Sound Check: Vivian Green

“I’m on an emotional rollercoaster/Loving you ain’t nothing healthy/Loving you was never good for me.” Some songs you just never forget. Such is the case with “Emotional Rollercoaster,” from Vivian Green’s 2002 debut album A Love Story. Since then, the singer has released other albums (2005‘s Vivian and 2010’s Beautiful),  with equally high-imapct lyrics and the same powerhouse vocals that we were introduced to in 2002. The singer is back with her latest, Green Room. sat down with the singer to talk about her new release. What’s the inspiration behind this album?

Vivian Green:  My life is always the inspiration behind my music, so I have continued that with this album. Now that I’m older and a bit wiser, I see things differently, so the tone of the album is very different than the first two. There is no angry songwriting this time around. The Green Room absolutely has a musical focus because I knew I needed to make the kind of music my fans want and expect to hear. Who’s producing this project?  Any interesting collaborations?

Vivian Green: The album is produced by Vidal Davis, Adam Blackstone, Phoe Notes, Steve McKie and Jason Farmer. I’ve worked with them all before and they all are friends of mine. Collaborations are with Freeway, Algebra Blessett, and Brian Culbertson. Which songs are especially important from this album?

Vivian Green: “Light the Universe” (produced my Adam Blackstone) stands out to me because it taps into the fears we all have that we’re not smart enough, good enough, special enough, etc. Some of us aren’t sure of our purpose. This song I feel will make you want to at least figure out your purpose and even further encourage you to see it through. It was written by myself and my sister-friend Algebra Blessett. What’s the songwriting process for you, when you set out to record an album?

Vivian Green: Songs come all kinds of ways. They can start as words, melody, track, and piano chords. I don’t have one way that I do it. However this time was a bit different because I worked with some great songwriters on 2 of the tracks. “Anything Out There” and “Not Prepared to Miss You” are written buy Guordan Banks and Jessica Reedy. Who would you say is the Vivian Green audience?

Vivian Green: I never thought about that until this album actually. My audience is mostly composed of African American adults. I think they always approve of my stories and the emotions in them, but they don’t like it when my sound drifts in other directions than what they’re used to. As a creative person it’s difficult because I write lots of different kinds of records and I love many other genres as well, but I have to stay in my [music business] lane and that’s okay.

The Green Room is out in stores now. Follow Vivian Green on Twitter @iamviviangreen.

 –James R. Sanders

James R. Sanders is a freelance writer, social media consultant, and fashion stylist based in New York. His work appears across many publications in print and online platforms. He obsesses over social media and is finally finishing up his first novel about vaudeville and revenge set in the 20s. Check out his fashion  blog

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