*The world has changed, with whole industries caving to the rise of the internet, seems no one’s limited relying on scarce permissions from big business, anymore. Today, even in the case of fame — people can just go get it themselves. Right?
Let’s consider this:
In the new world, so to speak, this is not entirely a joke or presumptuous but, among things dwindling — let’s ponder: Movie theater attendance? T.V. channels, radio stations, and even JOBS; publishing houses, whole erected structures — like brick and mortar buildings, and close contact with other people (Covid 19, anyone?).
We Zoom, stream, order food and shop for everything online. We create our celebrities online too, independent of the traditional, agreed? Let’s continue…
Like in the case of TikTok’s Gigi Vega
EURweb’s Billie Jordan caught up with the 21-year-old and talked about her remix collab with TEC, Big Freedia and BlaqNmilD. Plus, her original video release of “Watchu Tryna Do?”, a single charting #28 on Itunes R&B. Plus, Vega gave us the scoop on what’s she’s like and into these days. See Vega’s videos, interview questions, and answers at the end.
At 5 ft tall, the Tik Tok break-out star is budging through anonymity making a stance – she’s one poised (and seemingly quiet, careful with her words), multi-talent digging roots in entertainment — on her own? The smooth-talking self-described, Latina, from Boston with fun-to-hear-east coast swag is living her dreams, carefree of waiting for the call. But she got it anyway, starting with smart collaborations and a type of self-publishing on Tik Tok.
So, what’s Vega thinking about all this:
“It’s Gravy” she said. “Honestly, my career is the most amazing thing to me. It’s all Gravy.”
Vega debuted in 2020 with “Mistletoe Kiss.” The holiday song quickly went viral on TikTok, with over 15k videos and 10 million views.
“It’s a Christmas song that makes you want to dance,” said the song’s co-producer, Miklos Malek. Mistletoe Kiss rose to #3 on the Itunes Dance Charts, reached #27 on Billboard charts, and made its way on the Netflix movie soundtrack “The App that Stole Christmas”.
Though right now, in the face of COVID-19, we’re stuck walking around in public muzzled — wearing masks, in today’s world possibilities are wide open; there is access to do so much.
Vega’s not the only one:
“I didn’t have a part in the old music industry at all. It was me doing stuff and no one listening,” said Tai Verdes, 25. “Then TikTok made people listen,” Verdes told Quartz, a peer online publication.
That’s all well and good, but is it easy?
Reports say for Verdes, it was following a whim. He was sitting in his car, practicing his vocals, then a quick upload, and three months later there were 4.5 million streams of his song “Stuck in the Middle”; which made the number-one spot of the Spotify Viral 50 chart — with thousands of fan videos using his song on TikTok. Less than 100 days after uploading his video multiple record labels were calling for him.
“TikTok has altered the music industry, from artists’ path to stardom to the power of record company executives,” according to the Quartz write-up; How TikTok is changing the scene.
Still, in the case of music, let’s guess educated-ly that talent and probably also good looks have a lot to do with sudden success on TikTok. Vega and Verdes are both attractive.
For stats on just how the TikTok app is churning stars visit Quarts, there’s a whole write-up. Stat’s like: Did you know in 2020 TikTok was ranked the most downloaded app of the year? Plus, it was just back in 2018 that TikTok went global. But that’s not it — there’s more on the industry phenomenon. Check out some stats here.
Through the medium of social media and the internet, we self-publish and find fame doing a plethora of our own individual things — while standing before access to the world. So is it true — the internet has taken over as the way to fame and popularity? Gigi Vega is new evidence.
So just who is Gigi Vega:
At a private suite at the Lowes Hotel in Hollywood, Gigi Vega sat down with EURweb’s Billie Jordan; this is what she said:
EURweb: How did you first get your start?
Vega: My father is a musician that’s been a big part of all this (Vega’s dad is a jazz musician; pianist).
EURweb: How are your family and friends handling your career choice and sudden popularity?
Vega: It was interesting at first I feel like for a while people thought I was kind of crazy. Cause you know I’m not from here, you know? I’m from the East coast and things are so different. But now I feel like it’s all support. I feel like I’m always ready for everything. It’s all worth it for me. It feels great – this is always what I wanted to do. So, I’ve been working towards this for a long time.
EURweb: What’s “Watchu Tryna Do” about?
Vega: When I wrote the song at first it was supposed to be about the club song but then it was like Covid hit so I was like this doesn’t really make sense so I had to change it. It’s Crib now instead of Club. So I had to be more appropriate with Covid and everything. It’s a super fun vibe definitely one you would want to play in the club.
EURweb: What are your favorite sayings?
Vega: My sayings are kind of weird cause I’m from the east coast my sayings are a little bit different from how people be talking out here. It’s very different. So mine is more like: That’s a fact. Or facts! I like saying it’s gravy, too.
EURweb: What are your pet peeves?
Vega: What irritates me? I would say when people are yelling at you outside to like go put your mask on – you know when you’re outside in nature. That’s not cool: you need to mind your own business, she said. I really don’t like that — it’s like really rude.
