When it comes to artists from overseas making an impact that has no choice but to be felt by everyone including here in the States, there’s no denying what the UK has brought to the table over the years. The legendary Sade Adu has had a career that’s spanned for more than 30 years, Marsha Ambrosius found success in the past as a member of R&B/Hip-Hop duo Floetry while finding her own success as a solo artist and reputable songwriter after splitting with her bandmate. More recently, we’ve seen artists like Ella Mai, Jorja Smith and MNEK gain traction from ‘across the pond,’ – even Drake has added a British accent to his evergrowing list – and now newcomer KVNG is looking to make a mark of his own.
London born singer Jordan King is one of the newest to come out of the gate led by a slight name change and new single. Now going by the moniker KVNG he’s decided to rebrand himself while giving his artistry a clean slate to continue evolving while describing his new single “Face Time” as “the most current, authentic version of me.” The chill yet attention-grabbing track is definitely worth a spin and will have you anticipating his next move.
I recently got the chance to chat with the singer about his new single “Face Time,” his growth over the years, the current state of R&B and more.
Check out my interview with KVNG below!
To start things off, KVNG, You recently celebrated being streamed over half a million times, how does that feel as a new artist?
KVNG: The feeling of being told that multiple people took the time to listen to your music that much will never truly sink in man. I guess these are milestones I once dreamed of reaching and now I’m here. It’s crazy! My main thing is to really enjoy the ride rather than focus on the numbers.
Now you’re anticipating the release of your newest single “FaceTime,” can you give us a little backstory on how the song came together?
KVNG: My boy and co-producer, RBKeyz (@Rbkeyzmusic) brought over a skeleton of the beat to my studio, the minute I heard it I loved it, I didn’t even know how special it was yet but I just knew it had something. By the next day, we had the first draft of FaceTime.
With the release of “FaceTime” how soon can listeners expect an EP or album?
KVNG: I don’t wanna throw dates around yet because I’m enjoying the freedom of creating and letting the music kinda dictate when we’re done but definitely, you’ll have a project from me in 2019.
Do you have your eyes on any collaborations?
KVNG: Maurice Moore and Bellah are two artists I definitely want to collaborate with this year but I have feeling there will be some collabs even I couldn’t anticipate this year
Your upcoming project will be the follow up to your 2016 EP “The Night Shift,” how have you changed as an artist in those three years?
KVNG: The main word that comes to mind is Growth. As an artist, I have learned so much about my sound by being blessed to work with so many talented creatives but also I have grown as a person. There’s so many stories and vulnerable layers which I want to explore in my new music.
You’re the Co-founder of the RNBRIT (@RnBritUK), which aims to unify British R&B musicians, what made you decide to start this movement? Who else is apart of the RnBrit Movement?
KVNG: RNBRIT for me is about creating A community; something that I wish I had coming up as British rnb singer, in a time where the genre was underappreciated. A home to share music with people that appreciated sounds like ours and other related genres that didn’t fit on other platforms.
With my co-founders, SM & RBKEYZ and the amazing team we have built together along with the dope support from so many creatives within the scene we’re steadily growing into a dope platform for British R&B.
What artists have inspired you?
KVNG: There’s so many but some of my most influential have to be Michael Jackson, Beyoncé, Usher, James Brown, T-Pain and Joe
Since you describe yourself as R&B’s Love Child, out of all the artists you’re influenced by, which two are you the product of?
KVNG: Haha, that’s a dope question. If I had to pick it would be MJ and B, but I’m glad I’m not cuz that would be one hell of a legacy to follow on after from both of them! Lol
With the current state of mainstream R&B being heavily influenced by “trap” sounds or singers taking a more rap/sing approach, how do you differentiate yourself from the new norm?
KVNG: There’s no need to. My vibe will attract my tribe.
I don’t worry about standing out to those who can’t see past the norm, they will catch on. I focus on those that already do.
You were recently cast as the lead in a new UK tv show, can you tell us more about the show and what to expect from your character?
KVNG: I don’t know how much I can say, but just know its got a talented cast and dope storyline and will definitely be entertaining for my fans to see me in my acting bag haha, Sorry I can’t tell you more right now.
Last year you put out covers to Ella Mai’s song “Trip” and also an acoustic version of XXXtentacion’s song “SAD,” will there be more covers in the future or are you solely focusing on your own original content?
KVNG: Right now I’m focused on my original music but if I catch a vibe to something that comes out I’ll definitely cook up a rendition
Lastly, If you had to pick five R&B albums that shaped or inspired you, what would they be?
KVNG: Michael Jackson – BAD
Justin Timberlake – Justified
T-pain – Three Ringz
Usher – Confessions
Joe – All That I am
Follow KVNG on social media and don’t hesitate to check out his new single “Face Time” availble on all platforms.