EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW: Antonique Smith Talks Funding Her Own Album, ROMANCE With Rick Ross & New Friendship With Faith Evans
Antonique Smith, most notable for playing Faith Evans in Notorious and now, Rick Ross' main chick in his new "Amsterdam" video, recently chatted it up with TheYBF.com. She's embarking on a new singing career. So she dished on balancing her music and acting careers (she now calls Faith her friend), working with Ricky Rozay, and why she's paying for her own album!
East Orange, New Jersey native Antonique Smith is certainly a YBF chick we're paying attention to. When the Broadway actress decided to pursue a career in music, she knew exactly who she was and who she wanted her fans to see. Unfortunately, record companies didn't share the vision.
A little background on this fresh face we've seen, but don't know much about: Antonique was raised in the church and taught herself to sing by listening to Whitney Houston records. The 29-year-old tells us that Whitney was her "first vocal coach" since she mimic'd her voice to learn rifts and runs.
As for her music's sound, she calls it "pop soul with a hip hop fusion."
Antonique hated what we all know about the industry: Record companies control the artist, tell them who to be, who they can work with and what they can sing about. But for the feisty chick with a deep R&B voice, that didn't sit so well. So she decided to go the grassroots route and fund the record herself....with fan donations! (She raised over $9,000 after posting a clever clip to Kickstarter.)
On her upcoming album Speechless
I think fans will really like it. It talks about what I'm going through. I'm trying to keep it 100% pure so that's why I'm doing KickStarter. As an actress the fans are already seeing me in different ways because I'm playing someone else. So it's important for me to be myself when it comes to my music. It will be very personal.
On the album's title track "Speechless"
It's a long song about a guy who just means so much to you to you that you don't have the words to describe it. All you can say is 'Ummm'.
On how she started an acting career
I started acting in my grandmother's living room when I was 4. I used to record her own radio show on a small tape recorder where I played a variety of characters. Those skits eventually led to my first job as a teenage drug addict on [the TV series] "100 Centre Street." I remember my director said, 'She's a great actress with an amazing career ahead of her'.
On her lead role of "Mimi" in Broadway's RENT
I went through acting boot camp. I learned how to conserve my voice for 8 shows a week, that "the show must go on" and that you just have to "keep it moving." And once Lady Gaga appeared on the scene, it's allowed artists to get a little more theatrical in their live shows.
On playing the leading lady in Rick Ross's "Amsterdam" video
Working with Rick Ross was really great and I had a lot of fun on the set. They know how to treat a lady and Rick is a really nice guy. Maybe we can work together on one of my tracks if I raise enough to pay him!
On her breakout role in Notorious (pictured above with Faih Evans & co-star Anthony Mackie)
I definitely appreciate both Lil' Kim and Faith Evans, but I have an actual friendship with Faith. I hope I can work with her in the future as well. We're trying to figure out on what song, but we haven't narrowed it down.
Peep Antonique's Kickstarter video below:
And you can check out her current single "Speechless" below:
TheYBF.com will premiere Antonique's next single, "Take A Chance", tomorrow.