Kreyolicious Artist Spotlight…in which…in which I present to you, dear kreyolicious cheries…to an artist you should know about. Today’s person of interest is a fifteen-year-old named Laureine Lilavois, a songbird based in Port-au-Prince. She tells me that she recorded her first song “The Same” (available on iTunes) at just 13. Amazing no? What’s more amazing is that on her song “The Same”, she displays all the vocal maturity you’d expect of someone of her age flipped—some 31-year old. File her under soft-core R&B with just, just a tinge of a world sound.
Let’s get to know her better dear kreyolicious cheries.
Kreyolicious—Tell us more about yourself.
I am currently in Secondaire Un—10th grade—and have done all my studies in the Haitian-French system. I love going to the beach and hanging out with my friends. I love to be myself—no matter how weird it may seem to others. Luckily, my friends are just as weird as me and we usually have a great time no matter what we are doing or where we are.
Kreyolicious: Whitney Houston or Mariah Carey?
No hesitation there: Whitney Houston. I choose her because she has a powerful voice—and above all—I feel the emotions rushing out through the words as she sings. She makes me feel the pain or joy she felt when she wrote or sang the song.
Kreyolicious: Do you drink lemon tea and honey to take care of your voice as some singers tend to do?
Yes. I especially use honey. It helps to clear up my vocal chords.
Kreyolicious: I read that you were born in the USA, and moved back to Haiti with your parents.
I moved to Haiti with my parents at the age of one. I grew up here. It’s my home. I travel to the States a few times a year for vacation and to visit family.
Kreyolicious: From your view of things, how is the musical scene in Haiti looking right now?
The music scene in Haiti now is awesome. We have our konpa, but we listen to all types of music here. We celebrate and encourage all genres of music in Haiti and have many festivals and parties allowing artists from around the world to showcase [themselves].
Kreyolicious: Will you be releasing an album soon? What do you have cooking musically?
For the moment, I am focusing on my studies. I have many songs written in their preliminary stages. When a topic comes to mind or something or someone inspires me, I write it down in my music journal. I have a few favorites and hope someday to complete them and share with the world.
Kreyolicious: How did you know that you had it in you—this singing thing?
My parents say I’ve been singing even before I could speak. [Laughter] I had my first onstage singing experience in Kindergarten. I’ve always loved singing, it’s just a part of me.
Kreyolicious: And what do your parents have to say about all of this? Are they like, “Laureine girl, as long as you become a nurse on the side, it’s perfectly okay if you pump up that microphone”?
My parents are my biggest supporters. They have encouraged me all along the way and I know they always will. Of course, like most parents, they want me to graduate from college—which I fully intend to do.
[All photos courtesy of BlowUp Records.]