What is your name?
What is your genre of music?
Give us a little bio about you.
New York City native Simone Reyes was raised on hip hop and has been the Godfather of Hip Hop’s right-hand since high school. She spent years joyfully and successfully helping to mold entertainment mogul/ philanthropist, Russell Simmons’ dream into a reality that became legend. Then without warning, Russell Simmons, very publicly stepped down from his businesses to redirect his focus on global healing and Simone’s life took a turn. During that time and for the first time in her adult life, she was able to focus on HER dream and follow her passion…COUNTRY MUSIC.
Dedicated to honoring the timeless country sound of her idols such as Patsy Cline, Loretta Lynn, Tammy Wynette and others, her songs are both contemporary and authentically true country.
Simone, who is of Irish/ Asian/ Spanish descent is also an ex- reality star, world renowned animal activist, TEDx speaker and author.
Gratefully proving that dreams don’t have an expiration date, Simone now spends time in the studio recording /co-writing songs, conceptualizing music videos and letting her voice finally be heard. It is her prayer that she will lead by example for others, especially women, who have a song in their heart that has yet to be heard and whose time has come to fly.
What made you go into music?
Music has always been in my blood. My father is a flamenco guitarist and my mom sang back in Ireland where she was born and raised. Music is a passion that I never thought I would have the time to share. Now that I am sharing it with others it feels so good. I feel very lucky.
Are you a signed?
No I do it all myself under Greenwich Village Girl Records.
You released your new single ‘Priceless’, tell us more about the single.
Priceless is a country song about falling in love, losing at love, getting replaced by your love and somehow ending up the better, stronger person … with a little help from the perfect dress.
What is the meaning behind ‘Priceless’.
When I was first presented with the song, I was immediately drawn to the extremely relatable storyline about a woman who got dumped and then had to summon up the courage to go on with her life and get back out in the world -even when that means being in the same room as her ex and his new love interest. I don’t think there is a person on earth who hasn’t been in a similar predicament. I loved the original lyrics which were “ spent a hundred dollars on this mini black dress – it was worth it “ because we all want to look our best when these uncomfortable (but often inevitable events) present themselves in our lives. But I knew the dress had to be really killer because if a woman has the right dress she can rule the world – and for us country girls that often means an Idyllwind dress. Miranda Lambert knows how to dress her girls right. I changed the lyric adding in the Idyllwind reference and dressed up the outfit with a pair of earrings from the line because her stuff is so reasonably priced I knew the character would have a bit of cash left over with that hundred bucks.
The true message of the song is of course that we can overcome anything if we believe in ourselves. Sometimes wearing the right dress helps as does being surrounded by your tribe of friends who have your back no matter what.
Describe the track in two words.
What was the writing process like?
“Priceless” was written by Sydney Maxine, Kalynne Michelle Schoelen and Ariel Lask. I just added the word ‘Idyllwind” into the chorus. The song was produced, arranged and recorded by Al Bonhomme..
What was the recording process like?
My producer Al Bonhomme really knows country and has a stable of fantastic musicians who he calls away from their jobs of playing for some of the biggest chart toppers in Nashville to come in and lay down what we need. He does most of the guitar parts himself because he is quite a master at it. Al knows how to get the best out of me vocally as well. His secret weapon is his studio cat, Coconut. She is 19 years old (and deaf at this point) so when we record she is often there providing moral support and inspiration.
Who did you work with on the Single?
Al Bonhomme, Gary Morse, Alexis Sklarevski, Skip Edwards and Molly Rocklind
Will we see an EP or Album this year?
Yes! I have quite a lot of finished songs and I am dying to get them out there !
Do you have any shows coming up
? I will be singing “ In The Ghetto” by Elvis / Dolly Parton at the Rhodehouse Series in LA in a few days. It’s always a true blue country crowd which is fun.
If so where will you be heading?
Not far, it’s here in LA which is where I live now. I am originally from New York City and my family still lives there.
What else can we expect in Early 2020?
More vidoes! If I had my way, I would have a video for every song already shot and ready to go. I LOVE to come up with story boards and shoot videos. I really am fortunate to work with Kerry Porter/ Frontman Media who can make anything look great. He has a great eye for story and his passion makes him a perfectionist – which is what I am so we work well together.
Would you be up for collaborations if other musicians wanted one with you? and who would they have to contact?
I would love to! They should just reach out to me via my website www.simonereyes.com or DM me on my Instagram @simonereyesmusic
Do you play any instruments?
I play a bit of guitar and can shake a mean Tambourine!
Who are your influences?
The classics… Patsy Cline, Loretta Lynn, Dolly Parton all the way to Miranda Lambert and every female country singer in between. I’m pretty much obsessed with country music.
How do you get inspiration to write songs?
I consider myself a lyricist first and foremost. Love is my biggest inspiration of course… mostly, I find myself writing about my experiences with people I have loved and lost.
Where do you see yourself now in 5 Years?
Playing more music, writing more songs, playing out and being grateful for the unexpected ride
When you’re not doing music, what do you do?
I love animals and I try to do everything I can to promote kindness to them.
What was the song you listened to most that influenced you to go more in to the music scene?
I think the Fleetwood Mac song, “ Silver Springs. ” That song felt like Stevie Nicks had read my Diary and written the song for me and someone I had loved. It was freakishly personal to me. I remember thinking how incredible it would be to write and/or perform songs that made other people feel the same way. That is always my goal. I want people who listen to my music or watch my videos to say, “ That’s me”
What’s the best advice you have ever been given?
The best advice I have ever been given is, “ Dreams Don’t Have An Expiration Date so live accordingly.
What advice would you give to aspiring musicians not about the industry and just as an artist?
I would say that insecurity and fear can either be used to help you or hurt you. I choose, as I hope they will, to use it as fuel. I would tell them to continue to challenge themselves and to get out of their comfort zones because that’s where the magic lives.
What quote or saying do you always stick by?
This Too Shall Pass.
Where in your hometown is a must go to visit?
A stroll around the West Village in the Spring in New York City can’t be beat.
Your coming off tour;
1/ Where do you go first? Home
2/ Who do you see first? My cat, Bardot.
3/What do you eat first? A Veggie Burger and Fries, extra Ketchup.
When you are at a gig, what are 5 things you cannot forget?
The lyrics, water with lemon, a snack, breathing deeply and a smile.
Do you have social media