Have you considered college yet?
I just finished high school in June. I did the whole process–filling out the applications, and I got into about four or five out of the six schools I applied too. It was always in the plan, but right now I’m taking a year off because they’re a lot of projects that kind of hopped into the plans that weren’t there before.
Tell us more about the 8 Days a Week web-series, why should people watch it?
We shot 10 mini episodes, and it’s pretty much an extended pilot if you play it all the way through. Depending on the comments and the feedback, I guess that’s what the network is looking at. We are still waiting on word, if it’s going to be picked up. I have a lot of faith in this project. I think it’s really positive, [and] it shows a lot of different colors, not just black youth. It has a lot of potential. People have had nothing but good things to say about it so far.
What do you think about everyone’s negative opinions on BET Networks?
The biggest problem is people of color are always picking on their own people. There is no reason why people shouldn’t be supporting BET, when they are trying to bring back sitcom television and support black girls with Black Girls Rock. They’re trying to do something positive. I’ve always been encouraged to be respectful of people who are trying to do things that I’m trying to do. It’s tough enough to be black. BET has so much positive programming; there is no reason why we shouldn’t be backing them up.
Who are your musical inspirations?
Because of my dad, I’m into a lot of older music. Nat King Cole, Billie Holliday. I think a lot of the artists out today are pulling from them. Chrisette Michelle and even Beyoncé. But I love Bob Marley. I think, lyrically, he is on a whole other world forever. I have nothing but respect for Beyoncé. She’s a one-man show. She is one of the only artists out right now that still has showmanship.
What’s your advice for people your age on breaking into the industry?
I think people need to learn how to take advantage of their resources. You don’t have parents that are in the industry? Fine. You don’t live in LA or New York? Fine. You still have the advantage of the internet, and that’s all you need to get attention. But get an honest opinion to see if you’re really meant for the industry. There’s so many people who you see on shows like X-Factor, they waste all their money and time because no one was ever honest with them, like ‘you have potential in this but work on that.’ YouTube is great for [giving honest feedback] its important to have honest opinions, take advantage of the internet and build yourself.