to let me use his studio. At 18 or 19 years old, I was going to the studio and I would record all night long and then go straight to school. I was selling CDs and making some money. I thought if I could make money doing what I really love, then why not?


Q) What would you like to say to your fans and supporters?


A) I just want to say thank you. I thank everybody for sticking with my stuff. When my people saw the show so many people wrote me, my whole email account was clogged up with fans who had come to shows and people who came to see me. I had mad support and it’s really cool to hear from someone you don’t know very well and especially from my friends and my family and the people who really do know me. People have been real supportive and it’s been nice. I want to say thank you for your support through all of this.

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