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Exclusive interview with Teena, a female musician, and producer

Exclusive interview with Teena, a female musician, and producer.

Teena is an American singer, songwriter, and producer from Long Island, New York. She started playing with Garageband loops and gets really creative with some funky bass lines. In 2019, she released her first album called “Cranberry”.

If you aren’t familiar with Teena read on. We had a chance to interview Teena about her background and achievement so far in the music industry.

Hi Teena, Tell us about your background getting to where you are today?

Teena: I started out as an independent musician back in 2018. That’s when I released my first album, “Cranberry”! I started playing shows and meeting tons of new musicians. I was able to get connected and start collaborating with some lovely individuals. Things flourished over the years, and now I’m gearing up for the release of my first major project!

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2: Where are you from?

Teena: I’m from Long Island, New York! 🙂

 

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3: How did you get into music?

Teena: When I was in my freshman year of college at SUNY Fredonia, I got my first Macbook Pro. I started fiddling on Garageband and teaching myself the software. I started getting really creative and experimented with some funky bass lines. Before you know it, I was creating my own little projects. I was inspired to write my first album “Cranberry” over a breakup. It was really difficult to process, so songwriting was really cathartic. It helped me manage my emotions and become a better version of myself.

 

4: What is the most challenging thing you have overcome in your life?

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Teena: The most challenging obstacle was learning how to love me for who I am. I knew I was gay from a really young age, and I had a few “friends” out me as I was growing up. This made me hide for so long and feel like it was wrong to be who I was. Once I started to own myself and love myself, it didn’t matter what people thought. I was able to come into a new version of myself! It was awesome to reach that stage of acceptance.

 

5: Are you currently signed or independent?

Teena: I am currently signed to Elton Audio Records. I connected with Louis Elton (an artist manager) who also runs the company, and since then I feel like my sound has only grown.

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6: Who inspires you the most musically?

Teena: Caroline Polachek is my biggest inspiration. She’s been in the industry for quite some time. She used to be in this band called Chairlift that I really love. She’s got the most avant-garde, synthy, futuristic sound. It’s just so sonically pleasing. I’ve been creating so many of my own productions that are inspired by her sound. She’s so cool because she’s written and produced for artists like Beyonce, Travis Scott, Blood Orange, and more – but you never heard her name for years. Not until she started releasing her own stuff, and then it blew up. She’s got such a unique style and a killer voice. She’s a badass woman, and she’s a testament to the fact that you can be over the age of 30 and still be making it in the industry.

 

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7: What do you want people to take away after listening to your music?

Teena: I aim to create a vision in people’s heads. I want them to feel the raw emotion of my music. I want to put them in the exact time, place, and situation of what I’m going through so that it creates this image. Most importantly, I want them to be able to relate and be moved by my messages. Empowering people is my biggest goal.

 

8: What is your greatest achievement as a musician?

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Teena: My biggest achievement to date is working with Eren Cannata of Warner Chappell Records. He produced my song, “Strangers In My Bed”. Eren is an incredible musician, producer, and guy in general. He also produces for some major artists, so this opportunity was incredible to ha

 

9: Do you produce your own music? If not who do you work with?

Teena: I do produce, but my skill is not yet where I want it to be. This is why I work with producers! My process involves writing and then taking it to the studio. I just kind of free-write lyrics, and then I improvise a melody based on the words. I turn to producers because I want to create only the best, most polished version of my music. Some of the main producers I have worked with are Eren Cannata, Nikademis, and some others under my current label.

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10: Who is one artist you wish you could work with?

Teena: Isaac Dunbar. Hands down! I am astonished by him. He’s not only an insane vocalist, but he’s an amazing producer. He’s able to experiment and flirt with so many different styles – especially in his new album “Evil Twin.” I find him to be such an inspiration. I also feel like our voices would sound incredible together.

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11: Tell us about any new music you have coming out? When is coming out? What is it about?

Teena: I’m so excited about my new music! The release date is still being decided. My new album plays with the idea of astrology, retrogrades, space, and has an overall futuristic vibe. Star Wars fans will love it! It’s a breakup album, with an interesting twist in its concept

 

12: What does a day inside your shoes look like?

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Teena: If you’re in Teenatown (ba dum tiss), you’re having fun! Haha. I really try to get out and just enjoy the sun. I love to write, produce, and find new musical influences. If I’m not doing that, I’m probably just doing some homework, to be honest.

 

13: Anything else you want the audience to know about you?

Teena: Go listen to “Teena” on Spotify, Apple Music, and all the streaming services! Also, check out www.teenatown.com for new updates! Thanks so much! 🙂

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What do you think? Drop a comment below…

 

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Natalie is a journalism major with a focus on Entertainment and Music who aspires to become a Content Creator For Honk Magazine. Eventually, she wants to be the Publisher or Editor-in-Chief of a major Publishing House. She loves helping people find their voice and passion for writing and journalism, and she can always be found with coffee in hand, editing another article.

Artist Spotlight

Introducing J Menace: A Fast-Rising Musical Artist

J Menace is an upcoming Hip-Hop artist and songwriter that is gaining popularity very quickly, and on his way to becoming a superstar. Born and raised in Chicago, he has quickly accumulated thousands of followers on social media and is showing no signs of slowing down anytime soon.

Hello J Menace, Thanks for coming to Honk Magazine to talk about your career.

What 3 things does anyone starting in your industry need to know?

1: Have a plan. What do you want to do, and how do you want to do it?

