This week we chatted with Reggii, a Los Angeles based independent artist. I met Reggii through TikTok, of all places, via an outreach video I posted for Stay Vibrant. From there, we began chatting and that is when I learned about their newest single "Snow Globe" and the incredible way it came about. The absolute creative genius that lies within this artist, is astounding. I have been following their journey on TikTok for a few weeks now and it has been nothing short of amazing. Whether they're jamming out, doing a cover or showcasing some new music - it all is so seamless. Believe it or not, they had the luck to find the one and only Charlie Puth on Omegle and got to share their song, Snow Globe, with him: here. Take a gander at all we talked about and stream their newest single below!
Hi Reggii!! I am so stoked to have you featured here on Stay Vibrant. Firstly, how are you doing and can you do a little intro into who you are, for the readers?
Hey Colton! Thanks so much for having me! I am an independent artist and songwriter based
out of Los Angeles. I’m staying busy but I’m doing well.
You just released a song, Snow Globe, but the process is kind of wild. Can you explain the writers group and how you wrote the song? I am pretty amazed at the whole process.
Yes! A couple of years ago, some friends and I made a songwriting group where we challenged each other to write a new song and play it for the group every week. We all wrote down potential song titles and put them in a hat and whatever you got is what you had to write. Someone wrote “Sandpaper Lips” as a joke and that’s what I got. This eventually became Snow Globe. To me, “Sandpaper Lips” represented a liar, and I had dated a couple of those in my past.
The next day, while walking to Trader Joes, I wrote the song.
It’s about the moment you realize that your partner is a liar, manipulator, and the relationship
isn’t going anywhere.
As soon as I got home I figured out the chords and finished the whole song in one evening.
The pandemic has completely changed what it meant to work together, especially in the realms of music production. What was it like doing the production all virtually with Javier?
This was definitely a learning experience for both of us, especially considering that I was in LA and he was in Mexico at the time. I had never really recorded myself on my own before. The whole song is actually just one take of me singing, believe it or not. I sang it all the way through once, completely improvised the bridge on the spot, YouTube searched how to bounce the track, and sent it to Javier. He then took what I sent and just created whatever came to him. Instead of brainstorming in the same room together, we both just made stuff up for it on our own time. He really brought the song to life in a way that I did not know was possible. It blew me away and inspired my backing vocals.
I really wanted live drums for this song so I brought in Danny Manning to record the drums separately from his house as well. Then Lorenna, one of my friends and music collaborators, helped program the live drums with Danny. The joint efforts of everyone really brought it all together into what it is today.
Speaking of 2020, the entire social dynamic has been uprooted and changed. I don't think I have ever been involved in more zoom calls in my life. What has been the biggest struggle for you during these past nine months, especially with mental health?
This is a great question! Social media, texting, and phone calls have always caused me a lot of anxiety; crippling at times. It was (and still is) really hard to get used to this new virtual life. I have found that though it’s not the same as being in the same room as someone, Facetime doesn’t feel too bad. It’s been a way that I can connect with people that doesn't cause as much anxiety. I have been very lucky to be able to work from home both with my day job and my music. I’ve been super busy, so in an attempt to stay on top of all my work and to stay calm, I literally have had to hide my phone so I can focus without distractions. I will say that I am learning new ways to be on social media that feel more natural and less forced. That has been really good for me as well. The next song I’m releasing touches on this struggle. Do you have any tricks or tips that keep you afloat and has writing music been a solid outlet for what you've been feeling during these times? I know, personally, doing these interviews and highlights as well as random courses have really kept my mind busy and afloat.
Yes! Spending time outside and writing music go hand in hand for me. A lot of my song ideas
come from my daily walks. There is something about just being outdoors in nature, away from my phone and the online world that removes the walls between me and myself. I haven’t written as many completed songs this year as I’d like but I probably have more fleshed out ideas and half-written songs than ever. My voice notes in my phone are overflowing. These spurts of inspiration have really gotten me through this year.
I definitely want to talk about the LGBTQ+ community, especially being a member myself and not seeing a ton of actual representation in entertainment. You identify as gender non-conforming, what does it mean to you to be a musician and to represent, in a way, a community that is so underrepresented?
Yes. I am gender non-conforming and just came out this year! Even though I have been this way my whole life, I haven't really allowed myself to come to grips with it until recently. It has freed me in a way that is beautifully overwhelming and that freedom is pouring itself out into my music as well.
Sometimes, I feel that I am not worthy of being a representation of the queer community since I am still so new to being out. Being a musician was actually what helped me to get real with myself and start expressing myself for me and not for others. How can I write, sing, and perform if I am not expressing who I really am? There are so many people like me who don’t see much representation of themselves in the public eye and that is part of why it took me so long to process who I am now. I barely had anyone to relate or look up to. I hope that my music can be a safe haven for others to get real with themselves and feel free to just be who they are without changing for anything or anyone else.
In light of that, what are you seeing in upcoming talent that makes you excited to be a part of this journey?
It’s been pretty exciting seeing big artists like Sam Smith and King Princess take the stage in this era of Pop music. Generally, I am a big fan of the indie scene. Some of my favorite queer artists right now are Jakob Ogawa, Kim Petras, Marika Hackman, and Emily King. I recently have been meeting and discovering fellow queer musicians like myself that are just getting started. I can’t wait to see how we are all going to grow and succeed together and form the next wave of queer artists!
Well, Reggii -- I am absolutely stoked, as I said, to have you. I am looking forward to the music that is coming and watch you continue to grow. What would you like to leave the readers with?
Once again, thanks so much for having me. It’s been an honor. I am currently working on music to be released in the new year. Until then, everyone should check out my newest single, “Snow Globe,” and head over to my Instagram and Tiktok for a weekly serenade. @reggiimusic
Snow Globe is streaming on all major platforms now, make sure to check it out and follow Reggii for new music and updates!