By Muniyra Douglas
Dubbed EDM soul queen Fridaee is not afraid to mix it up with pop, soul and R&B. Back in August 2017, she performed at the Honey Jam concert at the Mod Club theatre where she won the grand prize trip to perform in Barbados this past November.
Muniyra: You are dubbed the queen of EDM soul. Can you explain a little bit about that and what does it mean to be dubbed the queen?
Fridaee: Well everything that I do, I say... you have to be the best at it and I’m blossoming. We all are of queens and kings so, soul is because I grew up in R&B, soul, gospel background. That always played in my house. I used to perform in a children's choir. So, I really just used what I was surrounded by and put it into something unique and different. My voice is really soul full, so I was like...it’s soul on top of EDM which is different. Nobody’s done it. So…
Muniyra: You briefly mentioned your musical influence in the church. Can you elaborate more on your musical background?
Fridaee: I come from a musical family. It started with my grandparents. My grandmother actually fell in love with my grandfather because she heard him singing one day in Jamaica and said “I was gonna marry that man one day. “ And luckily for her he was good looking. So, that happened. My grandma had four beautiful children and just passed down the ability to sing throughout all her children, and my mother passed that down to me. And one day I saw this children's choir called CC3 perform and immediately I fell in love and I ran to the director, her name was Reverend Denise and I was like, “I want to be in your group.” and she was like “you have to be seven.” And I was like “Well I’m eight, so I can be in your group.” And that really just started my journey in music and performing.
Muniyra: So, do you have any professional or music education background at all?
Fridaee: Growing up? No... but going into high school, yes. I went to Rosedale Heights School of the Arts, it's right outside Castle Frank station. I got a scholarship to go to Ashley Ingram School of Music which is a private school and that’s where I honed my musical palette.
Muniyra: You occupy a couple of different genres. Is that something that was natural to you to develop? Or is it something that you consciously worked at and said “hey, this is a sound I wanna go with”?
Fridaee: The soul and R&B and gospel aspect, that was natural for me because that's what I was surrounded by. My house was always filled with music and especially because it’s Toronto, It’s very multicultural and I was surrounded by a lot more music outside of my household. I really loved how EDM and House make you feel good. You can’t help but move. Right? When you're listening to it. Though really it took me a while to figure out what I actually wanted to do when it came to music. I struggled a bit trying to do R&B, and then it just came to me and I was like, “why am I gonna struggle to something when it doesn't match my personality?” I’m a really bubbly loud extravagant person so I was like, why don't I put in something that I’m comfortable with something that makes me feel good, because I like to make other people feel good and just put it together and kind of blend the two worlds together and see what happens.
“Why am I gonna struggle to something when it doesn't match my personality?”
Muniyra: Is there anybody that you kind of get compared to at all?
Fridaee: Uh, people compare my voice to like, Jennifer Hudson... they talk about the powerhouse of it. When it comes to my sound I haven't really been compared to anybody yet. Um, I look forward to hearing what people have to say that I remind them of.
Muniyra: What was like working with DJ ‘Kill them with Colour’?
Fridaee: He was amazing. He is the most down to earth, cool guy that anybody could ever meet. Um, and he is crazy talented. The stuff that he comes up with when it comes to production is just like, I don't know how do you come up with these things? But, he's a dope guy, he's very funny.
Muniyra: Last year you had opened up for Donell Jones and SWV at the Academy stage, um what was that experience like?
Fridaee: It was amazing. Um, to be able to open for people that I grew up listening to because I’m the baby, my sister is also at my house listening to SWV, TLC, Donell Jones. Donell Jones is one of my middle sister's favourite artist um, and it was just—it was mind blowing. It was so-- it was crazy. I was in awe. It was real fan moment.
Muniyra: Where could our listeners go to check out Fridaee and check out your music?
Fridaee: Well you could check out my SoundCloud, everybodyloveszfridaee. You can go on YouTube, which is just Fridaee and my website.
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