Featured on fashion blog ChloeloveCharlie.com
Featured on New York City blog StreetWalkersNYC.com
Last year we introduced Harvey Champagne as our first contributor and we are proud to introduce him again as a feature! In this Q&A you will get to know him a little better and get a glimpse at the fun and exciting projects he has going on. Singer, songwriter and soon-to-be author, Mr Champagne is letting his talents lead the way.
SWNYC: When we first met, I met you as Harvey Van Chapman a.k.a. Tyce. I’ve seen you transition through a few pseudonyms if you will; Tell our readers where the name “Harvey Champagne” came from?
HC: LMAO! Well long story short, way back in the day a country ass bill collector called my phone asking for a “Mista Harry Champagne.” So of course, I told her that I know no one by that name! Since then my friends have always referred to me, or the alter-me, as Harvey Champagne which finally stuck becoming a part of my evolution as a person. Thinking back, Tyce was more of a fictional character as opposed to Harvey Champagne being closer to my true self and frankly where I’m at musically.
SWNYC: For people who might not have heard you, how would you describe yourself vocally and your sound?
HC: If you asked me this question years ago, I’d say I have no idea. However, now I see my sound as pretty universal. The common denominator in any of my music or any sound I create is SOUL because that never leaves. I do have a raspiness to my voice but I also have a projected/powerful voice, or in other words I’m just loud for no reason lol. I also have a bit of a range for a male vocalist. A lot of people have said that it’s like a grown man/woman somewhere deep in my throat always ready to take it to church…and I have to admit, it’s true!
SWNYC: How involved are you in the creative process of your music/career?
HC: I have a strong hand in everything that I do. At times it’s a bit overwhelming and I feel like I need help but overall I feel like if I’m not 100% happy then I can’t expect anyone else to be. I’m not a complete master of my craft yet but eventually I’d like to be because I am the kind of person (cough::control freak::cough) who would rather do it all myself.
SWNYC: Wow, It’s a lot for a person to try to do it all, what inspires you through all of that?
HC: Honestly, raging emotion inspires me to do the things I do. I’m emotionally connected to just about everything. I mean…I am a pisces afterall…
SWNYC: Where do you see your career in the near future?
HC: I see myself continuing to perform, write, make music and watch it grow bigger and bigger day by day. I also just finished my first book entitled, “The Doe Family Chronicles Volume 1: I have NO time for foolishness!” which is set to be released soon. It contains 101 mini-memoirs which were created as a tool to minimize my anger and negativity. I describe them as slap-in-the-face grievances about specific individuals I’ve had to put in the past. It’s very…”Oh, no you didn’t!” lol
SWNYC: Tell us the story behind your new single “Walking Away.”
HC: The song was about my last relationship which was a very abusive one. It was hard to do but a little easier to write about. I actually wrote the song the day I actually walked away from the relationship. Soon after with the help of Brandon “B.Alex” Durrette, MIDOUT and Kult Records we turned it into a wonderfully melodic goodbye leaving me inspired to actively participate in spreading the word about domestic violence.
SWNYC: Should we be expecting a video, new single, or album soon?
HC: YES!!! We have the video for “Walking Away” in the works and I’m continuing to record so that I can put together my debut album which will produce another single ahead. You can stay updated on www.harveychampagne.com or my FB page facebook.com/harveychampagne
SWNYC: Are there any artists you’d kill to work with?
HC: ABSOLUTELY! Are you kidding me?! I have a loooong laundry/bucket list of producers/songwriters/artists that I want to collaborate with. To name a few…Cee-Lo, Alicia Keys, Esthero, Robyn, Adele, Jennifer Hudson, Eminem, Leela James, Mark Ronson, Nikka Costa, Solange, Amel Larrieux, Chromeo, Janelle Monae, Sam Sparro, Timbaland, John Mayer, Teedra Moses, Robin Thicke and many many many many more.
SWNYC: I know you’re from North Carolina oirginally and you’ve lived all over the states. What keeps you here in NYC and how does that inspire your music/writing?
HC: I’m not sure…but what I do know though, is that NYC is amazing and from the first moment I stepped foot in this place I felt my soul connect. I’m so inspired by the variety of culture, life, people, places and sheer inconsistency of this city. There’s no place I can’t go and find myself inspired in NYC.
