Seven-time Grammy Award nominated R&B legend, Joe, is back. The multi-platinum selling crooner is set to release his seventh album, Joe Thomas, New Man on September 23 on Kedar Entertainment Group/563 Entertainment.
Over the course of Joe’s 15-year career, he has released nine top-ten singles on Billboard and R&B charts. His new single, “E.R. (Emergency Room),” is already shooting up the charts.
Hana speaks candidly with Joe about his career journey.
Q) How do you marry the right music to the right lyrics?
A) I go with a feeling… a vibe. Executive decisions usually determine which records get pushed. I definitely write my records and a lot of it comes from within. It’s also about having the right team; I went from a major label to an indie, and picked an impeccable team.
Q) What’s your most successful album to date?
A) Success for me is having an album that’s so good, the fans are eager for the next one – such as was the case with my first album, Everything.
Q) You incorporated hip hop into your 2007 album Aint Nothin Like Me unlike past projects. Why?
A) The rap world has been a part of my whole life. I was a fan of Erik B and Rakim. People like Nas wouldn’t be on a record unless he could feel the essence of what I was doing. It was a pleasure working with all the artists that came to the table to be apart of this project; there was a respect there that only exists with a certain caliber.
Q) As an R&B artist, what’s your opinion of what an ideal woman is, and what’s your opinion of what a man should be to that woman?
A) It’s a lot of things: I look at my family, how we were raised, how difficult things were. I respect someone who can look at my story and be inspired, and know that my life is incredible and respect my grind. I hustled, took the back seat at times when I should have rode the front. I respect women who can see what the end result will be.
A man’s role to that woman is to provide security, be reliable and trustworthy. A woman doesn’t want a thug, but she doesn’t want a punk either.
Q) For all the romantics out there, what’s your current relationship status?
A) I’m solo, taking my time with life and taking things as they come. If it’s right, then it’s right.
Q) What are your upcoming projects?
A) Aside from the new album releasing September 23rd, I just signed my family to a gospel album scheduled for release next year.
Q) All artists have a signature sound and style. What’s yours?
A) I’m classic. It’s about making something that will last for a long time, and that young and old folks can listen to. It’s important that people get a feel for who I am, so I keep it as honest as possible – and show respect. You can be nice and cool at the same time; you don’t have to be one of these artists that get into the industry and act like they’re too good to talk to people. Treat people the way you want to be treated, that’s the golden rule.
Hana G. for Connex List 2008