Much like ‘epic,’ ‘diva,’ ‘legend,’ and even ‘copycat,’ the word’s found itself used in overabundance in modern music. Despite a landscape where streaming has become the lay of the land and those who can successfully navigate to Billboard’s perch primarily by some other mean (i.e. pure sales) are few and far between, those who fail to make huge impacts via streaming or sales are often branded…well…flops.
The term’s one Urban pop singer Tinashe‘s battled all often since her 2014 hit, ‘2 On,’ failed to produce a follow-up with as much commercial fanfare. With numerous swings at the bat via succeeding singles from ‘2 On’s parent album, ‘Aquarius,’ a mixtape (‘Night Ride’), and releases from the incarnations of her April 13th due sophomore LP, ‘Joyride,’ T’s chances for chart success – admittedly – have certainly exceeded many in her shoes were afforded.
And, while the attempts have certainly not lacked on the qualitative front nor in critical acclaim, the undeniable neglect from the music buying public at large has not fallen on blind eyes from fans, haters, nor the singer herself. Recently taking to our friends at ‘Vulture,’ the songstress directly dishes on her feelings about being called “a flop,” the revamp of ‘Joyride,’ and so much more.
Read excerpts from the extremely bold sit-down:
Sometimes the narrative surrounding albums overshadow the actual album. Is that a concern with Joyride?
T: There were a lot of setbacks. I made the mistake of even talking about the project too soon.
How much of what people will hear next week existed on the original version?
T: Three versions of this album exist, but there are probably 200 songs. Not much. Maybe 20 percent or less. The title track, but there was a period of time where I lost it.
Right. I’d read that Rihanna took it, wanting it for Anti, but then the song made its way back to you.
T: We bought it back. It’s kind of crazy and I’m not even 100 percent sure what happened. We created the track, I wanted it for my project, then all of a sudden I found out — I was told — that she had purchased the whole concept and beat for her project.
“No Drama” lets out a moment of frustration about the way the industry relies on packaging and selling its artists. How have you navigated those dueling motives?
I’ve never felt like I needed to box myself in. So it was always extremely confusing and frustrating for me when people tried to do that with my music.
The industry has chewed up and spit out plenty of Tinashes. What has kept you from quitting?
I get called a flop all the time. It becomes a mental game at that point. You can’t let people break you or let those titles and peoples’ misconceptions about you get you down.
Click here to read the interview in full.