Rosalind Rice will make sure that you’ll remember her name and her face. With the upcoming release of her mixtape, “Cocoa Butter and Vitamin E”, she will also make sure that you’re “healed”. A very powerful songstress and entertainer, she sits down with TheUrbanTwist.com and lets us know about some of the places that she’s been and about some of the places she’s going, and why it’s only just a matter of time before this “Beautiful” lady gets picked up by everyone’s radar.
Brennen Jones: So where are you from Miss Ros?
Rosalind Rice: Essex County, New Jersey. I moved around a lot when I was young so I pretty much claim Essex County.
BJ: How old were you when you realized that singing and performing was your passion?
RR: Nine years old…definitely at nine years old. That’s the age I started writing. Ten years old is the age when I started actually recording.
BJ: So you were recording at ten years old?
RR: Yeah, I recorded my first song “Angel of Mine”…well not my first song, but a demo. My first song that I actually wrote myself was called “Dying Inside”, and I wrote that at age eleven.
BJ: I find that pretty interesting. You don’t hear about too many ten year olds being all up in the studio like that. I see here that you’ve also performed at the legendary Apollo theatre growing up. How was that experience?
RR: I performed at the Apollo theatre when I was 16 for their amateur night. I didn’t win, but luckily I didn’t get booed (Laughs) so that was good…I was just happy that I didn’t get booed. But I had a lot of people standing up and applauding and stuff like that. I didn’t win…actually a poet won.
BJ: What song did you sing at Apollo?
RR: Chaka’s Khan’s “Sweet Thing”.
BJ: That’s one of my favorite Chaka Khan song’s.
RR: Yep. Chaka Khan is amazing.
BJ: Since we’re talking about Chaka Khan…who are some of your influences? People that you may try to model yourself after?
RR: I try not to model myself after anyone…but as far as influences are concerned, Mariah Carey…I definitely love Mary J. Blige and Erykah Badu. I also like Alanis Morissette. These are all very good writers and I love their writing styles. Recently I’ve been listening to a lot of Katy Perry and I don’t know if she’s writing all of her material but both of her albums are amazing.
BJ: In addition to you performing at the Apollo you also studied music at the infamous Berkley College of Music. How was your experience there and what did you get out of it?
RR: Absolutely nothing! …no, I’m just kidding. (laughs) I think I learned more from the students that went to Berkley than from the teaching. I think I learned more so from the jam sessions that we would just have in our rooms and from people turning me on to certain artists and about certain artists and greats that they would study such as Billie Holliday, Sarah Vaughan, and all of these artists that I may have not really cared about before then when I went to Berkley and listened to what they listened to…I was like this is pretty cool.
BJ: It seems like it was just one big melting pot of talent there for y’all to kind of feed off each other….seems like a wonderful experience.
RR; Yeah, it was a lot of fun. We jammed out a lot. Sometimes we would freestyle and be silly and sometimes we’d go out to restaurant and get a big table and we would start singing crazy songs and start making stuff up on the spot. It was really fun, a really great experience. I’m just glad that I was able to experience that.
BJ: So it was a real life “Glee” wherever y’all went.
RR: (Laughs) Yeah, it was like that. It was like “Glee’. I got a chance to be friends with people from all areas all across the country and a lot of them are doing some great things.
BJ: Planning on Collaborating with any of your friends that you met at school?
RR: To be honest, probably not. A lot of them are doing their own thing and most of my friends that I have met there our styles are different. Where they help me out the most at is with the contacts. They give me a lot of info on events and such that I should check out. I’ve definitely benefitted from that. But I wish them well with their music and their careers.
BJ: I recently got a chance to check out your music video for your song “Beautiful”. Was there a certain someone that was your inspiration for the song?
RR: There’s always a certain someone when I write. When I write anything, it’s always about someone…there’s always someone in mind. Whether it’s about a relationship in the past or me writing about other people’s situations and experiences.
BJ: Where else do you draw your inspiration from?
