Zonnique Pullins, the daughter of power couple Tiny and T.I. Harris, is all grown up and is ready to pursue a solo career after her girl group, the OMG Girlz, disbanded. Pullins was born into a superstar family so it couldn’t be more apparent that this 20-year-old beauty is destined for stardom. Pullins has released her first single, “Worst Friday,” from her first music project now available on iTunes and Google Play for download. She spoke with rolling out to further discuss the transition from being a group member to performing on her own, the support of her family, and her new acting career.
Congratulations on the new addition to your family. What was your reaction when you found out your mother was having a girl?
At first, I was really kind of jealous. I was like my mom is having a girl so I was really skeptical about it. I was like she is going to love the baby more than me. She said, ” You know you are my first and I’m not going to love anybody more than you.” Now that she’s here I am so in love with her. I go see her every day. I feel like I’m her mom. I’m like mom when are you going to go feed my baby because I’m just so ready for her to come home and take care of her. I feel like I will be taking care of her the most even though they laugh about it. I’m not really good at taking care of kids and dogs.
wWhat was the transition like from being in a girl group to going solo?
The transition has been pretty good. I’ve just been trying to figure it out as I go. The timing is a little difficult when it comes to trying to figure out the best time to put something out and battling with all these other artists who are throwing out things. You have to figure out when it’s the right time and the perfect time for you and your fans. I feel like my fans are always ready for new things, so I always feel like I can throw it out there like today and it will be alright. My mom and my team usually tell me no and that I have to wait and plan it. We have just been figuring it out as we go.
Were your family and former group members supportive of the direction you wanted to go with your career as a solo artist?
When I said I wanted to go solo, my parents and family were like so supportive. They told me it’s going to be OK and that I just need to get a couple of dancers and some background singers and I’ll be fine. I was like, you know, it might be a little tricky at first because I was really nervous when I had to do my first performance. My whole family was there and my group members were there. I felt like I had to really do good and impress everybody. When I got on stage, it felt like normal. When I got in the studio for the first time by myself it felt like normal and it has actually been okay transitioning into a solo artist. We are definitely all supportive of each other. We always plan to do things together.
What can fans expect from the new album?
My fans can expect lots of good music. I plan on putting out a whole project of music this year. Also, videos and great visuals. I want to get into acting this year, so hopefully you see me on a couple shows or a movie.
Describe the vibe of your new music.
The music is more R&B and pop. It’s like a mix of it, but I want to say more pop than R&B. It has a really strong mix between the two. It’s got up-tempos and slow ballads. It’s just a mixture of all types of things.
Are there any collaborations on the new project?
Right now, I only have my single featuring Young Thug on it. It’s my first single called “Nothing for free.” Since that, I have had more time to work on it. At first, I just wanted Young Thug to be my only feature and everything else be just me since it’s my first project, but the more I work on it the more open I am to having people on the songs. We just have to wait and see.
What are you doing in your day-to-day routine to prepare yourself for a solo career?
The things that I’ve been doing lately just to prepare myself is getting up and running. When I was in a group I felt like okay I have to keep my stamina up so I can be able to sing, but now I can’t get breathe while the other girls are doing her part. I’ve just been outside running and trying to really get my breath up. Other than that just singing around the house and just being comfortable in my tone. I’m just really working on myself as a style has matured tremendously over the past few years and is edgier than before.
How would you describe it now?
My style is comfortable. I really like to dress comfortable and I have this little bodysuit on today so it’s a little risky but it is really comfortable. I really just thrown on whatever I have in the closet, but I like baggy stuff. I like baggy in the pants area and like a cut-off top. Now that I’m getting a little fit I like to show my stomach a little more.
What kind of pressure do you feel from social media and how do you handle negative comments on your image?
Well, when it comes to bad comments I feel like it comes with the fame. It comes with the career and I take all the opinions and stuff in and see how I feel about it. If I fee they are right about something then I change it, but other than that it doesn’t bother me. People have been talking about me all my life. I have heard that negative talk is good talk also so that’s how I look at it. I definitely get a lot of people saying “She is trying to grow up too quick.” I feel like I am 20 years old and I know it’s not that old. I think that my parents have pretty much taught me to be well-behaved. I’m not an out-of-control kid so when it comes to the things that I wear or the things that I say in my music some people are like that’s not really her. They don’t really know what I have going on. What I talk about in my music is what I have going on. It’s just me.
What advice do you have advice for young girls dealing with cyber bullying?
I think that if you’re dealing with cyber bullying you have to figure out a way to boss-up. If someone says something that kind of hits home you can’t be that mad about it. You have to accept it for what it is. You just have to own it.
Are you currently dating?
Right now I am in a pretty fresh relationship with someone that I went to school with actually, and he is a football player. We don’t have to speak on that too much.
What made you want to get into acting?
I just feel like acting would be a great thing to jump into from singing and being able to perform. You’re already in the people’s eyes and already doing your thing. I have already been on a reality TV show so I would just like to branch off and try new things. I do really love music but I feel like It’s not really paying like it uses to. I ask my stepdad a couple questions when I get scripts, but every time he answers, I feel like he is really like an expert at it. He makes it sound so simple, when I feel like it’s not. After a while, he will kind of break it down to me and give me little pointers here and there. He just says you have to really get into the character and that seems hard at first.
What kind of roles do you want to play?
I would love to do romance and anything evil. I know I’m like a sweetheart but my family who really knows me say I have a mean streak. Some people say I’m the meanest in the family, which is not true. I think it would be easy to play a mean girl in school or like a vampire.
What are some beauty tips you have to share?
I’m not that really good with makeup and I’m just now getting into natural hair. I did twist outs in my hair last night for the first time. I am really trying to get to that.
Why did you decide to go natural with your hair?
My hair straight is like my least favorite style because after a while it just looks really plain. It’s my favorite when it’s really wild and curly. I used to do flexi rods but I got really lazy, so I was like I have to start training my hair so it will get curly. I didn’t want to have to keep putting heat on it and I just put some blonde on my tips so I don’t want my hair to fall out. My biggest thing was my hair falling out because I change my color so much. My mom used to do the same thing and it’s a little short now.
How did you feel the first time you wore your hair natural?
The first time it looked really crazy even before I was curling it. I would blow dry it and it would be wild. Honestly, if my hair doesn’t look good, I don’t want to go anywhere. Sometimes I blow-dry my hair out and I will still go out. If it’s wild, I feel comfortable even though other people are looking at me like, “she needs to get her hair done.” At the top, it doesn’t always look that good and that makes me a little uncomfortable. I just keep spreading #Blackgirlmagic.
When you hear the term #Blackgirlmagic what does that mean to you?
It makes African Americans appreciate when you wear your hair natural and wild. I think of Black girls empowering each other and Black girls doing their thing and showing their talents. Being able to broadcast every little thing that we do that’s so great. Just us taking over the world, one day at a time.