Vanessa Bling took a break from the world of music to regroup after 3 years of incarceration. Cardi B’s use of Vanessa Bling’s “Everything Fi Hold Him” catapulted the singer back into the spotlight and she took that as a sign to give her fans what they had been asking for: new music.
RESPECT.: Tell us a little bit about you as an artist and your background?
Vanessa Bling: Actually I grew up in Kingston, Jamaica. I was there with my mom, grandmother, my two brothers. I’m the eldest one, it’s four and my mother, I am the only girl. I grew up in church, singing in the school choir and the church choir so that’s basically where I started at.
RESPECT.: What age did you say that you started?
Vanessa Bling: Very tender.
RESPECT.: As far as the music, how did you really transition and breakthrough as far as on the dancehall scene?
Vanessa Bling: It was a friend of mine who introduced me to Vybz Kartel. Yeah she was a good friend of mine she told me that she knew Vybz Kartel. She knew a friend that knew Vybz Kartel. I went there and we made a connection. He asked me can I sing and I told him that I could sing and I sing for him right there and then. Then we went in the studio and he gave me a riddim and told me if I can sing on the beat, that he’ll sign me and I do just that fine. Then we started “One Man” and get it on the radio and the rest is history.
RESPECT.: As far as you told me y’all had a nice connection and he took you in as his protégé. More so now from the age that you are now than when you were first in your career, how do you feel that you are a older and now a woman than when you first started?
Vanessa Bling: I feel different because as you grow, you learn and see a lot of different things and meet a lot of different people. Now things are more different to me now that I’m signed to Outta Space Entertainment. We are trying to break off here in the U.S. Market. Things are much different to me now. I would say a little bit better and I’m greatful.
RESPECT.: I know you had to take a step back from the music to deal with situations outside of the music. More so now with you coming back, what do you want to accomplish with your love of music? Also as far as the song “Freedom” from your EP, Still Standing, what does that really mean as far as the message you want to share to everyone?
Vanessa Bling: My EP, Still Standing, it represent me a lot because I have been through a lot. Naming this EP, Still Standing, it was a great idea for both me and my team because every single song you hear on this EP represent me and everything I’ve been through. First, you hear “Freedom”, that’s when I was incarcerated with the system. Then i went get out and get my “10 Bags”, then you have “What to Do”. After “What to Do”, I find this bad man, I fell in love and then. he breaks my heart. Everything about this EP just represents me.
RESPECT.: With your music now, what keeps your driven in the music? What’s your motivation?
Vanessa Bling: What keeps me going is ma bible, Psalms 35, God, my mom, and my team. I can’t forget my great friends. They are who motivate me and say “Vanessa, you are a world star, you’re going to do this big. You are going to represent Jamaica big. That’s what basically what keeps me going.
RESPECT.: Definitely! Basically now we can leave the past in the past and move forward towards the future. Do you feel everyone deserves a second chance and work through it to find their own redemption? What is redemption to you?
Vanessa Bling: Everyone deserves a second chance in life, of course. My thing is when you get a second chance is for you know to prove to people. When you get a second it is great but it is how you use it. My thing is not just use my chance to be a better person that I was from yesterday. So moving forward it is just greatness.
RESPECT.: So what are your goals moving in 2019 what projects are coming out?
Vanessa Bling: Actually we’re promoting this EP, Still Standing. Then we’re actually about to do some radio runs for October then we have the Carribean tour. From the Carribean tour, we are going to Europe and then from Europe we are going to the UK to tour, then Canada. Then, we’ll come back from Canada and do the U.S. tour. Then from the U.S. tour, we are going to India, then from India to Dubai, then Dubai to Israel. Then we’re going to Africa for three months.
RESPECT.: What would be the overall message that you are trying to tell?
Vanessa Bling: Never give up, no matter what the situation is never give up.
RESPECT.: What does RESPECT. mean to you?
Vanessa Bling: RESPECT. means a lot to me. It’s like if you don’t respect yourself, then no one is going to respect you, so respect means a lot to me and my brand. I try to put out my best and be the best in how I try to approach things. I like to do things the right way. If you approach life and being scary, then people will deal with you according to how you behave. I try to do whatever I do to best of my ability.
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