Were you always excited about music? I grew up in a very musical household, and music was always the backdrop for family gatherings. We had a console stereo back in the day, and I would just sit next to the speaker and listened to WBAS, which was our big R&B station. I would sit there and listen for hours.
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Did you play an instrument in your early years? I started playing piano by ear at a young age. I would listen to songs and try to play them back on the piano. Even when I began to sing in junior high school, any song that I liked, I’d go to the piano and recreate it. How and when did you transition from being an amateur to being a professional musician? I started getting paid for singing at around fifteen years old. At that time, I was taking vocal training at music school in Philadelphia.
That was my tipping point. At what point in time did you mature musically? After graduating from high school, I joined my first band, called A Different Class. I was the lead singer, and we worked nightclubs up and down the east coast on weekends. We worked most weekends. Even thought two of us were underage, we were in the nightclub singing away and earning money. From the ages of eighteen to twenty-four, I was just focused honing my craft in front of live audiences, and I was just enjoying myself doing it. How eventful was your first solo project? In 2008, I released my first solo project, called All My Love. It was a critically acclaimed CD. I was taken by surprise to see this album becoming hot in the UK and in Japan. The title track, “All My Love,” made it to Amazon’s top-ten single R&B singles chart. Did I hear that you were nominated for a Grammy?
My latest project is called Robert Gee the EP. The first song that was released from it in August 2016 was “All I Ever Wanted.” It was not long after that I learnt that it was on the Grammy shortlist. The song got nominated in the category of Best Performance Traditional R&B, and I was elated. This was my first intro into the Grammy conversations. To get the respect of your peers at that level was much more than I expected. It was an amazing experience to be nominated; did not win but it still felt good. We know you worked with Jane Eugene from Loose Ends. Anyone else that we should know about? Oh yeah; I worked with Kashif before he passed away. Both Vesta Williams and Teena Marie were very close to me. Vesta was my first professional job as a backup singer. We worked together for over ten years. For a short and memorable time, I worked with Teena Marie. I spent a lot of time with these guys, we shared dinners, holidays and birthdays together. I have so much fun memory of our time together before they passed away.