After a two-year hiatus from the music industry, former member of R&B girl group, RichGirl, Kristal Lyndriette Smith is back on the scene. And she’s wiser because of her past experiences. No longer a teenager, she has the backing of Tyrese Gibson, being the first and only artist signed to his Voltron Recordz label, and she’s steaming up the online world with her new single “Silhouette”, a sexy song, perfect for couples looking to heat up during cold winter nights. Ready to take on the music industry full force, Kristal isn’t letting anything stop her. Despite feeling a little under the weather, the North Carolina native joins Tyrese – who makes it a point to let all the media attending his global press conference that there is nothing intimate going on between him and his artist, she is like a little sister – in re-introducing her sound to the world.
WHAT WAS THE RECORDING PROCESS OF “SILHOUETTE” LIKE FOR YOU? It’s funny because I never would have thought in that moment of recording that it would be a single. It was so fun recording this record… We definitely didn’t want to be raunchy or nasty so we were like, ‘How can we say this in a sexy, grown up, but classy, tasteful way…’ We just wanted to make sure that on every song that people can hear my vocal ability, that people can understand who I am through my voice, through my emotion, so of course, “Silhouette” was very fun. We had the candles lit and the lights down and we were trying to catch the mood because, to be honest with you, since RichGirl, I hadn’t done a lot of sexy, sultry songs, so I was like, ‘I need to be in the mood.’
IN YOUR BIO YOU SAID MONEY DIDN’T MATTER AS MUCH AS HAVING SOMEONE BELIEVE IN YOU. WHAT DRIVES YOU TO HAVE THIS APPROACH TO YOUR CAREER? I’ve been in a situation where I chose more money over the feeling that somebody actually believes in me, because I needed it at the time… Once I got into this situation with Tyrese at Voltron he really made me realize it’s not about the cheque that’s cut, it’s about who believes in you, who is going to take that extra step to help you get to where you want to be. You could have a million dollars and be sitting on a shelf somewhere or you could take a lesser cheque and have somebody there that’s working with you that’s there to make you the best you that you can be… I could have a dollar in my pocket right now and I’m so happy because I’m getting to explore myself as an artist… I’d rather somebody teach me how to make my money than just give me a bunch of money. Show me how to make my money and show me how to continue to get money by doing this.
YOU ALSO HAVE SAID THAT YOU TOOK SOME TIME TO MAKE THE DECISION TO SIGN TO VOLTRON THINKING ABOUT THE FACT THAT TYRESE IS ALSO AN ARTIST HIMSELF. HOW HAS HE PROVEN HIS COMMITMENT TO YOU? Everything he said he’s going to do, he’s done. It’s really just that simple… Even before I signed the deal, he was calling to check on me just to make sure I was good. Nothing to do with music, just, ‘Are you okay?’ And that meant a lot to me, because since my group broke up, nobody was calling my phone, not even to ask me if I was okay. Everything he said he was going to do, he’s done… And I respect that and that’s why I’m so happy to be here and on this journey with Tyrese.
HAVING COME INTO THE MUSIC INDUSTRY AT A VERY YOUNG AGE, WHAT WERE SOME OF THE MOST IMPORTANT LESSONS YOU LEARNED EARLY ON, IN YOUR TEENAGE YEARS? I would say one of them was make sure I know my business and handle my business and make sure I understand my business, because that’s most important. Also, something I learned early on is just to be true to me and who I am, because of course when you’re not it can be bad for you especially in what we do. Especially if you’re trying to be like someone else or you’re trying to not really, when you don’t really know who you are, it’s kind of hard to have an honest project or do a song and it be honest if you don’t really know who you are.
Interview By. Priya Ramanujam