Thank you so much for joining us! Let’s show everyone you’re a normal human being. What are your hobbies, favorite places to visit, pet peeves? Tell us about YOU when you’re not at the office.
“Well, thanks for having me. My hobbies are playing squash, watching YouTube, chilling with friends (sometimes even karaoke ;)) and playing a game of pool with my management. My favorite place to visit is L.A. because whenever I go there I always discover something new about the city or make new friends and, of course, recording in the L.A. studio is always a blast. I have a pet turtle, he is getting real big because he is now seven years old. His name is Shell.”
Can you tell us something about you that few people know?
“Few people know that I’m also an actor and was actually studying for it back in Belgium. After The Voice, the big break came, and I got the opportunity to go to America and record my album, go on tour, make music videos, etc. The only two things that were tough is that I missed my family and I had to quit college.”
Do you have any exciting projects going on right now?
“I have a ton of new music coming: ‘Party Like a Rockstar’, where we shot the music video in downtown L.A.; ‘It Don’t Matter’, another single music video shot in Las Vegas; “Imma Be The One’, also just dropped and this is just the beginning of a lot of songs and music videos coming your way. We just made deals in Asia and Brazil, so I’ve got a lot of promoting to do :).”
Many people say success correlates with the people you meet in your life. Can you describe two that most impacted your success and why?
“First, I have to say my parents because they always supported me, drove me to auditions, performances and let me attend art school. Not every parent is that excited about their kid going to art school at the age of 14.
“The second one is a man I met during The Voice. He came to me and said he wanted to work with me because he saw potential. And at the moment I was looking for someone to help me in my carrier, expanding my brand, etc. He taught me everything I know about the biz and helped me connect with the right people. He brought me to stages on the other side of the world and, most important, believed in me. It’s thanks to him that I am where I am. I’m proud to call him my manager.”
Can you discuss one of the lowest points in your life personally or professionally and how you dealt with it?
“When going to New York for the first time, I had a hard time performing and stepping up my game during writing sessions, recordings, photoshoots, etc. I think a lot had to do with the culture shock of the new lifestyle that I wasn’t used to, but to be fair I still don’t really know what it was. But it was a big problem.
“I didn’t want to be hard to work with, or be a shy artist, so it had to change. I dealt with it by talking to friends and family and maybe even mostly myself; telling myself that I am the only one who can change the reality. And after a while I was comfortable again.”
Leaders always seem to find ways to overcome their weaknesses. Can you share one or two examples of how you work outside of your comfort zone to achieve success?
“I try to write in a lot of different styles. It’s not always great but it helps me to reinvent myself while writing the next song and finding the one place only a few think of going with a song. Also, working with other artists. It’s easier to write an album on your own. But I think working together is a way to create exiting new music. That’s why you will find a lot of features on my album.”
The concept of mind over matter has been around for years. A contemporary description of this is having mental toughness. Can you give us an example (or two) of obstacles you’ve overcome by getting your mind in the right place (some might call this reframing the situation)?
“I really had to convince myself to ‘let go’. I wanted everything under control and as perfect as can be. But growing up I learned that that’s impossible. I had a hard time letting go of controlling my life; it blocked me from using my full potential.
“Some things just happen for no reason. Sometimes you just grow apart, sometimes someone else takes over, and there is nothing you can do about it.”
What are your “3 Lessons I Learned from My Most Memorable Failure?
1. Never take something/someone for granted.
2. If you want change, take matters into your own hands.
3. Always make time for humor 😉 (it’s important).
What unfiltered advice can you give aspiring stars regarding how to avoid common mis-fires in starting their career?
“Know that you can’t do everything alone. You need help. Find people with the same vision and create together. People will sense that and eventually someone will pick up on that.”
What is the best lesson you learned from your worst boss?
“I once had a teacher that always brought up the fact that I was a singer and would always make fun of the profession as ‘not a real job; it brings nothing to society’ and so on and so on. And, I was always embarrassed and didn’t say anything. But it got to me that I couldn’t defend myself and other singers. I guess the lesson I learned is that the best way to defend myself from people like that is to be successful and work my ass off to prove them wrong.”
What is one “efficiency hack” you use consistently in your life to keep your time and mind free to focus on your strengths and passions?
“Well the good thing about having a bad day is the fact that it gives you material to write about, so even when you are in a bad mood or let’s say even a dark place, you can translate that into music. Afterwards you feel better. That’s my hack: music.”
What’s on the drawing board for your next venture?
“Hmmmm, let’s see … is there still room on it I wonder :); a lot of exciting things coming, stay tuned!”
What did we miss? Feel free to share any other thoughts or advice on overcoming failure, initiatives you’re currently supporting, any other relevant information you would like to share with the readers.
“Its cliché but it is for a reason: if you want something, don’t wait for it to magically happen. Commit your time to it and show your passion.”
What is the best way our readers can follow you on social media?
This was really awesome! Thank you so much for joining us!
Originally published at medium.com