Singer-songwriter Ali B has been making quite the name for herself so far in 2017. She released her first single “Kiss Me Goodbye” earlier this year to much fanfare and praise, and has just released her newest song “Strangers in Love”. The New York City native is taking her classic NYC hustle to the music industry, which she hopes to break into and become the next big thing.
Ali B has headed out to Long Island to work at The Loft Sound Studio with former Making The Band star Donnie Klang & producer Matthew Laporte to expertly shape her craft of music. She considers it to be a blend of dance and pop, two genres that are quite popular in the industry today.
Ali B sat down with Manhattan Digest to discuss her booming career, why Selena Gomez and Ariana Grande are two of her biggest inspirations, her new single, and what’s next.
Was Ali B your first stage name choice or has that always been a nickname for you?
When I first started out doing open mics and performing I went by Alison Berke, it wasn’t until I released my first single “You’ll See It When It Hits You” that I decided that I wanted something different. My nickname growing up has always been Ali and I just felt that Ali B would be a good stage name to fit me as an artist and a person.
What inspired you to want to get involved in the music industry?
Growing up all I would do is listen to music. Hannah Montana was someone that in particularly inspired me because she taught me from the beginning that there is always a climb in anything that you do. After going to multiple concerts and watching artists like her sing and dance and put on these fantastic shows, I fell in love and looked at my dad and said, “I know what I want to do with my life.” Music has always been an outlet for me, it’s helped me overcome some of the hardest points in my life and that’s what I want my music to do for other people as well. Once I started performing and writing my own songs I was hooked and now I am extremely thankful to say that this now is my life and I can’t wait to see where it takes me.
I see that Selena Gomez and Ariana Grande are two of your favorite artists. Why them in particular?
Selena Gomez is someone I have idolized all my life growing up. She’s one of those people that is extremely humble and grateful for everything that she has in her life. I believe that it’s important for an artist to have that because everyone starts somewhere and sometimes you lose sight of that.
Ariana Grande is another artist who is also humble and who’s voice is just incredible. Both Ariana and Selena inspire me every day to follow my dream. The way that their music makes me feel and the connection is what I hope that I can achieve one day. Sharing my music with others, whether it helps them get over something in their life or even if they’re just having a bad day, is something I hope to achieve.
How would you describe your overall sound?
My sound is definitely in the direction of pop, however, my voice is very dynamic in allowing me to put extra emotion into my songs whether it’s belting out a note or doing some runs throughout it. My sound comes from the lyrics and the message of the song, having written all my own lyrics I think it’s extremely important for the sound of my music to fit the story I’m telling throughout the song.
Tell us about your new single “Strangers in Love” and how it came about?
“Strangers in Love” was one of the first songs that I’ve ever written. It brought me back to a point in my life where I was genuinely happy and in love. The song is about feeling that connection that you’ve been waiting for with someone, and sometimes you may not realize it right away but you just know inside that you love them and, hey, everyone starts out as strangers! It’s a really upbeat feel good song that you can throw on in the car just to have some fun and jam out! I’m super excited about all the feedback I’ve been getting from the song and can’t wait to release the music video!
You grew up in New York City so I have to ask… favorite place to eat?
That’s such a hard question, there are so many amazing food places in NYC. However, I always enjoy a trip down to Serendipity 3 or the Sugar Factory!
What are your ultimate hopes for the rest of this year and beyond?
As this year comes to a close, I begin to look back on all the growth and accomplishments I’ve made this year and am so grateful for all of these opportunities. I am on the path where I continue to grow more as an artist and a person every day. I chased this dream with the passion of spreading my music, and sharing that connection with everyone around me, and that’s what I plan on pursuing for a very long time!
For more information on Ali B, please check out her official website.