FROM THE PRISON TO THE PEAK OF MUSIC SUCCESS – MISSUNDERTOOD757

FROM THE PRISON TO THE PEAK OF MUSIC SUCCESS – MISSUNDERTOOD757

December 25, 2018 1 By Ian Elroy Ogonji

She is strong at heart. The smiles that flashes across her visage camouflages the past that changed her life’s trail. In music is where she stores her untold anecdotes, where she turns missundertood to understood. In this segment, we get upclose with the songbird of virginia, Missundertood757.

DESCRIBE YOURSELF BRIEFLY

Missunderstood (757)- I am a neosoul / jazz/ r&b recording artist residing in the Hampton Roads Virginia area (Virginia, USA). I am also a million in nineteen things (licensed cosmetologist, Marketing Consultant, wife, and much more), but music is the key ingredient I needed to save my life. Missunderstood allows me to use my life stories as musical encouragement to the world that YOU CAN if you BELIEVE!

WHAT DOES THE NAME MISSUNDERSTOOD MEAN?

The name Missunderstood was given to me by my manager, Justin “Finesse” Lewis, who I met in 2010 upon my release from prison and happens to be my husband as well. Upon our meeting (via Facebook) we talked for months before an initial date. On that date I expressed my entire life to him… who I was, what I came from, my life in prison, being raped, being shunned, feeling unloved and supported, my background and more. After that talk he and I begin dating and he started calling me “Missunderstood”. He stated, and I now feel the same and walk in it every day, that upon people initially meeting me I appear standoffish, not personable, and a bit no pun intended misunderstood. Not knowing I am the most loveable, personable, helpful person you will ever meet, but that usually comes forward once they are introduced to my music… I’m just like every other human. Missunderstood until you gain an understanding through my music.

WHAT’S YOUR BIGGEST INSPIRATION/INFLUENCES IN SONGWRITING?

My biggest inspiration/influences in songwriting I would say is the fact that I am very cautious about the content I write about. Meaning I am serious about songs having substance (actually be talking about something that feeds the people in a positive way). I’m super serious about that when I write. I believe music moves souls, changes minds, and mends broken hearts, so content inspires everything.

HOW OFTEN DO YOU PRACTICE SINGING IN A WEEK?

I have tried so many times to NOT sing at all for one full day, and I’ve found for me that is absolutely impossible! I sing literally, EVERY SINGLE DAY, lol! I make it my business to take time out on a daily for my craft. I don’t work a standard job, and music & marketing is what I do on a day to day basis for income, so I make sure to practice every day.

WHICH IS YOUR FAVORITE SONG THAT YOU’VE EVER WRITTEN?

I love everything that I write, but if I had to absolutely choose, I’d say my favorite right now is Wind Blow. I had two in mind, but I’ll stick with her (and yes all my songs are him or hers lol). I say Wind Blow based on what is talking about. In the song I say, “Remember days when I thought life was over / there were days when I was nothing / so many late nights/ many failed tries / cold nights and there were lonely days/ that I’d wish that I could fly away/ I had to keep going/ Keep pushing because one day/ I wanna go where the wind blows and see where it takes me” . That song sums my journey to where I am now in a song. I was in prison, those were the dark days, came home and people couldn’t see past my past or give me a chance, so I decided to create my own path and use my experiences as my stepping stones to where I am and where I am headed, ya know.

WHICH SONG GAVE YOU A HARD TIME TO WRITE?

Wow, I haven’t even thought about this in some time, but its an old track off my last project (Awaken Faith) I released called NEVER KNEW A LOVE. This song took me 2 years to write. The hook was a breeze as well as the first verse, but the bridge and 2nd verse gave me hell (for two years).

DO YOU KNOW ANY SINGERS FROM AFRICA?

Of course, I love Akon and all he has done musically. I also am very fond of his business choices and moves. He gives back in a major way to his people and country.

HOW DID IT FEEL GETTING ARRESTED IN 2005?
At the time of my arrest I was a young 17, honestly it felt like nothing. That was a time in my life where I was already numb to the world in my mind. Living without any direction and only for the moments. Once sentenced to those years in prison I felt like… you’re either going to get it together now or never. I chose the NOW!

HOW IS IT BEING A WOMAN IN THE MUSIC INDUSTRY?

I have had several different experiences as a woman in the industry. In the beginning it was imperative that I established my seriousness in the industry when networking and building with those of the opposite sex. As a woman (an attractive one I’d like to think lol)… you sometimes run into the male counter-parts that try to prey on your beauty versus your business, but you have to stand your ground. My aura speaks business and miss me with the extra, so I rarely have any issues as a woman in this field.

WHERE DO YOUR WRITING INSPIRATION COME FROM?

I write on so many different topics that my inspiration can almost always come from anything! Most of my music is based on my real-life experiences I’ve gone through (prison, love, hurt, ups and downs and lessons I’ve learned). I use my songs as real diary entries most times. Some songs are also inspired by the interactions I have daily with friends and family as well.

HAVE YOU EVER HAD ANY CRAZY FAN ENOUNTERS?

Lol, the craziest experience was once when I opened with my band for Jussie Smollet (Jamal from the FOX TV Show Empire). I for some reason assumed the 30,000 people in the audience had no clue who I was, but I was truly mistaken when I walked near the gated VIP stage area and about 20 fans started grabbing my clothes yelling and screaming at the top of their lungs in excitement! I was blown away (almost literally) by the love. For some reason kids are always drawn to my music and when they finally met me, they are so shy in love… its beautiful but I’m a regular girl, ya know.

WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE EMOJI?

No one has ever asked me that, and I’ve never even thought of it. I guess the one I use the most could be considered my favourite… so I’d say my fave is the yellow heart or the sunflower. Both remind and feel like love to me and Im all love all the time. The sunflower is my grandmothers favourite flower and she just passed, but she was ALWAYS full of love, spunk, and joy no matter what was or wasn’t going on and that’s me in a nutshell.

HOW CAN PEOPLE ACCESS YOUR MUSIC?

My music is EVERYWHERE. Spotify, Youtube, Tidal, Itunes, AppleMusic, Pandora, SoundCloud, Amazon, GooglePlay, and more. I also have direct links to my Singles available on my website: http://www.IAMMISSUNDERSTOOD.com

WHAT ADVICE DO YOU HAVE FOR AN ASPIRING ARTIST?

My solid advice for an aspiring artist would be to never forget why you want to get your story, your words to the world. Meaning if you always have a purpose for why you must do and need music and need to get it out you will always have a drive to keep going. Even on the days it seems pointless, unobtainable, far-fetched, not supported! PUSH BABY, PUSH! Nothing worth birthing ever came forth without some excruciating pain AND pushing! – Missunderstood757.

FAVOURITE PARTY SHOT?

Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Honey

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