Shanell Interview With Amaru Don TV

March 6, 2011 by Danny M

Interviews

Shanell Interview With Amaru Don TV

Amaru Don TV caught up with Shanell when she was in the UK recently to speak on her upcoming mixtape titled Nobody’s Bitch, Lil Wayne and his Tha Carter IV album, UK singer Jessie J, her style, songwriting, and plenty more. You can read the interview after the jump:

Ms Shanell aka SnL, please introduce yourself?

Shanell: I am Shanell aka SnL. Young Money’s best kept secret.

That’s not necessarily true. Your Mixtape ‘Shut up and Listen’ got a lot of downloads (2million) so you’re not that much of secret anymore.

Shanell: I guess not. Every secret has to be told at some point.

Your style/sound is very varied; how would you describe it?

Shanell: My sound is the makeup of my musical experience. I listen to a lot. I wasn’t that person that listened to one genre of music, I listen to pop, rap, jazz, rock. People think it’s something I’m creating on purpose but it just happens that way; it’s just whatever comes in to my head. It’s a fusion of music.

How did you get involved in song writing?

Shanell: I was in musical theatre before any mainstream music. I was on a tour – a musical theatre tour – and the choreographer was choreographing for a group signed to Left Eye’s label. When the musical theatre tour was over, he brought me into the whole mainstream world and then I was working with different groups writing. That’s when I realised ‘hey I got a dope pen, my pen game is on point’. Bangledesh was somebody I knew pre-Ludacris days. We’ve been friends forever and so when I would come off the road I would go work with him in the studio and we developed this chemistry. Bangledesh pulled me in on projects with Usher. Then I created my own lane as a writer and started booking my own sessions and writing for other peoples tracks. It made me feel that I can write my own music for myself. I was demoing every song I wrote and the demos were so good, it was like ‘who could sing them better?’ There was no one who could sing these songs better. When I was dancing on the road for NeYo, I was playing my stuff for everybody and Wayne happened to be one of the people I played it for. He was like ‘are you selling these songs or are you keeping them for yourself?’ and at that time I was on the fence. He was like ‘keep these songs for yourself and come sign to Young Money’.

Prior to that, you turned down some record deals?

Shanell: Yeah. I look at myself as a true artist and a lot of times these record labels try to make you into something you’re not or make you the imitation of whoever is popping at that time. I couldn’t do it. They were trying to cut out parts of me, like ‘just do r’n’b. You’re a black girl, you should do r’n’b. I don’t just do r’n’b, I do a lot so I didn’t feel comfortable signing. Wayne is not afraid to do what he feels and loves and that’s what he encourages in all of the artists that are signed to Young Money. His thing is, he tries to pull the best out of us but it’s always us.

Tell me about your new upcoming Mixtape ‘Nobody’s Bitch’?

Shanell: My upcoming Mixtape is called ‘Nobody’s Bitch’. People think because I sing, I’m 4ft 11 and a girl, I’m a pushover. ‘Nobody’s Bitch’ is the more aggressive side of Shanell. It’s aggressive but it’s still fun. I’m not a mean person, I like to have fun but at the same time I’m nobody’s bitch.

Do you feel women are pushed in a corner to be over sexualised in music?

Shanell: Yeah. That’s been a problem forever. I don’t really participate in that. I think that’s my statement for girls and for women in my music. I have something called the Girls Club. It’s me and a couple of artists, choreographers and women that are professionals in whatever they do. Trying to build women’s self esteem and confidence levels back up. It’s okay be sexy but it’s okay to not be. It’s okay to be smart, it’s okay to make mistakes. We’re building women’s confidence levels back up so they don’t think that the only thing people are going to pay attention is your bra size and how big your butt looks.

I would like to get an exclusive out of you … have you heard the Carter 4 yet?

Shanell: I’ve heard bits and pieces of it. I don’t know exactly what it’s going to be. Wayne is a monster. I don’t know what it’s going to be…it’s going to be dope.

I’m sure you’ve written on it though?

