R&B singer Vedo credits daughter’s “unconditional love” for pulling her out of a dark place after her mother’s death


As one of the game’s most underrated R&B artists, Vedo has displayed talent and tenacity since his debut EP 93 in 2015. The artist, born in Benton Harbor, Mich., Residing in Atlanta, shamelessly brings back soulful R&B music with a contemporary flair. flair we didn’t know we needed. And his most recent studio album, 1320, Vedo delivered nothing less.

The album title marks two important moments in Vedo’s life. In 2013, he lost his mother to lung cancer, who he told ESSENCE to be “the lowest I have been in my life.” Seven years later, in 2020, Vedo’s daughter Kayden was born, which he said helped him ‘get out of that dark place’.

Speaking about the years after his mother’s death, he said: “I really didn’t care. I was lost, gloomy, scared, marked. It was all of the above. All the while I’m still in love with music, but it’s hard to love something when you’re going through something so tragic.

The birth of her now one-year-old daughter has helped ease some of that pain. “I still felt a little bit of PTSD from this traumatic event that happened, but the fact that she kind of lifted that burden,” he shared. “I felt needed; I felt loved, unconditional love.

Explaining the sentiment, Vedo added, “You don’t really know unconditional love until you have a little one. They love you no matter what, “he said of his love for Kayden. Her inspiration came from a fusion of experiences throughout the seven year span and crowned her of a cherry with the birth of his daughter. While some fans wonder why he might not have a dedicated Kayden song on the current album, Vedo explained that the inspiration is found throughout the album. project and not just in one track. “Don’t get me wrong. She was [the] the inspiration to get excited again, to put the soul back in the music. She was the inspiration to love music as I love music above all else.

Like most working fathers, balancing fatherhood with a successful career isn’t an easy thing to do. “You just gotta get there, man,” Vedo said with stress but pride. He tries to pretend he’s gone because he loves his daughter and only wants to give her the best. “I’m on the road because I love you and I want you to miss nothing, okay?” I can’t be here all the time because then I won’t be able to provide for you. I will not be able to work, ”explained the singer. He maintains open and honest communication with his manager about his tour schedule, whether it’s doing shows all month or taking two weeks to spend time with his family.

Vedo admits he has to see his daughter at least once before a performance or else he doesn’t “do the same”, either via FaceTime or in real life. Balance is of the utmost importance to the “Add To You” singer and to him, there is no excuse, rhyme or reason why he cannot take the time to be in his life. small. “No matter how hard your job is, how hard your job is, you have to make a habit of being part of its development. [and] his education. You have to do it or it is unacceptable, ”he told ESSENCE with passion. “That’s why I never really understood why people agree not to be in their child’s life.”

For her fifth studio album, Vedo spared no collaboration and included names such as Jacquees, Eric Bellinger, Lloyd and Erica Banks. “I had heard that Lloyd was kind of taking a break from music, so for him to even consider doing this album with me was monumental,” Vedo said enthusiastically. Although all his songs on 1320 means the world to him, Vedo told ESSENCE about his favorite collaborations throughout the studio album, including “Juicy” with Ari Lennox. “It wasn’t meant to be my song. I actually wrote it for his album, but it ended up being a cut on my album, ”he revealed. While speaking with his producer Jay White, he encouraged Vedo to keep the record and called Ari herself for an “executive play”.

The “Pressure” frontman, who Vedo described as “super sweet,” was cool with the idea of ​​transferring ownership and was even happy to drop a verse on the song. Unbeknownst to him, Lennox had heard “You Got It” before and was a fan of Vedo’s music. “She was already a fan of the record and a fan of the music, which I didn’t know. I had no idea because when I walk in and write for people I don’t really like to measure what I did [or] what that person did. We’re here for one reason only, it’s to make a song, ”he said humbly.

Speaking of songs, with Vedo’s viral hit “You Got It” from his fourth album For you becoming RIAA Platinum certified just a few months after receiving RIAA Gold certification, the song’s emotional and lyrical impact does not go unnoticed. While recording in his home studio, Vedo wanted to enter this song as if it was a conversation with the women listening to his music. Instead of speaking to women in a hypersexualized tone or speaking directly about women to his male audience, he wanted to turn the story around and challenge his female listeners to take back their power.

It’s time to work
Fix your credit, girl go ahead
Raise your bag
Hit that gym and come back alright
Go get that degree, go girl

“I felt like no R&B artist – or artist at all – really had this motivating conversation with women. You always see men talking to young men who have just started a business. You never see someone really take the time to say, ‘Hey honey, listen, go back to school, get that degree, boss. Hey, start your business. You don’t hear a man say that every day. If they say so, it’s in camera. They don’t want to say it in public, ”Vedo explained. “I want to see you all win. “

In an effort to show women that he is not just a supporter but an ally of black women’s ownership and empowerment, Vedo didn’t spare the lyrical stem when it came to saying to his listeners what they needed to hear. “It hits differently when it comes from a man. I just felt like you weren’t getting enough flowers. It’s time to get to work. I’ve been waiting too long, “he said.” In the end, I just have to say what it is. I’m not going to beat around the bush.

SUBJECTS: ari lennox black music jacquees lloyd vedo