ReWind Takes You Back to A Release & The Artist and/or People Involved with The Project Speak about it.
1995 was a great year in the world of R&B music, Michael Jackson released “HIStory: Past, Present And Future,” Jodeci dropped their third album “The Show, The After Party, The Hotel,” R. Kelly hit us with his self-titled album and that year Faith Evans, Monica, D’Angelo, Deborah Cox & Jon B. all released their debut albums. Another new artist at that time dropped her debut album as well, Adina Howard.
“Do You Wanna Ride” was released in February of the year, preceded by the mega-hit single “Freak Like Me.” The platinum single went #1 on the R&B charts and #2 on Billboards Hot 100. The sexually charged track was different from the norm than what other R&B female artists were doing and created a lane for Adina to have all to herself.
The album’s next singles “My Up And Down” and “It’s All About You” failed to make a mark commercially as “Freak Like Me” did. However the album went platinum and was considered by many to be one of the best R&B albums released that year.
We spoke with Adina about the release and got her feedback on the success of “Freak Like Me” and “Do You Wanna Ride,” her thoughts on why the follow-up singles didn’t do as well as the lead and Adina tells us about the first time she ever heard herself on the radio.
UrbanBridgez.com Take us back to Freak Like Me, do you have any early memories of hearing your music on the radio for the first time?
Adina Howard: I do, I remember hearing Freak Like Me for the first time when I was driving down Sunset Blvd. I was listening to the radio and I remember hearing the song and was like this song sounds familiar. And I was like Ayyy, wait (Screams)! This is my song (laughs)! Then I had to quickly pump my breaks because when the song was over I realized it was their make it or break it portion. Then I was like, oh. It’s what do they think about the song? But most of the callers were like this is different, we’ll see if the label promotes and pushes it. So that was basically about it.
UrbanBridgez.com That’s kind of cool also for you to hear your first single ever on the radio and it be a rush it or flush it type of situation, so you can really get opinions.
Adina Howard: Exactly, I was like please don’t flush it (laughs).
UrbanBridgez.com That album has so many gems on it, was there any songs on the album you wished were released?
Adina Howard: Oh man, let’s see. I haven’t listened to that album in forever.
Adina Howard: Yeah I don’t listen to my music like that. That’s the one thing I don’t do. I’ll listen to it over and over again when I’m in the midst of recording it. Then pretty much when it’s done so I can critique myself & the music. Then I get really strange because when I record a new song for the project then the one I liked before I’m like I don’t like that one anymore, I like this one better. So I’m weird like that (laughs). I don’t find myself listening to my music much because I don’t record my music for me. So I don’t really get a whole lot out of it.
UrbanBridgez.com Well my favorite was Baby Come Over, that should of been a single.
Adina Howard: Really? Wow, okay. Thank you! You know what with that album I don’t know what happened. What’s so interesting is labels tend to have the tendency to think they know what the public wants to hear. So they release what they want to release. Instead of taking the opinion of the public, but I guess if they did that they would be all over the place because not everybody agrees. So they decide to push this one and that one. And the ones that they did was at the time absolutely fine by me. Because they pushed the provocative music. But when they selected the singles they didn’t follow through with the promotion and marketing of it like they did with Freak Like Me. Sometimes what labels do is when they feel they achieved the success off the first single, they think that’s all you need and don’t need the support. So they can kind of just throw stuff at the wall and hope it sticks. So when you fall, then they’re looking at you like you can’t sell anymore. And it’s like no you’re not doing what you did before, don’t be trying to blame that on me shoot. I got the gift, you got the money (both laugh).
UrbanBridgez.com Do You Wanna Ride dropped in 95, what was better about the music industry, compared to how it is now?
Adina Howard: I couldn’t even tell you, honestly I couldn’t because it’s all the same to me at this point. The difference between then and now is the technology. I learned my lesson because I use to say independent labels are more compact and they’ll be able to focus on you more & push your project. Only to realize they’re not as good because they do not have the machine like the major has. All of their contacts and what not, they’re ineffective. So at the end of the day you need a label that supports you 100%, has the contacts, has the financial backing that’s needed for the pay to play. Because if you don’t have the money to pay these radio stations to play your music you can forget about it. Again I love technology, to a certain degree today because it’s a blessing and a curse. But internet radio and satellite radio are good, but they will never add up to what traditional radio is. Because not everybody can afford satellite radio and on top of that you have so many got darn stations and when it comes to internet radio again it’s so many of them & just anybody can put a internet radio station together. So it’s not like it’s a huge catalyst for artist like that.
UrbanBridgez.com Yeah, because spins can’t be tracked that way.
Adina Howard: Exactly!
UrbanBridgez.com From that album what was the best part about the success and what was the worst part?
Adina Howard: The best part about being successful with that album was being able to travel to certain parts of the world that I would have never seen if I hadn’t had that opportunity. The worst part and I really won’t say it was the worst part but the challenging part about that project was not getting paid for it. I’ve never seen a royalty check, everybody else got paid and is still getting paid off of me. I don’t know where my money is till this day because they hid it so well. But it’s cool…
UrbanBridgez.com Wow, Karma, Karma will come to them all.
Adina Howard: Man! She’s a beast and she don’t play!
Check back next week to UrbanBridgez.com for Our New Interview with Adina Howard as she tells us about her up-coming new album, her thoughts on her Life After episode, touring overseas compared to the states, her acting career and much more!