EURweb: So, they say you are a triple threat: You’re a good dancer, actress, and singer. How does hearing that feel?
Vega: It was cool because I was doing a lot more acting on film, but then singing kinda took over my life. But I was doing a lot more of that — so I’d love to get back to that. But yeah, I’ve had some dope mentors, you know what I mean, so I think I got really lucky. ‘Cause I had mentors who kind of saw me and they were like oh. It helped build me into like the person that I am.
The interview with Gigi Vega continues below her videos…
Watch Gigi Vega’s “Watchu Tryna Do” Video
The interview with Gigi Vega continued …
EURweb: Tell us about the “Watchu Tryna Do” Video?
Vega: I wrote the script for the video, too. The whole video was inspired by a specific situation, but not entirely though.
EURweb: And about “Mistletoe Kiss”?
Vega: I put that one together. I didn’t have a lot of connections in the beginning because I wasn’t even out here yet. So, I really was just doing it. Christmas is like such a special holiday I feel like, and I’m always jealous of people who do like these little Christmas [things.] So that’s something I really, really wanted to do. I want to be that person who has like Christmas material you know what I mean so…that was just something I had a really great time with and I definitely hope to do more in the future.
EURweb: What was it like working with Miklos Malek?
Vega: It was great! I worked with a few producers out here. It was so funny. I was like this is the kind of thing I’m going for. It’s always good to collaborate with new people. They are amazing. So it’s cool to put yourself out there and to see how people just gravitate towards your stuff it’s really amazing.
EURweb: “Watchu Tryna Do” was ranked in R&B. What category would you place your music in?
Vega: I would say it’s Pop but definitely with a little flavor, not like your typical Pop, Pop. Like a combination of Pop and Hip-hop.
EURweb: Who would you say are your top influences?
Vega: I’m inspired by people who really perform. You know, Janet’s always been dope. ‘Cause, she was really full out. So for me, it’s like entertainers who are really full out and really like you know — entertain, put on a show, take you on a journey.
EURweb: So, how does it feel to live your dreams (singing, dancing, and acting)?
Vega: Singing, it’s honestly amazing. It’s literally like always what I’ve wanted to do so. I feel like it’s the most comfortable place to be in — that’s what I would say. There’s really nothing else that I would want to do. Dancing: I would say that it’s just really a form of expression so like certain things that you don’t get to say on a daily basis like you get to say it all — in that type of space. And I think that’s a really great thing.
EURweb: What’s important to you?
Vega: I feel like it’s important to know what your purpose is and to contribute to this world in some type of positive way. Purpose is different for everybody, but I feel like it’s good to focus on those things. Especially when things get a little crazy it’s good to refocus in on life. And be like – this is my purpose and this is what I’m going to do no matter what; if anybody likes it or doesn’t like it, you know?
EURweb: What’s your take on world events?
Vega: It’s definitely a crazy time like a lot of things are happening that are like … A lot’s happening. But I think it’s all necessary a mean like with the riots and everything I feel like that was bound to happen. I’m glad that it did — you know? Because it’s like I feel like it just had to happen and people need to know they can’t get away with this type of stuff. So, I feel like certain things are hard but it has to happen so you know it’s all for the better. I think change will come and things will get better and so you know we just got to keep working at it.
A bit more personal questions:
EURweb: On spirituality?
Vega: People think I’m not spiritual but I really am. I feel like I try to be in touch with everything that’s going on in the universe and everything.
EURweb: Do you have lots of friends?
Vega: My circle is real small. Sometimes it’s better to have a tighter circle and have the right people around you versus like tons of people who are like – not everyone has your best interest. So, my circle is pretty tight.
EURweb: A boyfriend?
Vega: No, (smiling) no boyfriend.
EURweb: What do you look for in a guy?
Vega: I like a tall guy. ‘Cause I’m short and I’m tired of being like tiny and I need something to switch it up. I like somebody who’s tall, someone who’s funny, cool, and easygoing. And doesn’t take life too seriously — you know what I mean?
EURweb: You’re 5’1 is that a thing — are people always mentioning it?
Vega: I’m not [quite as tall as ]5’1. People are always so surprised. They’re expecting something different. People kind of treat me like I’m younger or people kind of will be like — sort of disrespectful because of that. You know what I mean? It’s frustrating but at the same time, there are pros and cons to everything. The pros: [I] feel like, [I’m] always in the front.
EURweb: Other than your work; what are your favorite things to do?
Yeah, I mean I’m down for a lot of things you know. I think it’s good to have balance. But I always like to just hang out and I would like to go to the mall but that’s kind of like not the best thing to do right now. But I’m really down for a lot of things. I don’t like to do things that’s too dangerous.
EURweb: Do you like dressing up, girlie-girl-like?
Vega: I’m like somewhere in the middle because I have my super non-girlie girl east coast moments; my hard moments definitely come out. But I like both. I represent both, you know what I mean. But, I never was the type of person to go all out with hair and make-up until like — that was something that I had to do.
Vega is signed with Co-CEO’s Miriam Bavly, and Peter John’s BreakOut Music (BOM), founded in 2019.
Gigi Vega’s social media