By Amanda Fields
Aspiring musical artists have to connect with their audience and constantly strengthen that connection.
That’s the advice offered by musician Kofi Black, who performed recently at “The Soul Food R&Beef Sing Off” at The Lincoln University’s Ware Center Theatre.
“Learn them, relate to them and then perform it,” Black told The Lincolnian after the performance. “Music is not just about you; it is about how you touch people.
“Oh, make sure you have a lot of fun,” Black added. “This is a major ingredient.”
Students said they enjoyed the show.
“I enjoyed his covers and even his single ‘Superman,'” senior Devin Coutreyer said. “He definitely is an artist to listen to when you are with your lady.”
Black, a native of Staten Island, N.Y., said he is influenced by Donny Hathaway, Marvin Gay, Sting, R. Kelly and others.
“College tours are the best because it is so organic,” Black said. “They’ll let you know if you’re ‘turnt up’ or not.”
The Lincolnian asked Black about his life, his music and his aspirations.
What got you started?
“My parents were into music heavy. My mom from Brooklyn, who’s now a preacher, had me in the choir, of course, and listening to old school records. My dad from Ghana, West Africa, was a music producer. Also, my uncle Ray, who’s one of my many influences, was linked with Motown in their golden era.”
What/who motivates you?
“My motivation has changed since I’m a father now. I want to look in my daughter’s eyes and tell her ‘Go for your dreams. You can be anything you want to be’ and mean it because I will be her example. Also for everybody who said no, like certain record labels, American Idol, X-Factor, The Voice, and I went all the way to Hollywood. That definitely motivated me. They never said I wasn’t good enough; they just said not today, so I took the good out of that. They all know my day is coming, and I can accept that.”
What does a day in the life of Kofi Black consist of?
“Well, I wake up every day at 4 a.m. to do push-ups, run a few miles, shower then cook me a banging breakfast. I run my own production company. I’m an engineer, songwriter, producer and vocal coach so I’ll be in a studio session. During the day I’ll make time to do some homework with my daughter and then head out to network, go to an open mic to sing, or maybe even a date.”
Who is your target audience?
“My target audience is everybody. I want to make timeless music. I make music everyone can enjoy. I have fun songs, songs that will make you cry, think about your situation, inspire, set the mood to make love, showcase my vocal ability, etc.”
Hear Kofi Black’s mix tape “LoveSICK.” Follow him on Twitter and Instagram @KOFIBLACKMUSIC.