RR: Everywhere. Every time I step outside the house everything is there for me to make a good song. I can get inspiration just walking down the street or sometimes when I’m driving I would have to pull over and write something down. I literally get my inspiration from everywhere. I recently just did a song about suicide…a cousin of mine just committed suicide….on my father’s side of the family. There seems to be a lot of suicides on that side of the family and decided to do a song about it…the song came out pretty hot. You would think that it would be a sad song but it actually sounds like a mid-tempo track and is pretty catchy. So the inspiration basically just comes from my life.
BJ: Suicide is definitely something that needs to be addressed. I would love to hear the song whenever you’re finished with it.
RR: Most definitely! I will keep you posted.
BJ: About styles of music. I’ve heard some songs from you that are ballads and then I’ve heard some that were more up-tempo. Do you have a certain preference?
RR: You know what, honestly it’s just whatever comes to me. Recently I just come with songs and then I go to my new producer, shout out to Soundwave, and I go to them and I tell them that this is what I got right now, what can you come up with and they’d try to create the song on the spot if they can. And then I’ll just go with the beat that I like. Recently, people would come up to me and say that I need to do some club bangers and more stuff that are in the right now and I wouldn’t be happy doing that. I wouldn’t be doing me. A lot of the time people will do a lot the things that people say that they need to do and a lot of the times people will say what people say that they need to say without doing them. So basically I don’t want to do stuff that’s just on the radio right now because six months from now that won’t be what’s popping. I just do whatever comes to me.
BJ: That’s kind of refreshing to hear. I think that most artists don’t think about the future and that they’re more stuck in the present and the right now. So where do you see yourself 5 years from now?
RR: 5 years from now, I want my songs on the radio obviously. I want to have Albums on the Billboard. The songs that I write as I write them I say to myself, “can these songs become Grammy award winning songs?” Literally…because in the past I’ve done songs that were just like whatever, they were songs that were good but weren’t Grammy caliber. Recently, the songs that I’m making are on the same level of some of the Grammy Artists that are out now on the radio. I definitely feel that I can give them some kind of competition with these next tracks that I’m about to drop. And I feel that I keep going further and progressing in the direction that I’m going in, that I can become the next “it” girl most definitely.
I also want get into fashion and become a fashion icon. My tracks will keep getting sicker and my wardrobe will keep getting sicker. (laughs) Everything will be crazy and I just want to build a big fan base and travel all around the world and become that next icon.
BJ: You have a mix tape dropping real soon, why don’t you tell us about that?
RR: The mix tape is called “Cocoa Butter and Vitamin E”…the reason for the name is that the songs are real therapeutic and kind of heals whomever can relate to them. I made the song about suicide that deals with my cousin that committed suicide and the rest of the tracks deal with situations that we all go through in life. Like I said, “Cocoa Butter and Vitamin E”, it heals cuts and scars…when you have a cut on you, and when the scab falls off, you put cocoa butter and vitamin E on it to help it heal. The mix tape is a free download and “Beautiful”, which is the first single and video, is on the tape as well.
BJ: Are there anyone that you’re collabing with on the mix tape?
RR: I’m trying to get Kendrick Lamar on “Suicide”. I have S.Y.O.R. Outlaws, which is kind of like a new Gorillaz, which is that they’re like an animated band. They have a mix tape coming out and a song with J. Cole that’s out. They have a cartoon and a comic book online. They’re really doing all kind of next level stuff. I really wanted to make sure they were on the mix tape as well and maybe I can get some more features…I’m trying to talk to some more people that I know that were signed to Maybach Music and that would be great.
BJ: Do you plan on shooting another video for the mix tape?
RR: Most definitely! I actually plan to shoot videos for all of the songs and get them to WorldstarHipHop and VladTv and some other hip-hop sites. Me and my publicist will be grinding hard with this project, passing out fliers and doing some traveling to really push this. I’m putting a lot of money into this. I just want it out there. I just want this project out there on itunes, the website, your website (laughs), and anywhere else people are able to go to download it.
BJ: So when’s the mixtape dropping?
RR: It’ll be dropping sometime in early to mid May, but I will definitely keep you in the loop…and people can also follow me on Twitter.