2: Have people around you that you trust. 

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3: Be the hardest worker in the room.

What would you do differently if you were starting in your industry now?

I would spend my money much differently. You will lose money trying to figure out what and who works. That takes money, time and effort. There is no way around it. Imagine if you could skip that step….

Which people or books have had the most influence on your growth and why?

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Book wise “Think and Grow Rich” by Napoleon Hill. I’ve read that book 3 times and every time I learn something new. A great guide to having the proper mindset for growth. 

Too many people to name that had a ton of influence. However,  2 at the top would be 2Pac and my brother Leekwan. 2Pac because of how similar their lives were and how I could relate to his music. My brother because of the constant competition between us. It made me super competitive in all areas and nearly obsessed with growth. 

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What would you say is the #1 key to success in your music career?

The #1 would have to be consistent. There was a time when people said I didn’t have the look to rap…. I kept going. There was a time when people said I didn’t have the voice to rap… I kept going. Then it was I didn’t write good enough, pick the right production, or didn’t have the right type of funding. I never stopped, I pushed harder every time people denied me. Until I became undeniable.

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Talk about the biggest failure you’ve had. What did you learn from it?

The biggest failure had to be not keeping a successful group I started together. The true turning point of my career was 2015. 

I had just opted out of a deal with Universal and I was tired of the industry. I saw what they did to make others successful and decided I would try to mimic the format. I came up with an idea to put together a group of talented rappers with established fan bases (Thad Lu, Goonie Da Godd, Mz. Legit, King Kwan). 

The purpose was simple….there’s strength in numbers. The name of the group ended up being R.U.M.O.R.S (Relying Upon Music Over Regular S**t). My strategy was to do 3 to 4 shows a week until the right people noticed us. It definitely worked! We went from paying to do shows and perform in competitions, to being paid to do shows or just make an appearance. We got all the way to having a deal on the table and unfortunately, due to internal conflict, we parted ways as a group. However, we remain close to this very day. Sidenote: We lost a member last year. Love live Floyd Steele aka Goonie Da Godd. People still talk about us. Especially in Chicago. I’m not where I am today without this group. If I could go back, I would have figured out a way to make it work.

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What has been your biggest success story and why do you think it was a success?

My biggest success is my recently released album “A Night To Purge “. This is my best work to date and it has been received as such. From having more streams than all my previous albums combined in 1 month….to having the most viewed video (Chains) in my career. I think it’s a success because the timing is right. Sometimes it’s not just talent but timing. If you stay ready, when it’s your time, you’ll cease the opportunity. That is all I’m doing. 

What keeps you going when things get tough in the music industry?

The thing that keeps me going is my promise. As I’ve already stated, I lost a close friend in Floyd Steele A.K.A Goonie Da Godd last year. However, I also lost my older brother Tyrone Fisher last year. Both due to gun violence. Both of them believed in me. I made a promise to them that I would not let up until I majored in this industry. I will keep that promise. 

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What made you pursue being an artist full-time?

I wrote my first song in 8th grade. After everyone in my school started singing it, I was hooked. I was signed to my first label at the age og 16. I knew from that point on that this is what I wanted to do. 

Would you sign to a label?

I would if the deal is structured properly for sure. I’ve been in the industry a while. I know the pitfalls and the traps. It has to make sense on both ends or no deal.

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What projects are you working on for the rest of 2022?

Mainly pushing “A Night To Purge ” and multiple concerts. One of them being traveling state to state. Who knows….. I may start writing another album towards the end of the year. 

How can our readers follow you online?

FB: The Real J Menace & J Menace

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Ig: therealjmenace 

SC: jmenace23

Twitter: The Real J Menace

Youtube: J Menace

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Artist Spotlight

Exclusive Interview: Rising Artist Bxndzszn

Hello Bxndzszn, Thanks for coming to Honk Magazine to talk about your career.

Tell us a little more about when you first got into music?

For starters, music has always been a part of my life but I really fell into creating music based on it being my way of expressing myself due to me being an introvert .

If you could describe your sound/style in one word, what would it be and why?

If I could describe my sound/style in one word it would be evolutionarily because as I age so will everything else.

What would you say to any aspiring recording artists who look up to your work?

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I would tell  them to keep going no matter what and if that’s what they really want it is possible!

What quote or mantra do you live by?

“Get rich or die trying” and “with age comes wisdom”

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What is your hobby outside of music?

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Outside of music I really just like to enjoy life. My hobby outside of music would probably be me just staying positive and staying productive whether that’s playing the game or seeing the world.

Where do you see yourself in 5 years?

In 5 years, I see myself having achieved a lot of my goals in which I’ll be making music, living life, and spreading positivity. I am Bxndzszn !

Do you have anything new or upcoming we can expect to see from you?

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Lol I’m consistent so there will always be. But I plan on getting more music and content out!

What is the inspiration behind your latest song?

The inspiration behind my latest song “destiny “ is in alignment with my life and how it’s not all positive 

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What are your “5 things I wish someone told me when I first started” and why. Please share a story or example for each.

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Honestly this is a question that I can’t really answer because although there are things that I wish I was told… the fact that I did it for myself makes it more worth it, in my opinion of course!

Which tips would you recommend to your colleagues in your industry to help them to thrive and not “burn out”?

I’d recommend to them that breaks are very much needed and that mental health is very important. 

How can our readers follow you online?

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I go by Bxndzszn on all platforms EXCEPT Instagram in which it’s @fuckbxndzszn

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