INTERVIEW: H*Wood

Rodney "Darkchild" Jerkins is certainly bringing his A-Game with the artists he is signing to his Darkchild Records. I've already stated my excitement regarding Purple Reign, so now let me introduce to you Darkchild's first protege -- and first signee to the new label -- H*Wood.

H*Wood is a young singer/songwriter by way of Colorado, in between being a rapper and a melodic singer. Think Akon mixed with Kevin Rudolph combined in a blender Tiesto and David Guetta in terms of sound and drunk through a urban-twinged RedOne straw (OK, that metaphor got way out of hand). His debut single, "Could It Be You (Punk Rock Chick)" is gunning for radio adds as we speak, and is heavy on the synth without compromising the typical club sound. Like Purple Reign, H*Wood is preparing a mixtape  dubbed "52/80" very shortly, prior to his actual debut album, release date undetermined. The single is available for purchase on iTunes, and has already been dubbed a "Song of the Summer" for 2010 by Ryan Seacrest himself. You can preview the song yourself at H*Wood's official website.

Like his label mates, H*Wood is still in the early stages, and "Could It Be You" is beginning a promising ascent into the Rhythmic radio market. The single only began truly impacting in early May -- so its still in its infancy in terms of arc, and certainly has a great summer time feel. While I enjoy the song,  it doesn't really show off all that he can do. I'm more interested by H*Wood's potential as an artist -- and am definitely look forward to more material in the coming months. 

This past week, I got the chance to ask H*Wood himself a few questions about himself, his relation to the legend that is Darkchild, his sound and his future plans. Many many thanks to H*Wood and to Nathan and everyone at Baby G Music/Darkchild Records! I'm proud to be one of the first bloggers to write about H*Wood, and there will definitely be more coming. With that said...click the cut to read more.



You're so young! How long have you been writing and pursuing music?
Honestly, iStarted writing/pursuing music at age 18 with my little brother Kidd Vegas in our group "The Deaux Boyz" after iGave up my dreams as an NFL player and decided to leave college. At 20, iLeft Colorado to pursue a solo career in the city of dreams Los Angeles...

You're the first artist signed to Darkchild's new label imprint. How did you get involved with him?
How Rodney and I met is still the biggest moment of my life. I had just finished recording my EP with Mark Jackson Productions and we just started sending my music out to record labels and with God's direction my music landed in Rodney's Hands. iWoke up for work the next day to a text from my producer Mark saying, "Rodney Jerkins wants to meet you today at 4pm....He wants to sign you!!!" The rest was history.... 
[Mel's Note: It should be noted that "Could It Be You (Punk Rock Chick)" was produced by Mark Jackson.] 

How involved is Rodney in your album's production process? Is he producing the entire album?
iActually just had my first meeting about the album with Rodney discussing the direction we want to go. Rodney is very involved with my project but he is also open to the ideas iHave for my debut release. He will be doing a lot of the production but I'm also bringing in some producers with influences from specific genres that iThink will mesh with the vision Rodney and I have for the album. I'm SO Excited!!!!  

How would you describe your musical style?
Hmm...My musical style is all about having a good time. As we all know our economy is not the greatest which puts a lot of people in a depressive state of mind. iWant my music to distract people from all the stresses of daily life even if its just for the 4 minutes my song plays. iWant to re-surge people with energy because like the last Black Eyes Peas album The Energy Never Dies.....

You're first single, "Could It Be You (Punk Rock Chick)" is available now and namechecks a lot of famous artists on the scene right now like Rihanna and Lady Gaga. Are you big fans of these artists? If you could cover a song by either of them and give it your own personal flair, what would it be?
iAm a HUGE fan of both Lady Gaga and Rihanna, iLove them as vocalists, performers, business women, and they are both SUPER SEXY with their own style. If iCould remix a record from each of them it would be "Please Don't Stop the Music" by Rihanna because the beat is crazy and she samples my idol Michael Jackson! iWould also remix "Paparazzi" by Lady Gaga because for some reason every time iHear that record iCan literally picture the Paparazzi all around me lol....iLove that record.  

Ryan Seacrest has dubbed your single as one of the Summer Anthems of 2010. How do you feel about that?
Ryan Seacrest has a huge influence on Pop Culture so for him to say that about "Could it Be You"... Speechless.....Ryan has been showing so much love to my music and iAppreciate it a lot...iHope that one day iCan be as huge as an influence on another new artist's career as he has mine. THANKS MR.SEACREST!!!!

Rather than putting out an album first, you're working on a mixtape project? Can you tell us more about it?
Yes, Rodney and I felt that we should further introduce myself and my music to the world so "52/80", the mixtape, was born. I'm really excited about this project because iPersonally feel no mixtape has ever been done like this. "52/80" is also the first project I've ever co-produced on along with Mark Jackson Productions so I'm being introduced as a producer too which is huge! "52/80" is hosted by Rodney Jerkins and The Los Angeles Leakers of Power 106, it's set to be a digital release for free download this month on my website www.HwoodWorld.com and LosAngelesLeakers.BlogSpot.com. Stay Tuned on my Twitter (@OfficialHwood) for more details!!  

If you could collaborate with anybody in the pop realm right now, who would it be?
iLove this question because iHope she reads this lol....iWant to do a song right now with Katy Perry!! Katy is another female artist that iHave a tremendous amount of respect for. She is extremely talented and iDon't even need to bring up how hot she is lol....iThink her and I on a record has #1 written all over it!  Hi KATY!!!! LOL

Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
Ten years from now I'll be 32 so iSee myself still making hit music as an artist, introducing new artists to the world as a writer/producer, and being the best Dad to my son.

Do you have any touring plans?
Touring plans are being worked on as we speak. I've already been doing some traveling for shows all over the west coast but I'm ready to start traveling all over and leaving the country for the first time!! With the way everything has been going with my music this early I'm sure you'll be seeing me on a stage in a city near you very soon!!

Message for the fans?

To all my fans old and new...THANK YOU SO MUCH for supporting my music with all the kind messages, YouTube videos, pictures,etc. iLove you all and I'm working my ass of to continue making incredible music for ya'll!! Stay in touch with me on twitter(@OfficialHwood), I've been doing pretty good at getting back to everyone so far so Holla at me!! All my Punk Rock Chicks and Go-Go Girls iFreakin Love you!! iStill havent found that ONE yet though so Baby Could it Be You?? 303

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