Photo by: Juan Nieto
"How does it feel?"
There's something special about reggie. The Houston bred and LA based artist has just released a video for his first single of 2020. "Southside Fade" feels like the most authentic hometown anthem we've heard in a while and the music video reflects that. It serves as a pastiche for classic coming of age rap songs from the early 2000s. reggie's controlled cadence/croon over this laid back beat feels like the perfect soundtrack for every upcoming socially distanced bbq. But none of this is by accident.
reggie grew up in Houston in the church which is how he originally became drawn to music. reggie was always dedicated to music but life kept getting in the way. After getting kicked out of his house after continuously clashing with his parents about how he wanted to spend his time (not in church), he realized he had to learn to survive on his own and stop trying to please other people. After saving up enough money, a three month trip to LA to make music turned into the past three years of his life. Based on the sound of "Southside Fade," he made a great decision.
We caught up with reggie quickly via email to ask him a bit about his background, "Southside Fade", how LA has treated him, and connecting with his listeners. Read the full interview and watch the video for "Southside Fade" below.
Ones To Watch: What music did you grow up listening to?
reggie: I grew up listening to a lot of gospel and a lot of old school r&b. It wasn’t until later I got into hip hop n shit.
What was the main point of contention with you and your family's religious beliefs?
Honestly I had no problems with my family’s religious beliefs. They just wanted me there every week, 2-3 times almost. That definitely started making me lash out in my own private life. It was mostly their strict rules at home that got me in the most trouble.
What was the final straw that made you decide to leave home and pursue music seriously?
I definitely did not leave home on my own lol - I got kicked out with nothing to my name so I had to quickly find a way to get money and that was very easy to do in Houston.
After moving out, what did you learn about yourself?
That I could have BEEN did this on my own all along. I started making a lot of money after getting out of the house and it made me wonder why I had been putting up with my parents’ rules my whole life. It taught me I could literally do ANYTHING and acquire ANYTHING i wanted.
How did you handle the transition to Los Angeles?
With ease. I came out here with my own money from Houston, my own producers and some connections me and my manager had built from back n forth trips to California in the past. Funny thing is I guess it was easy because it was never supposed to happen. I was supposed to be here for 3 months and ended up staying for 3 years.
Has Los Angeles felt like the right move?
OH YEAH. There is NO WAY i could've made the music i’m about to show the world if i was still stuck in the environment i was in. Don’t get me wrong Houston made me but the energy in California saved me.
Take us through the concept of "Southside Fade" and its video.
"Southside fade" is definitely an ode to Houston's ups but also its downs. It’s all ironic to me which is why I say “my city so big it feel like you on top of the world if you on it”. To me it also seemed like the more up you were in Houston the more prone you were to NEVER leave. I’ve seen plenty of people not go worldwide because they were in love with being city wide.
The video is honestly just a documentary where I go and show the whole city and SOME of its staples like funplex and the car culture and some of the artists who are making the biggest buzz in it rn.
What do you want people to feel when they hear your music?
I want them to feel understood because that’s all I wanted. No matter what city you are in the story is the same. I had to really stop trying to live to please other people i.e. my family, friends, girls, the city and many other people and things. I had to do something for me,