Check out or one on one interview with Motown/Capitol artist Kevin Ross!
Soulful artist Kevin Ross recently dropped the visual for his track “Pick You Up” which generated a lot of excitement especially for his upcoming debut album “The Awakening” dropping March 24th. Ross also recently finished touring with Ro James and has a long list of collaborations under his belt. From Berklee College of Music to songwriting for some of today’s greatest talents, Kevin Ross is sure to blow up this year. Check out what Kevin Ross had to say about his debut project, musical inspirations and growing up in a musical family.
What was it like growing up in a musical family? Did you feel any pressure to pursue a career in music?
No, I didn’t feel any pressure, I just felt connected with my family since all of them sang. I think it was more nerve-wracking growing up when all of them came to my performances, you know when I was younger, but it was all love and I think that it kind of created a very warm environment for me, especially during the holidays everybody would be singing.
So your family was probably really supportive of your career path?
Most definitely. I’m very blessed and fortunate to have such a supportive family behind me. They never questioned whether or not I was going to make it. They gave me alternatives like what if it doesn’t work, none of that. I’m blessed to have a family that truly believed in my career.
Who were some of your idols while growing up?
Stevie Wonder was number one. Donny Hathaway, Marvin Gaye, Michael Jackson, Prince, Lauryn Hill, Maxwell, Ne-Yo, Jay-Z. I felt some type of connection.
Have your idols inspired or influenced you work?
In one way or another. Whether it’s performance or whether it’s work ethic, or personality and the way they handle things, sometimes it may not necessarily be the music, but what’s behind the music or what makes them successful. I’ve had the blessing to go behind the scenes and look at a Maxwell or Lauryn Hill.
Can you talk about the message behind the “Pick You Up” video?
I think for “Pick You Up” I wanted it to be very self-reflective so you have me and a broken mirror, because there was a time when I felt broken, I felt alone. I felt like no one understood what I was going through or my circumstances and I felt God gave me that song in order to encourage and motivate myself and encourage others.
Can you talk about the process behind your upcoming debut album “The Awakening” and how that process differed from making independent projects?
I’m glad that you brought that up, I’ve actually never had an independent project out. There is another artist by the name Kevin Ross and he’s like a Christian rapper. I had a record called dream and he had an EP called Dream Chasers and people were completely confused. I just wanted clear things up that I’ve never had an independent project out. This is my first debut album; I’ve only had two Eps with Motown prior to The Awakening.
The process for The awakening was 2 or 3 years in the making and I’m just really excited for people to hear my perspective and my views on the world. It has a very socially conscious vibe to it, but it has a very love vibe to it as well. You get a good glimpse of who I am as an artist and a man.
Can we expect any features on you project?
I just released a record it’s called “Look Up” and it’s featuring Lecrae, he’s an inspirational artist with a huge platform. For him to get on a record with me – he blazed this record.
Lecrae, BJ The Chicago Kid– we did an R and base kind of theme to it, which was really cool, it’s something people weren’t really used to hearing especially if you’ve heard any music prior it usually very soulful and this was more R&B where it gave me some lyrical sensibility to let people know I’m very versatile within my writing.
I have production from Babyface, we did a record together so that was fun.
A lot of young up-and-coming producers that will make their mark and I’m just blessed enough to have them along with me producing.
“Long Song Away” was the first single out the gate and I produced it and it’s an amazing feeling.
Can you talk about what you’ve learned from working with such amazing artist like Try Songz, Jaime Foxx, Ne-Yo, T.I.?
All of them the common thread that they have is their work ethic. You have to have an extreme level of discipline in order to go in there and complete a project, complete an album, complete a track or verse, or anything of that nature, but to see them all work at a high level- that’s, that’s not normal. Each and every one of them are truly gifted in their craft. I study that and take it in and absorb it and look forward to being one of those people that has that extreme work ethic.
Who do you want to collaborate with?
I’m fair game to collaborate with any and everybody, but my number one of course is Stevie Wonder, hands down my favorite artist and I’d be interested in seeing how we could connect.
Any last words for our readers?
Absolutely! Make sure you follow my journey at @Kevinrossmusic Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat everything is @Kevinrossmusic, also you could look me up on YouTube and check out my 90s R&B acapellas that I have up. Make sure you go and get “The Awakening” which is out March 24th.