Yesterday morning, I had the pleasure of speaking to the lovely Grammy-award-winning singer-songwriter Chrisette Michele. A fan of her music and overall style for years, I was thrilled and humbled to be one of the bloggers to interview her. Chrisette has been diligently working on her upcoming music project, The Lyricist Opus, as well as her new blog/website Rich Hipster. She’s also been busy filming the latest season of R&B Divas LA. With so much going on, Chrisette still took the time to graciously share her thoughts on beauty, style, fashion, current events, and more. Following Chrisette’s style evolution from her first album, I Am, I can tell that she appreciates vintage and thrifted pieces. So, of course, I had to throw in a question about thrifting.
Who are your mentors and how did you find them?
I have so many right now. India Arie is one of them; we started off being signed to the same label. She came to see me perform at an open mic night one day without knowing I’d be performing and ended up taking me on tour with her. She’s been my mentor ever since. Iyanla Vanzant is another person I speak to often, just to talk and get advice from. Pattie Label, Lionel Richie – these are just people I’ve met, maybe backstage or on stage; they decided to give me their phone numbers and told me to keep in touch. They’ve been very helpful throughout my life.
What are 3 of your top vintage/thrifted pieces?
(1) Those long silk kimonos. You throw them on with a white tank top, a pair of ripped-up jeans, stilettos, and all of a sudden, you’re fabulous! (2) Levi’s jeans – the cutoffs you get in the summertime. They last for a really long time, you can ruin them bleach, and they cost like $7-$10! (3) This long rectangular patent leather French Connection clutch I got in San Francisco. It has golden, and sequin stripes across it and was like $6…brand new with tags and everything! I carry it with me everywhere I go when I want to be fabulous!
How do you determine who you want to collaborate with?
It’s all about the vibe. We have to connect, and I have to understand why you’re making the music. Usually, I’m in the studio hanging out with the person I’m working with before we even make the song. Most of the hip-hop collaborations I’ve done, I met them outside of the studio and hung out. I mean, it took hanging out with Jay-Z 4 times before I could execute my part on the song correctly. It’s really about friendship and a connection.
Chrisette also explained that as she grows as an artist, she has a “responsibility to let her fans know what she’s doing,” hence the launch of Rich Hipster and her decision to join the cast of R&B Divas of LA. From watching her on R&B Divas, you can see that she’s willing to open up and share (most of) her thoughts and feelings with the other ladies. And despite the tension between her and Chante Moore, Chrisette made sure she let me know that “women can get along even if they don’t like each other – they can figure it out.”
Chrisette’s excitement for her next musical project, The Lyrics Opus, was evident, and I, too, cannot wait for the musical masterpiece to drop! She explained that “this is what real music looks like” and says there will be no rap or hip-hop collaborations with this project. And as far as launching Rich Hipster, this is the 1st time she” has not been afraid.” When you visit the site, it’s clear that she’s inviting you into her world. She shares outfit posts, some behind-the-scenes footage of crafting The Lyricist Opus, and so much more. It’s quite an enjoyable experience! I applaud and commend her on being so fearless with her vision. I admire that.
So tell me, have you checked out Chrisette Michele’s new site? Are you excited about her upcoming project? Let me know!
Again, I was truly honored to have an opportunity to chat with Chrisette yesterday. She has a sweet spirit and is not afraid to show the world who she is. For more on her upcoming projects, visit Rich Hipster and be sure to catch her on Wednesday nights on R&B Divas of LA. I’m really looking forward to finding out the outcome of that “I Know Right” collaboration with her, Chantè Moore, Leela James, and Lil Mo. Mmmm…. 😉
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