Interview: Tyrese a.k.a Black Ty a.k.a Roman Pierce

Authentic is the first word that comes to mind when speaking of Tyrese.  Which is kind of odd because as an actor he is by definition someone who pretends to be someone else,which is the antithesis of authentic. But as an R&B singer/rapper and motivational speaker he deals in hard truths and delivers them unapologetically. Whether it’s in the latest installment of the high octane, box office hit Fast & Furious 7, in which he reprises his role as the fast talking, faster driving Roman Pierce or in his latest video C-walking with Snoop Dogg while lamenting about all of the “Dumb Shit” he’s done in various relationships, Tyrese manages to stay true to himself and walk that fine line between giving his audience what they want and giving them what they need.


Tyrese feat. Snoop Dogg “DUMB SHIT” Official Music Video from Voltron Filmz on Vimeo.

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2LOUD: Your first video release “Dumb Shit” seems to be an extension of your advice videos from Facebook and Instagram. So what advice would the Tyrese from those videos give to the Tyrese singing and rapping about all the “dumb shit” he’s done?

Tyrese: the advice would be to be transparent, be honest, even if you’re embarrassing yourself in the things that you’re confessing, just be real with it. Here’s the thing, this is fckn crazy, I don’t know when and why this is cool but everybody is working hard to show you how unaffected they are. “I don’t need you, I got my own money…..I’m this, I’m that .” Everyone wants to sell you on how much they don’t need you, and how much they’re not depending on you and saying all of this corny and egotistical shit. And in my mind I said you know what, I’m just going to be honest. And I’m going to say as smart as I am, I’m human, I’m flawed. Sometimes I be doing dumb shit, I make mistakes and women can relate to it, men can relate to it. And naturally when you hear about people doing dumb shit, you always want to connect it to cheating but all marriages and relationships that end are not connected to cheating. And all men don’t cheat. Sometimes us men and women have a lot of unresolved issues, a lot of baggage from previous relationships, some insecurities and anxieties and the question becomes everyone has luggage but who’s willing to love you enough to help you unpack?

2LOUD: Your new album, Black Rose, promises to be a multi-media extravaganza with music videos, a short film, a global tour, and a book. With the ever changing landscape in the music industry and social media do you feel artists need to offer more than just music to stand out?

Tyrese: Yes, absolutely. Here’s the thing, I’m not doing this for any other motivation other than saying if I’m going to tell my fans, and I haven’t sold the most records, we can name 2- other artists that have sold more records, I ‘m not claiming to be the top anything, I’m just me, I’m just innocent, black ass, ghetto ass Tyrese. I’m just a simple guy, that’s got a few talents and I’m trying to milk this shit for everything I can before people stop calling my name, lol.

Furious 7 Movie Poster —–click to buy tickets

But at the end of the day, fans have never had more access to their favorite stars than they do now. Think about it, Brittany Spears used to have a fan site where you could write her an email…Good Luck! Lol. Now we got this thing called social media and the fans can say if I don’t know who you’re dating, who you’re screwing, who you’re arguing with, who your baby momma or baby daddy is, what you’re driving, what you’re living in, what you’re doing on vacation and what you’re eating , then I aint supporting shit. If I don’t “know” you or feel like we homies, then I’m not spending my money on anything.

Now, fans are way more aggressive about content. So I see what’s happening, I don’t drop an album but every five years and some people think of me as irrelevant. That’s fine, because if you’re relying on me to keep the music industry afloat, you’ll be shit out of luck. Cuz I’m not dropping singles and albums every year, I can’t do it, I got no time. So the beautiful thing is this, and this is my statement and you can quote me on this…The reason the quality of most of these albums are not as good as they used to be is because of what I call a financial tsunami. Its one thing to buy a house and it’s another thing to keep a house. You can only keep it by not only being successful once, but being successful two, three and four times. And a lot of times when recording artists don’t have any other source of income they are forced to drop an album every year. They have to do it. Which means they’re not taking their time. They’re not emotionally, spiritually and mentally focused on what they’re doing. They’re saying I just released something really hot and the label is pressuring me into doing it again. So you’re not going to get their best because they’re being motivated by the money, by the need to stay relevant, and by the need to stay hot.

So if I wasn’t making money from movies and being a chairman and entrepreneur of Voltron Entertainment and all these different sources of income that I’ve created for myself I would be another artist that’s doing 50- 60 shows a year, I would be another artist that’s doing albums every year, trying to do features on everybody’s song because I’m desperate to stay hot, desperate to stay relevant musically so I don’t lose my house.

Like we said, it’s not what the fans want to hear, its what they need to hear.

BTS for Dumb Shit: