Underground Interview With Nico Ward
As a child Nico drew inspiration from her stepfather, a DJ, whose labor of passion exposed her to a wide variance of music. At 5 years of age, Nico Ward began performing in front of live audiences. By the age of 15, Nico was adept at penning songs illuminating her life experiences. She drew inspiration from deep spiritual roots, and a pool of acquired and lost love, teen angst, and the political uprisings in her immediate surroundings.
Some of Nico ‘s influences are Whitney Houston, Prince, Beyonce, Rhianna, Janet Jackson, Guns-N-Roses, Jill Scott, Missy Elliot, Bob Marley, Bonnie Raitt, Deftones, Ella Fitzgerald, Lauryn Hill and many more.
In 2010 Nico enlisted into the military and served 4 years during the war in Afghanistan. In 2013 Nico started JHGMG (JUPITER HOUSE GLOBAL MEDIA GROUP) with a vision of receiving global brand recognition. Nico continues to pen songs that tell the story of her life. Today she resides in Maricopa Arizona with her family where she continues to help inspire others through public service and her music.
Websites or Social Media Pages:
Tik Tok: www.tiktok.com/@nicowardmusic
What Musical Genre Do You Feel Best Describes Your Music And How Would You Describe Your Sound?
I have a connection to many genres of music. However, I grew up on Gospel and ventured on from there into R&B, Soul, Hip-hop, Pop, Rock and Trap.
How Did You Get Your Name? Is There A Story?
I don’t really have much of a story there. My middle name is Nicole, so I go by Nico for short.
What Are or Have Been Your Musical Influences?
When I think about my musical influences something in me lights up. I mean, I have so many of them that stretch genres and decades. Prince was my favorite artist as a child. He was different and he was beyond his time. Sign of the Time, When Doves Cry and Purple Rain where some of my favorite songs by Prince. Janet Jackson, Ooh I loved the way she danced. When she broke out with the control album, I was like yea, I wanna be in control too! When she released Let’s wait awhile, it came at a good time in my life when I was wrestling with the pressures of abstinence and doing it! When I was all grown up, Janet was there again with Velvet Rope! Toni Braxton, got me through my heart breaks along with Fantasia, Maxwell, Micheal Jackson, Beyoncé, Rascal Flatts, Florida Georgia Line, Guns N Roses, Creed, Anita Baker, Breaking Benjamin, Deftones, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Siri Dyal Band, Whitney Houston, Luther Vandross. I have so many musical influences. I’m sure the world will hear them in my different styles. It’s my way of honoring them.
What Are You Working On Now? Any Future Collaborations We Can Look Forward To?
Right now I’m working on a few singles while I continue crafting for my album. As far as collaborations go, I get asked about collaborations a lot from people in and outside of the US. I’m interested but I believe that timing is important and energy is everything. I have to feel tuned to a situation and to people to work with them. When it’s all said and done my music is what I leave behind for the world to feed on. I want to make sure it’s the type of music that people keep coming back to for generations.
What Is Your Ultimate Goal In The Music Industry? What Is Your Plan Of Action?
My ultimate goal is to help the world see what I see in myself and that is that I am one of the best in the entertainment industry. My plan right now is to keep writing and creating music with great quality that reflects the spectrum of life. I’m going to keep connecting with music lovers all around the world like I’ve consistently done for years. I believe that making those connections will eventually convert to business relationships, friendships and fans. I guess my thought on it is this. There are two different circles in the industry. There is the circle of Artist who only care about the art. Those are typically the newcomers. They don’t understand that there is a business to it. In this circle Artist are less concerned about the numbers and more concerned about sharing what’s meaningful to them. I mean they really paint the scenery through music. The other circle is making the type of music that the masses feed on but can also be a little more confining when you’re attempting to only create for your audience. Finding away to express myself but in away that the masses will digest without falling into the loop is the challenge.
What Is Your Favorite Track To Perform Live and Why?
Trigga is my favorite song to perform live because it has a different feel than the recorded version. When I perform it live you can the different genres threaded through the live performance. It’s a mixology of rock undertones with a hip hop cadence and rock/soul and R&B vocals. I love it. It’s very energetic and different.
What Has Been The Biggest Challenge In Your Career Thus Far?
The biggest challenge was maneuvering the business. I mean really learning it. I learned a lot of what not to do first. Lol. It cost me a lot financially. I had a period of time when I had to step back out the game for some years because sharks and scammers are up my resources. They would promise this and that but wouldn’t come through on their word. I had some hard lessons but I’m thankful I had them earlier on. I’ve since then been able to recover. I never stopped making the connections over the years and helping other artist bypass some of my big pitfalls. When I looked up my network had expanded and people who where grinding too way back when are now among the movers and shakers in the business.
What’s Your Typical Songwriting Process?
For me it drops in different ways. Sometimes it starts with a melody that won’t leave me alone. Other times a hook will keep looping in my energy until I put it down. How I absolutely know that I’m supposed to write a song is when the words and melody fall in all at once. When that happens I’m usually awaken in the middle of the night and the song will pour out like a waterfall.
How Has Social Media Influenced Your Career As An Artist?
I think social media has helped me to experience my fan base in a mutual way. It certainly helped me to open up. I am so private. I would go as far as to say that I’m shy but no one would believe me. Lol. I came up in an era of music where you had to protect your privacy. It kept a bit of mystery around the Artist and added to their superstardom like Michael Jackson or our currently shrouded Kanye and Kim Kim Kardashians.
What Are Some Tracks and Artists Currently On Your Playlist?
Nico Ward, Kanye, Drake, Lizzio, Bree Runway, Kevin Gates, Aleska Safia, Yung Bleu, Tom McDonald, Yinks, DJ Khaled and BIA to name a few.What Did You Do Before You Started Making Music?:I went to middle school. Lol. Seriously. I started recording professionally at the age of 12 on a gospel music project. I’ve been creating music ever since.
Any Advice For Young People (Men or Women) That Want To Succeed In The Music World?
Learn the business. That’s my first advice. Don’t be afraid to mess up. Just do it as fast as possible. That’s how you learn. Bet on yourself and then invest in yourself and don’t quit. You promised yourself you’d make it. You promised yourself you’d be big one day. Keep your promise to yourself.
What Would You Change In The Music Industry If You Were A Top Music Executive?
Great question. The first thing I would do is change how the Major music charts are regulated. It should never be that artist make great music and have crazy fan support with proven numbers but but Major Labels are able to just buy their way to number 1 spots on any charts when clearly the numbers don’t support those wins. That would definitely change. I believe it’s an unfair practice and needs to be changed. Another thing is that I believe that Independent artist need their own award shows. It takes a lot of grit to be an independent artist and self supported. You honestly have to work 3 to 4 times harder than a Major Artist to get the same exposure just because of money. That would change.
How Do You Feel About Originality?
Originality is important. It is how new waves of sound are created and eventually turned into new genres if they stick around long enough.
Is There Anything Else We Should Know About You Or That You Would Like to Add?
Yes! Please continue to Support my single TRIGGA and look for my next single Poundcake. Not only are you supporting an independent artist, you also help me open doors for other artist around the world. You can find my music across all Major platforms. When in doubt l, Google me Nico Ward/ Jupiter House Global Media or Nico Ward LLC. I’m here! Thank you college underground radio for the opportunity!
~ Always Blessings~