Interview: Treasure Davis talks collaboration with Slick Rick 'Someone New', being a songwriter, and discovered by Mark Pitts
From her distinct vocals, to her bubbly personality -- the newly signed, Treasure Davis isn't such a new face in the industry as you might expect. She's already worked with Rico love, Kevin Mccall, along with and many others to writing songs like Chris Brown’s “Last Time Together”. With her new deal on the table, and a clear direction of where she wants to go (musically), Treasure recently released hew new video with Hip-hop pioneer Slick Rick, titled "Someone New" (RCA Records/Bystorm).
Can you tell us a little about the production process and working with Slick?It came from a conversation I had with Mark Pitts, we were talking about what kind of features could we do that wouldn't be typical, but that would be right in line with what I’m trying to given fans. Slick was the perfect person because he is a story teller, he actually came on board after I had written the original version and he blessed it with his verse. I grew up listening to him. His songs were probably one of the first rap songs I learned all the words to.
Based off your single, you’re bringing a 90's flair back into the mix, do you plan to carry a taste of the past but also a taste of the future in your new music.
Yeah you know definitely I’m drawn from a lot of different places, I grew up listening to a lot of Motown, a lot gospel, then I was introduced to a lot of alternative music and rock. And all of these different things, that are kind of put into a mixing pot really just influenced the art I’m creating, it’s not a deliberate attempt to create something that has already been done.
You caught the attention of Mark Pitts (Pres. of Urban Music, RCA Records and CEO of Bystorm Entertainment) which you signed you to his label Bystorm/RCA. How did you both meet?I was actually in New York; I was doing some background singing on Lil Wayne’s tour. A couple of producers that I was working with at the time played Mark a couple of my songs and he got it! He really appreciated the fact that I just wanted to make good dear honest music.
Your album is said to be like “listening to that inner voice that sways your judgment when you think you’re in love.” What were some of the experiences that you went through that led you to this concept?It probably wasn't one in generally; it’s really has just been life. Honestly I think “Something New” is perfect because it relates to things I have been dealing with over the course of the last year. Being in a relationship that you stay because of comfortability and familiarity. It’s not necessarily the best thing or the right thing for you. So just dealing with a lot of things we all think of during a relationship, like.. is this the one? Is this the right relationship? Should I leave this one and look for something better? Is this as good as it gets? Should I move on? Should I forgive? Just the things you deal with in a relationship. They are all drawn from personal experience that I've been going over during the course of writing the album.
Which track on your album resonates with you the most?There is a record called “Selfish” and it’s about how we give so much of ourselves, and not get the same thing in return. That will probably be one that’s dearest to my heart.
You have worked with artist like Slick Rick, Rico Love, Kevin Mccall and even had the opportunity to meet Stevie Wonder. How has working with them influenced your music?Each one in a different way, if you stay open you can learn from everything. Meeting Stevie was unreal it wasn't planned, being around him and his freedom to make different choices and sounds, the playfulness, it was so inspiring. Slick Rick was such a pioneer in rap the kind of things he chose to rap about. He made "story telling" an art. He wasn't afraid to be himself. He wasn't afraid to be a character.
Today the industry tends to be more focused on the artist looks rather than talent. How do you feel about breaking into an industry where female’s looks are sometimes put before their talent?Well you know it’s funny, I was just talking about two women who were groundbreaking--That I completely look up to--they really impacted not only the way I carry myself, but the boldness to be different regardless of what standards have already been set. Lucile Ball and Audrey Hepburn broke out completely comfortable with themselves-- I just want to encourage people to be comfortable being you.
You have written for artist like Chris Brown and the Pussycat Dolls, How do you get into the mindset of writing for such different artist?It’s interesting, a lot of times when I’m writing a movie will play out. Lyrically I’m describing the movie I see, so it’s about tapping into that story line and sharing it methodically and lyrically.
You were a background and demo singer for a while, how was the transition from that position to being a signed singer preparing the release of your debut album?
It’s been really interesting and exciting demoing songs and singing for other people, your helping them tell their story. So now working on my own album, my own project, it’s like now I finally get the opportunity to get my own musically glory, the world as Treasure sees it, love as Treasure sees it. So it’s an exciting opportunity and I’m glad it’s there.