SWNYC: Last but never least, what’s your favorite spot in NYC?
HC: I’ve always loved Union Square. It’s always been like an epicenter or mecca for me. You can simply chill there or you can leave and go into any direction and have a totally different city experience. I’ve written a lot sitting in Union Square. I also love anywhere near the water with a view of the three bridges connecting to Brooklyn and either skyline.
Featured on 2Chix1Mic Radio Show Blog
Alone Again with Harvey Champagne
Presented by 2chix 1blog, written by JenniFDB
We recently had the pleasure of having Harvey Van Chapman a.k.a Harvey Champagne as a guest on the 2chix 1mic show, and we debated if the music industry/public would embrace openly gay artists? The jury is still out on that verdict but we know one thing: ready or not, Harvey will carve out his own path because this established singer/ songwriter’s new single: “Walking Away” is making it rain in the club scene.
Below we get to catch up with Harvey for a 2chix Q&A:
JenniFDB: Hey Harvey, let’s revisit the topic for the show: Is the music industry ready for openly gay artists? And while we are are at it : who are some artists that you’d like to see come out of the closet?
Harvey V: Honestly, is the music industry ready? NO…Is society ready? Yes…I think we are vastly growing into a more open and accepting world, however their are parts of society that are still primitive and ignorant as hell. Who I’d like to see come out of the closet?…hmm…well Ricky Martin is already out, and he hasn’t called me yet lol. Okay honestly, I’ve heard rumors about of Ne-Yo and Trey Songz and it’s believable. We need someone who has an upper hand in the urban music industry to really shock, awe and set an example so that people can grow up and get over their ignorance.
JenniFDB: Where can fans hear your music and what should they expect from you in 2010?
Harvey V: My fans should expect to hear new music as I’m constructing a new project. I’m keeping them in the know, even if it’s a little snippet of a demo to listen to this time around. They can also expect me to be more tangible with more live performances. You can keep up with me on Facebook or Twitter ‘Harvey Champagne’ or always check out my website www.harveychampagne.com
JenniFDB: Favorite song off your LP? I think I know, but I want to know why.
Harvey V: My favorite song I’ve done thus far is ”Walking Away,” which I’ve been performing around NYC and other cities soon. It’s a song that bled straight out of my heart with no hesitation and I think it perfectly displays a side of my emotion that I can more easily express in music. In short, this song is ME. People who know me will instantly feel like I’m in the same room in one of my usual rants when they hear it lol.
JenniFDB: What inspired you to become an artist?
Harvey V: My older sisters actually inspired me. It wasn’t until I was about to graduate high school when my sister, Dau, convinced me to move to Boston because she was in a music group working with a producer and vocal coach and thought it was a good idea for me to work with her as well because she believed in my talent. And so that’s what I did and the rest is history…
JenniFDB: If you had to choose a quote to describe what motivates you day to day, what would it be?
Harvey V: “The universe always gives you exactly what you need, not necessarily what you want.” I repeat that aloud to myself throughout some days as I go through my crazy experiences (both satisfying and disappointing) as a way to keep myself grounded and in check.
JenniFDB: If you could have one super power what would it be and why?
Harvey V: I would love the ability to fly…I’m always late for everything and I think if I could fly I’d still be late but I’d be late AND dope as hell all at the same time lol…so people might not care that I’m always late cause I can fly…BOOM.
JenniFDB: Harvey, I know you are originally from the south, do you think certain people are meant for certain cities?
Harvey V: Hell YEAH, I’m already there baby I’m in New Yoooooooork, concrete jungle where dreams are maaaade ooof…lol
JenniFDB: What do you enjoy doing the most when you are not performing or working on your music?
Harvey V: I LOVE to dance, I grew up dancing alongside playing music and writing. The music moves you uncontrollably, which is fun but kind of annoying at the same time. Other than that you can always catch me jogging somewhere in the city or hanging out and laughing it up with my friends. I don’t know what I’d do without my friends or laughter. Laughter really is the cure for a lot of things, and I’m one of those people that thinks everything is funny. I’m also one of the few left in the world that believe in loyalty as it seems loyalty is vintage in this day and age.