Nice to see you back recording music! What inspired your break from the music industry for the past few years?
Thank you! It's good to be back on the scene. I've missed the entire process.
I never intended on taking a break from music, but life has it's funny ways of throwing a curevball here and there.
In 2011, I decided to open up a Pride shop on Bourbon Street, Bourbon Pride. At first, I thought "How hard could this be? Just order what people want, stock the shelves, and you're good to go!" That was definitely not the case!
Tell us about your store and how that is going for you? Is it what you expected it to be?
Bourbon Pride is really the only Pride shop we have in New Orleans, dare I say Louisiana. We are fortunate to have such a great, supportive LGBT community and to have their respect means so much to me. I had previous retail experience from my college days, but owning one is a whole 'nother beast!
What makes it fun is ALL the walks of life that come through our doors everyday. We may just have to shoot a reality show one day :)
Are there similarities between having your own retail business and being in the music business?
I suppose there are when it comes to being creative. With each field, you have to be creative to obtain, keep, and please your consumers. At the shop, I have kept my creativity going by designing the t-shirts we sell, which has been fun for me. However, creating music is where I want to put more of my focus at the moment.
What have you learned from one that might help you with the other?
Being on tour and meeting tourists is alot alike. You are seeing new people everyday, and that alone helps you rediscover life on a daily basis. In a cool way, I feel like I have become an ambassador for New Orleans and I now truly feel proud to represent that.
Have you been doing any more acting in the past few years?
Although not my priority, I've had a few good roles. I landed a nice role opposite John Goodman on HBO's Treme and worked alongside Matthew McConaughey and Jared Leto in the upcoming movie "Dallas Buyers Club". I'm definitely keeping my options open when it comes to acting.
What has inspired your return to music?
Honestly, I had to force myself to make time for it. I used to write 10-20 songs a year. Knowing that the fans had waited so long also made me want to create again.
My first album "Artificial" was released in 2007, and that is way too big of a break between records. A lot of life has happened in that timespan that needs to be recorded.
It was time - point blank.
We love your new single, “Our Love” Tell us a bit about writing and recording it.
First of all - THANK YOU! I'm very proud of it!
I wrote "Our Love" two Summers ago and knew it was going to be my next single. The song was so instant for me. The melody popped into my head, and in 2 hours, the lyrics and music were done.
Usually, when a song happens like that, you know it's a hit. When I was writing the song, I definitely drew inspiration from Will I. Am and Calvin Harris, two guys I look up to in the business.
I wanted "Our Love" to be a fun, light-hearted, sentimental testament that everyone can connect with and groove to.
Originally, I recorded it in Spring of 2012, but I wasn't 100% happy with the music production.
After sitting on it for a year and soaking up what's current on radio, I got a hold of an amazing producer, Mark Bingham, and we crafted the final version together.
So many artists are touring less and using the internet as a way to get their music out there. What are your thoughts and plans around that?
I'm finding myself in that zone at the moment with launching "Our Love". I would much rather be a visible artist on the stage, rather than the internet. But, the music business has a lot of blurred lines.
Just because your video gets one million views does not mean you are a viable artist. You have to put in the work in order to gain any momentum in the business. Sure, we all want one million views.
But, let's face it. Nothing beats the sound of thousands of people singing your lyrics back at you. That's what I live for!
How’s married life going? What do you think is the secret to a great relationship?
Joseph (whom I like to call my illegal husband) and I are having a wonderful life - thanks for asking! I knew when I met him 9 years ago that I scored an amazing man.
I'm not sure if there really is a secret to sustaining a relationship. I know what I signed up for and I stand beside him. If anything, open conversations and maintaining your identity will get you far - and that's in every aspect of life.
What do you find attractive in a man?
This question actually makes me blush.
Without getting physically descriptive...
nothing is more attractive than someone who
knows who they are. When you meet
someone who is being their authentic self,
you couldn't ask for a better trait. It's always nice to see that, especially in the show business.
If you could go back and say one thing to your teenage self, what would it be?
Oh, man! Well, that one thing lingers on into my life today and that is to stop procrastinating!! That's somewhat of a DNA defect in people, and unfortunately, I have it.
But, I always get to whatever that needs to get done eventually! Do I get a gold star for that?!
Is there anything else in the works that you'd like to tell your fans about?
I definitely intend on releasing an EP, if not an entire album. I'm really excited to see how everyone reacts to "Our Love" and where the song takes me. I'm going to try my hardest to make this song the hit that I believe it is and perform the hell out of it! That's my main goal at the moment!