Sunday, 11 March 2012
GIRL OF THE MOMENT: Smart and sassy Leontré will rock you
Every so often, a new artiste comes along with talent so outsized and immediately arresting that it’s hard to believe that he or she is a newcomer. Add 23-year-old Leontré Roberts to that list. The supertalented songstress is the writer-performer behind “Jail-house Rock,” a groovy reggae-soul hit about crime and punishment that’s rapidly climbing the charts and video playlists – and getting her properly noticed.
Admittedly influenced by such luminaries as Tanya Stephens, Dinah Washington and India.Arie, the 23-year-old singer-songwriter (who goes by Leontré) brings a nuanced, wise-beyond-her-years depth to the music scene, and it’s nothing short of refreshing.
As it turns out, Leontré is drawn to songwriting that captures the sometimes gritty realities of everyday humanity. “I actually wrote [“Jail-house Rock”] like ten years ago, and it’s really saying that there are consequences for our actions and you have to accept that,” says the St. Elizabeth native, who has been honing her skill for musical expression since her days at Hampton School.
Her sound, she says, is a unique mélange of styles. “First of all, there are no specific genres that I venture into. I like everything. I’m just inspired by things that I see and hear everyday,” she confesses. “I sing about most things that people can relate to.”
An unabashed lover of the arts, Leontré reveals that plans for her future include the publication of a poetry anthology and the (hopefully) summer release of her debut studio album, Middle-Aged 18-Year-Old. “I wrote most of those songs between age 15 and now. I like to write my own songs, and to be a true artist you have to have the full package and I think I am that,” says the singer, whose interests also encompass the media and fashion. “As an artiste, I stand firmly behind what I have to say and what I believe in, and I am very conscious of the messages that I am sending.”