THEHIPHOPDIVA.COM had the pleasure of speaking with the polite and soft-spoken Jimmie Reign. With such a sweet personality there’s no wonder she’s making everyone who comes in contact fall in love with the Pretty Girl who is this week’s Underground DIVA of the Week.
HHD (HIPHOPDIVA): For our fan base go ahead and introduce yourself.
JR (Jimmie Reign): My name is Jimmie Reign, I’m a singer and songwriter. I’m from California, the Bay area.
HHD: You started your career as an artist about three years ago. You’ve already written and opened for some industry veterans. What do you attribute your quick and early success to?
JR: I was kind of under the radar for a long time. I started writing when I was about 17. I’m 29 now so that was a while ago. I had my first placement when I was 19. I decided about five or six years ago that I wanted to sing and do my own thing. I was tired of everyone else singing my stuff. So, I think the connections I made when I was just a songwriter are really what helped me to be able to open for people like Keyshia Cole.
HHD: Describe your ideal fan.
JR: My ideal fan is definitely someone who appreciates music, who appreciates lyrics, who appreciates a story and can identify with a story. I think my target audience is a little more neo-soul, R&B. The audience that comes to my shows, they’re usually college age and then up. It’s people who are really looking to hear something musical.
HHD: If you had to sum up your lyrical and musical style with one word what would it be?
HHD: Were you trained to be a singer or were you just a great songwriter with the ability to sing and you’re going off raw talent?
JR: I’ve never been formally trained. But my father is a singer and my mother is a singer and they both were in the entertainment industry. Both of my sisters sing as well. My dad always focused on the creative aspect like the songwriting, like the poetry. I think that’s because he wanted us to know there was more than being an entertainer.
HHD: Where do you pull the inspiration for your song lyrics?
JR: I am definitely inspired by my everyday life. My whole entire album is about things that have happened to me in my life. It’s very real, real life experiences. If it’s not something I’ve gone through I’ve supported a friend going through it or my sister or my mother.
HHD: Tell me something about Jimmie Reign that people wouldn’t ordinarily know about you and be surprised to hear.
JR: I’m actually really shy. When I get on stage I feel att home there. Normally I’m very shy, I’m very stand-offish, sometimes it may come across as me being stuck up. But I’m really not. I’m not outgoing, I’m antisocial.
HHD: Is there a female hip hop artist that you would love to collaborate with and why?
JR: I love Lil Kim. I have just adored her and idolized her for a long time. When she came out there was none like her. She didn’t care what people said about her or thought about her. She was like I’m here and you’re going to like me and I’m going to take over. I’ve always wanted to work with her and I’ve always wanted to meet her.
HHD: Right now your debut album, “Pretty Girl” is available. What’s up next for you?
JR: We’re just really pushing the album. We’re scheduling some dates for college tours. I’m hoping to gain a fan base over on the east coast.
HHD: What is your definition of a hip hop diva?
JR: Taking over with no holds barred. Not having any shame about being strong and independent.
Jimmie Reign’s debut album “Pretty Girl” available now http://www.jimmiereign.com
Follow Jimmie Reign on twitter @jimmiereign
Check Jimmie Reign out on MySpace at www.myspace.com/jimmiereign1