Several music icons have come from Long Island. Mariah Carey, Busta Rhymes, LL Cool J. 16-year-old Vaeda Black, who comes from the North Shore (an area I am all too familiar with) could be next on that list given how incredible her indie-pop and alternative sound is that resonates so well with what’s going on in the music industry today.
Music for Vaeda seems to run in her blood, as she’s currently a senior at the acclaimed Long Island High School for the Arts. Her voice has a very Adele-like quality to it in that you get the soulfulness that comes out of each word she sings, notably on her 2017 hit “Face Down.”
October happens to be an exciting time for her, as she is releasing a new song called “Suicide Love” on Wednesday and is performing at Arlene’s Grocery tonight. Prior to all of that happening, she sat down with me to discuss her booming career so far, her new song and her biggest goals moving forward.
You were raised in my hometown of Centerport… hay! Did you like growing up there?
Growing up In Centerport was a blast! When I first moved here from Commack I went to the summer camp that’s run in my community called HBCA Summer Rec. I have to say it really changed my life. I met all of my best friends there.
How did you come up with your stage name Vaeda Black?
The name Vaeda actually came from the movie My Girl… the main characters name is Vada which I thought was a cool name so I just changed the spelling. Black just flowed with the name.
For those who are unaware of you, how would you describe your sound and who influenced it the most?
My sound is alternative pop… I think my music has been influenced by everything i listen to. I have a very wide taste in music.
Were you surprised at all the critical acclaim you got for your release of “Face Down”?
Yes! I was nervous putting out my first song and I wasn’t sure about the kind of feedback it was going to get since it’s not a very commercial song. When I started getting positive feedback I was more than pleased.
You have a brand-new song out, “Suicide Love.” What’s it about?
“Suicide Love” is about being so overcome with desire for someone that you can do nothing but give yourself into them. It’s also a representation of how easy it is to get lost in that feeling. In a way, this wanting of a person is something to fear. In the line “what is this madness, I say” it represents the disoriented state that is sometimes experienced when you’re lost in your feelings. Completely submitting to another person is a complex experience… being vulnerable is hard for a lot of people, but I want this song to represent the good things that come from showing yourself to another person and letting them love you.
Are your hopes to get out of Long Island at some point and move to NYC or LA?
Yes! It’s actually my dream to live in the city.
What are your biggest career goals?
My biggest goal as an artist as of now is to go on a world tour and to have a dedicated fan base! I want to share my music with as many people who will listen… music is a way for people to connect with one another, so I guess I just want people to connect over my music.