Caribbean soul singer Kenya Eugene is an internationally acclaimed entertainer who hails from St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands. A talented singer and songwriter, she’s also a model and actress with an impeccable style and warm spirit. Eugene’s genuine love of music comes across the stage during live performances leaving audiences spellbound.
She was handpicked to open for some of today’s biggest artists, including Wyclef Jean, Big Mountain and Bambu Station; in addition she has shared the stage with India.Arie, Morgan Heritage, Dezarie, and Rock City.
Maintaining the integrity of her music is important to Eugene as she shares her music on the global stage. Her latest CD is titled If I Could.
Read what she has to say.
How did you arrive at this career choice?
I think I always knew what I wanted to do with my life. Ever since I was little girl, all I ever really wanted to do was sing.
Was it a deliberate decision or a gradual and natural evolution?
I’d have to say it was deliberate.
What separates you from others in your field?
Some people sing just because they can sing, but I sing straight from the heart. I sing what I feel, and can relate to. Also, being an R&B soul artist from the Caribbean, I bring a totally different style/flavor with my music which comes naturally. I am also not just a singer, but a writer.
What is unique to the experience that you create?
I bring the Heart Music experience. When the music plays, my heart speaks. I bring my truth, my heartfelt emotions and my passion for life.
For those considering entering this arena, what skill sets do you recommend mastering? What traits are most conducive to success?
I would say vocal care should be first and foremost, which not only includes proper care of your vocal cords, but also vocal performance.
Know and focus on the business side of the music industry as well as your talent.
Keep your circle air tight, and surround yourself with people who are not only big dreamers, but also go-getters.
Perseverance is key; never give up! And most importantly, know your worth.
How do you stay at the leading edge of your craft?
I am constantly honing my writing and vocal skills.
Do you think that there are any widely held misconceptions about what you do? If so, what are they and how do you work to dispel them?
As an R&B artist coming from the Caribbean, a lot of people expect my music to be totally influenced by Caribbean music. The truth is, yes my music is somewhat influenced by my culture and native music, but it is not dominated by it. All I can do is stay true to my craft.
How do you map out your goals? How do you measure your success?
I write and visualize my goals step by step, gather as much information as I can, then put them into action. Fame and notoriety are a great sign of success, but I measure success by the amount of control and freedom an artist has over their musical creations and performances.
Who do you consider to be your peers in your field? Who do you see or use as examples to emulate?
I would have to say Whitney Houston, Celine Dion, Sade, Adele, and Anita Baker are my top picks.
Name two of your top role models: one from your industry and one from outside of it.
My two top role models would have to be Celine Dion, I love the way her career has been molded. She is a woman of class, with an impeccable voice. My second role model would be my mom, because she is the strongest, and most forgiving woman I know.
Name three books, works, performances or exhibits that changed how you view life and/or yourself.
–You Can Be Happy No Matter What, by Richard Carlson
–The Mis-education of the Negro, by Carter G. Woodson
Why do you consider continued learning important?
Yes I do consider continued learning to be important, but I think that also depends on what your future goals are.
What affirmations do you repeat to yourself that contribute to your success?
So you act, so you feel, so you are.
What role does technology play in your day-to-day life? How do you utilize it?
Social media is a really big deal! In fact, it seems like everybody in the music industry judge artists’ level of skill or talent based on social media numbers, and not by what they can actually do. Which I think makes no sense at all, but that’s the way it is. Because of my career I have to utilize social media to keep fans engaged and informed as to what I’m doing. I’m not a pro yet, but i’m getting better, lol!
What software, app or other technological innovation has made the biggest difference in your life and/or career?
That would be Facebook.
If you could change one thing about the world, what would it be?
If I could change one thing about this world, I would take away the Hate. Hate is what fuels racism and everything bad in the world today.
If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?
I wouldn’t change anything. My flaws keep me humble.
What does it take to be iconic? In your estimation, who has achieved that status?
To be iconic, you have to be willing to go the extra mile no matter what.
Celine Dion, Beyoncé, Michael Jackson, and just too much to even mention right now.
What keeps you inspired?
I am inspired when I meet fans and they tell me how my music has affected their lives in a positive way.
What Scripture(s) are you leaning on?
“Yea though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for thou art with me …”
How do you stay connected with fans?
I stay connected with my fans via social media, www.facebook.com/kenyaheartmusic,
What’s on your playlist?
I’ve got several play lists on my phone, but here’s just a few songs I like listening to:
-“Bound to You”- Christina Aguilera
-“The Worst” -Jhené Aiko
-“Gravity” – Sara Bareilles
-“I Can’t Make You Love Me”- Tank
-“The Power of Love” – Celine Dion
-“Someone Like You” – Adele
Where did you vacation this summer?
Haven’t gone on my summer vacation as yet.