Shanell: We’ve worked on a few things. Out of three or four songs he has probably 20 times that. I hope I make the cut.

I have segment called DEEPEST LYRICS. So what is the deepest lyric/song you have written to date?

Shanell: There’s a song on my album that has a back story that’s out of this world. (laughs) I’m not going to tell you what song it is.

Come on Shanell…

Shanell: It might not go on the album, I’m not sure. I think it will because it’s so emotional. It’s probably one of the songs that I can say is strictly about my life. Usually when I write I take a dream I had or maybe a story from a friend of mine, or a part of my life and fuse it with some other story. I’ll tell you the name of it. It’s called ‘Hate The City’. Maybe when the album comes out and that song is on there we can do an interview and I’ll tell you the whole story.

In the UK who is Shanell currently listening to?

Shanell: You guys have an artist over there that I’m dying to do a collab with. Her name is Jessie J. She to me is that representation of a female who touches all sides of women. She’s a woman, she has beautiful voice, and she has a hard edge almost like ‘don’t mess with me, but I’m still sweet’. If you guys love her, you guys will marry me (laughs).

Where you are today is not just an overnight thing. What advice do you have for upcoming songwriters/artist?

Shanell: I would say the internet has done a lot for signed artists and unsigned artists. If they create a consistent means of allowing people to hear good music like a blog or website and feature new work once a week. That’s actually how with this ‘Nobody’s Bitch’ mixtape, I found two of the producers that people suggested online. The main thing is, it has to be good.

What’s the best piece of advice that Wayne has given you?

Shanell: He’ll just say ‘Do what you do, do what you do, find it’. When you leave somebody to have to figure it out, they end up depending on themselves and they’re not looking for someone to create them and it makes them find it. There’s never been any real ‘sit down let me advise you’ type of situation.

With Drake and Nicki’s success, do you feel the pressure?

Shanell: The only person opinion I really care about is Wayne. He actually gave me the opportunity to do this. When people try to screw me or people who tried to make me be something else or people who just said no and shut the door in my face, he opened the door and said ‘do you, do what you need’. I want to make sure he feels like he made the right decision. I hope my fans will be satisfied with the music to enjoy cry to and laugh to, but you know, if he didn’t give me that opportunity I wouldn’t even have the fan to give music to.

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11 Responses to “Shanell Interview With Amaru Don TV”

  1. The world Says:

    Does shanell not know hate this city was leaked ages back?

    Reply

  2. WeezyFan Says:

    it hasn’t leaked ^ she just performed it live, and I can’t wait for her mixtape & her album she’s so amazing

    Reply

  3. ayoooo Says:

    man i hate that she didnt say nothing bout c4 on how it sounding..fuck!!

    Reply

  4. bknyhustle Says:

    imo i think she shouldve been featured in drake’s and nicki’s album and wayne has to introduce to his bigger projects and whatnot. i just kinda feel like they really sleepin on her talent whiles they busy running around searching for what they already have in store… i guess at times too damn closeness is blindness to the eye but for this lady deserves moment too, its really been a minute tbh…wayne do some’ng ma nigga wtf tho!

    Reply

  5. bknyhustle Says:

    imo i think she shouldve been featured in drake’s and nicki’s album altogether and wayne has to constantly introduce her to his bigger projects and whatnot, maybe that way she can starts getting artistry recognition n bigger features. i just kinda feel like they really sleepin on her talent whiles they busy running around searching for what they already have in store… i guess at times too damn closeness is blindness to the eye but for this lady she def deserves her moment aswel, its really been a minute tbh…wayne do some’ng ma nigga wtf tho!

    fixed.

    Reply

  6. The world Says:

    It has, i have the cd quality version 🙂

    Reply

  7. lilweezyfan1 Says:

    nice interview 🙂

    Reply

  8. ricardo laguna Says:

    I love shanell <3

    Reply

  9. freshkid Says:

    nice one shannel we all love ya

    Reply

  10. ashley Says:

    dang that sucker huge!

    Reply

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