Meet @IrieReyna – South Florida’s Next RnB Queen
Irie Reyna is an r&b/soul princess from Pembroke Pines, FL who is proving to be a bright talent in the South Florida music scene. It is still fairly early in her career, but she has already peaked the interests of many local curators and talents across the region.
Irie brings an enchanting, neo soulful vibe to every track she lays out. It is hard not to find yourself in a relaxed, yet emotionally vulnerable state while listening to one of her songs. This is definitely a songstress on the rise.
It is an honor for UNDERVIEWS to sit down and dissect the mindset of such a bright starlet, and she proves to be just as insightful and positive in conversation as she is on a beat.
Tell us about what first made you start making music. How did this all begin?
I started out writing poetry. We used to have journals in my English class in high school and we’d spend half of the class just expressing ourselves in response to whatever the topic of the day was. I was invited to poetry club multiple times until I finally went, and honestly it was like I had felt heard for the first time. I struggled for a good five years after that trying to merge from poetry to songwriting. I would get so frustrated because I felt like I couldn’t find my own flow. It took writing so many songs and throwing them out, until I finally went at it all last year. Then in October, I recorded what I considered to be my first polished track.
So you’ve only been a recording artist for less than a year, but have made a pretty big SPLASH in such a small time. How do you plan to keep South Florida on notice about your talent? What makes you so special?
Well thank you. The response has been nothing less than encouraging. I just plan on showing the different sides of me. I have many layers to myself and I’m putting a lot of thought behind how I allow others to see the world through my eyes in the most authentic way I could imagine. Whether it’s the visuals, lyrics, or open dialogue in an interview like this. If I could just have one person feel it then that is what will make it special.
How did you get in the mood to create? What is your creative process like?
I’m a total weirdo. I have this thing for my bath tub. I mean, bathrooms do have the best acoustics in my defense but I have made my own creative nest. I have to be in a mood of just peace in my thoughts & I cannot force a beat to flow. I like to think it’s my own form of meditation. I freestyle all the songs I write so that’s why I record them in voice memos. From there I listen back & polish the structure. The most annoying thing ever is when I say some fire shit & forget what it is I said!
Tell us about your inspirations. Who/What keeps you pushing?
I’m a very family oriented person. I tell them more than they want to know and we’ve all been through some sh*t together. Overall I guess because i’ve had a lot go on close to home, I’m kind of just able to see things more for what it is. It’s annoying, but in some of the most difficult times my pops would just tell me “it is what it is” and that frustrated me for the longest until I realized he’s always just kept it real with me. Now I appreciate him for keeping things black & white because I’m able to be more of who I am.
Where do you see your career in the future, say 4 years?
I really just see myself having my own wave by then. I don’t like identifying with a single genre so much because I want to be able to incorporate my sound in different music. I will be in a whole other chapter of my life which I’m sure I’ll be asking myself what I’m gonna do to top my next move. My mind never stops. It’s awfully bittersweet but by the time I come up for a breath of air, I just see how much experience I’m collecting & that can be very addicting.
You only have 3 singles (knee slap) so go ahead and walk us through your previous singles “Just Chill”, “The Message” & “Declaration” featuring Element Jetson. What was the inspiration behind these songs?
The Declaration was recorded in my bedroom with half cracked-out headphones. Element has grown with me since our poetry club days so anything we collaborate on feels natural. We’re always there to remind each other to not lose focus on the music.
Just Chill was my first cool Soundcloud experience; after dropping The Message I had a great response from producers wanting to work. This one in particular (EMERLD) was from Germany and he sent me a file with a few beats that I heard potential in. It was about a week later when he hit me up randomly saying he made a beat out of the blue that he thought I’d like. It took me less than an hour to write it & the next day I went in the studio to record. The whole thing was a vibe.
The Message was a testament to this start for me. I’ve always recorded voice memos of myself singing when I’m creating a new song. I was sitting on my bedroom floor when it came to me & when I brought it to the studio I recorded it in one take to maintain the flow of it being a single recording. I’m just glad people are listening.
What are your plans for 2017? Any features, shows or possible projects you plan to share with the world that you’d like to mention?
2017 has been my year of really solidifying my identity. I consider anything I work on to be a product of chemistry. I’m not looking for any features, but if the vibe is there then I don’t fight it. I’m really in progress of producing a lot more content to showcase. Songs, visuals, and I’m definitely looking to start live performances to meet more of the crowd. I do have a project in the works that I’m very excited to put together as my first EP.
We got to your talents early! Nice having you Irie! To wrap up, do you have any advice for other upcoming local artists out there trying to make a way for themselves?
Take your time. Kinda ironic how that’s the first thing that comes to mind considering the fact I struggled with it so much myself. I realize that I would’ve been unsatisfied had I released any of my earlier work because I’m a completely different person now. Granted, we’ll all grow and you gotta start somewhere.. my point is to just do it and have it polished before you dump things on the internet. Take the time to get to know yourself as an artist and be strategic in your appeal. Be comfortable in your own skin because people be hating so you have to come prepared. It’s all yours.
3 Favorite Artists (all time) – Lauryn Hill, Bob Marley, Amy Winehouse
3 Favorite Artists (current) – Anderson Paak, KDot, Alina Baraz