Chicago has birthed many of today’s—as well as tomorrow’s—biggest music stars and BJRNCK is the latest. The R&B singer-songwriter recognized her voice at a young age, attending choir lessons in church before moving to Los Angeles to attend a performing arts high school. Fast forward many years, BRJNCK has blossomed into a gifted songstress who’s collaborated with artists such as Saba, Sylvan LaCue, and Lucky Daye amongst others.
Today, BJRNCK is preparing to release her eagerly-awaited EP this fall. She’s undoubtedly carved out a space in the R&B scene for herself with releases like this year’s “Thug Cry” as well as “Waiting On You” and “Real” featuring Boogie. The Chicago songbird is extremely talented, delivering honey-drenched vocals that connect at the heart. If you haven’t heard of BJRNCK just yet, prepare to hear the rising songstress all 2021.
We had the opportunity to chat with BJRNCK in regards to discovering her love for music, festival performances, and her new EP amongst other things! Read below.
Did you grow up surrounded by music? How did you discover your talent for songwriting and develop your expressive vocals?
It’s definitely an exciting journey, it’s been a roller coaster. I started in church around fourth grade, me and my family couldn’t really afford vocal lessons so I was in every choir lesson from Monday through Sunday. That’s really how I got into music seriously. I discovered my voice super young and I think I was around five. I just knew I was going to be a superstar! I would be singing “Happy Birthday” on people’s voice mails, in the grocery store, wherever I could honestly.
Where do you draw your songwriting inspiration from?
I started with gospel first and that was my entry to singing and learning to do runs. I think my freshman year of high school, Jhené Aiko dropped her first project Sailing Soul(s) then Miguel had dropped. I feel like R&B was kind of lit then and that’s how I got into it. I grew up on Usher and Chris Brown, and that’s what made me want to get into R&B more.
Honestly, I get most of my inspiration from love. Whether it be me falling out of it or falling into it, I’m a serial lover at this point. Most of my songs are about that but really whatever I’m feeling, but love is my shit!
How do you define love?
Crazy! Love is crazy, it’s a strange feeling. I feel like when you’re in love with someone, it makes you do crazy stupid things and that’s the best way I can describe it!
Out of all of the music you’ve released thus far, which track do you feel most connected to and why?
Honestly all of them! I’m connected to all of them, I feel like they’re all different phases of me. Obviously, your most recent song you put out is like you’re favorite because I get tired of my songs. I would say “Thug Cry” is my most favorite right now just because it’s the newest.
Are there other artists that you dream of working with in the future?
Chris Brown is obviously one of my favorites because he kind of raised me vocally. As far as females, I feel like BIA would be a super dope collaboration. I feel like she’s an up-and-coming artist doing her shit in such an amazing way.
What does a typical studio session look like for you?
Lots of Casamigos. Definitely Casamigos-driven; I like to record with all the lights off. I don’t really like people looking at me so I usually turn the lights off in the studio. I don’t really like a lot of people in the session so it’s usually just me and the engineer. Some people have a gift of being in the studio with a lot of people, but I’m just now getting in this space of being vulnerable. It’s my little sacred space so I like it to be small.
You performed your latest single, “Thug Cry,” during your Lollapalooza performance—how does it set the tone for your forthcoming EP?
Lollapalooza was a great experience, that was my first festival show. To be able to go home and do that was so amazing, and all my friends got to come see me give back to my city. It’s crazy because a lot of my fans are little girls, there was this cheer squad that was there. That was super amazing to see!
The EP has been great, it was the first time I was able to be vulnerable and talk about my past. I think people are really going to be able to connect to it. It’s so specific but I think that everyone goes through this, men and women. I’m definitely catering to the ladies but some guys are going to feel this too!
Was that particular song inspired by previous encounters you’ve had in a real-life?
Yeah! It’s about, usually in a relationship, the guy is always trying to make the girls cry. I was just tired of us having sad girl songs. And nowadays, women are gaining their independence back, we’re starting to be like “nah, I’m not dealing with that shit anymore.” Now, the guys are crying because girls are turning savage.
In regards to the future, now that shows are kind of coming back and everyone is eagerly waiting for new music, what message would you give to all your fans waiting to meet or see you live?
I would just tell them to get ready for me to share a piece of myself with them. I can’t wait, and as I begin to put out more music and they get to know me more, it’s going to be a different experience. I’m putting a face to the music and I just can’t wait to meet everybody!
If you enjoyed our chat with BJRNCK, check out our interview with Tai Verdes!