FEDORA NATION MAGAZINE INTERVIEW
INTERVIEWEE: JAIES BAPTISTE
How did you get started? Was the path that you took hard? Please explain? I can’t really recall getting started; it seemed to always just be a natural progression in my life. I began playing the violin at 8 years old, then began vocal classical. I began writing songs for an outlet when I was around 9. My mother used to take me to different competitions, NAACP ACT-SO, UIL competitions, all-city orchestra tryouts, etc. I attended Sarah Kelly’s Music School and had 2 x Grammy-nominated Sarah Kelly as my music mentor!! I had the opportunity to perform for Brian Vibert (5 time Grammy award winner, participated on 256 Grammy nominated projects), Brad O’Donnell, Head of A&R and VP at Capitol Records, Christian Division, Tobin Hyman, Talent Producer for the show The Voice, and for Mike Clink, producer for Guns N’ Roses, Motley Crue, Whitesnake, Triumph and more.
As for modeling, it was a complete fluke. I wanted to take senior pictures in college and a friend of mine took some really good pictures for me. He posted them on their page, and different people contacted him, asking him what my rate was for modeling. I had no clue, so I researched a few sites to see what models were charging, and went from there!!!
Acting came much later, I never really considered it. I was offered a role in a film, and OMG, I sucked!!!! But, I loved it, decided to enroll in a Film Acting Academy under Lee Stringer and take it seriously.
What made you fall in love with your field? Music is my first love, so, it was innate. (Smile) However, I have discovered a passion for acting that I never knew I had.
Do you feel any pressure in the industry? There is always pressure to look a certain way, act a certain way, and have a certain skill set. The best thing that you can do is to do your very best to stay ready, so whenever the opportunity presents itself, you aren’t trying to do the impossible, you have prepared for this moment and you are ready to give it all.
Do you think people respect you as an actress knowing that you sing, song- write and model in the industry? I think there is a level of respect among creators/artists for each other. You can’t help but respect the hustle and the time that someone dedicates to their craft. Hopefully, there are people out there who respect the quality of work that I put out, but, you can’t please everyone! (Smiling) All you can do is your best. I think that I am my toughest critic, I’m really hard on myself, and if one person likes it, well, that’s good enough for me because I’m doing something that I love, not really for the opinions of others although I welcome them.
What would it take to make Jaies Baptise a household name in the entertainment industry? You know that is just about having the right opportunity presented. I meet so many talented people who haven’t been given the opportunity to be heard or seen and it’s truly an injustice for some of these people. I think it’s a timing thing, meaning, as long as you don’t give up on yourself, eventually, that opportunity will find you.
What inspires you to create? I’m inspired by EVERYTHING! (Laughs). It can be a conversation, a trip to the grocery store, an odd noise that I hear when backing out of the driveway….the possibilities are endless.
How do you feel about being a role model to young girls? I hope to inspire young women and girls to follow their dreams and not feel that they need to compromise themselves to get there. That all things are possible if you just believe in yourself and never lose sight of your dreams.
What do you want to achieve with your acting? I just want to keep rising and moving forward, and not backward. I’d love to end up on the big screen, but I’m happy with smaller projects as well. It’s a passion of mine, so as long as I’m able to just pour myself into a character and step outside of myself for those fleeting moments, I’m happy.
What are your greatest achievements in modeling so far? I think that being the face of Dicey Grenor’s Narcoleptic Vampire series is pretty cool. I’m so thankful that she chose me to be on the cover of four of her books, and the ride that we embarked upon ever since has been incredible, I’ve met so many people who love our collaborative work (author/model duo) and it’s been an experience that will always be special to me.
Are there any plans for new music from Jaies Baptiste? Yes, I have a new song called Heartless that will be released on iTunes very soon. At this time, I am working on getting more music out; I just haven’t had too much time due to my busy film schedule.
What are some things that you want your fans to know about you? That I’m just a regular down to earth chick who enjoys great conversation, positive vibes, and I love to laugh!
Thank you so much for the interview. Thanks for having me.
Can you let everyone know when they can either see you on television or on stage acting or singing? Yes, I have been cast for a new show that will air in the summer. Please follow me on facebook (Jaies Baptiste), Twitter (Jaies Baptiste), or IG (@jaiesbaptiste) for updates on the show. Since the contracts are not finalized, I cannot disclose much information about it at this time. Also, please check out my new single, Heartless, on iTunes soon.