HW Interview: With Temika Moore

Temika Moore

The Philadelphia native whose mentor was George Duke is performing her new single “I’m Not Ok,” from her new “End of Me” (EP) that premiered on BET JAZZ and CENTRIC TV on Monday, September 24th, 2012 at the Shrine in Harlem. Even though her single “I’m Not Ok,” is hot, we think the God-fearing vocalist is A OKay. Here, the she talks about Stacey Lattisaw, Iyanla Vanzant, crowds of negative voices, perception and her fave hangouts in Harlem.

Harlem World: Who has inspired you in your career?

Temika Moore: I was inspired by seeing Stacy Lattisaw perform on Soul Train as a young child.

Since then I have spent my life working to become all that I had envisioned for myself. I’ve studied music, I went to performing arts schools, enrolled in music courses in college, and have performed at every kind of venue imaginable to hone my craft and live out the dream I saw for myself. It has not been easy to follow my dreams. There are crowds of negative voices both internally and externally that threaten to derail my dreams everyday. But, I guess that’s part of the journey learning to fight through it and still keep moving in spite of it. I realized it’s all connected. Pursuing my dream has brought to light so many things about my life and character that I needed to address it in order to be a whole person. I am thankful for each and every experience that has brought me to this point in my life. They were challenging, yet I am very thankful.

HW: Who are your favorite artists?

TM: Favorites, Anita Baker, Rachelle Ferrell, Oleta Adams, Lizz Wright! Angela Winbush, The Clark Sisters and Commissioned.

HW: What has been one of the greatest moments in your career?

TM: I have several: Seeing my video on national television, performing with Will Downing, performing for Iyanla Vanzant and opening for Chante Moore.

HW: Where do you get your talent (father, mother, aunt, etc.,)?

TM: God, I grew up hearing my grandmother singing around the house.

HW: When did you realize you had the talent to sing?

TM: When I was 9 years old I was asked to audition for my church’s children’s choir.

HW: Is your new song “I’m Not Ok”, about a personal experience?

TM: One day I remember having a conversation with my 80+ year-old great-aunt and I remember saying to her, ‘No one told me life would be this hard.’ I remember her matter-of-fact response hit me at the center of my soul. She simply said, ‘You never asked.’ After I recovered from laughing at my great aunts’ sarcasm, her response led me to reflect on other areas of my life to uncover other things ‘I never asked.’ Suddenly, I realized I’d unearthed a long list of questions that begged to be answered. I was always pretty certain I knew what I wanted out of life. However, I realized I never asked God what he wanted for me? What is in my life that shouldn’t be? Why do the same situations resurface over and over but with different characters? Why do I make choices that appear to be right at first but eventually prove to be unbeneficial? What am I really here to do? What really matters in the end? In recording this project I spent a lot of time, reflecting, reading, studying, listening, praying, apologizing, repenting, forgiving, asking, thinking, understanding….healing. I now know the answers to some of my questions. But, I’ll spend the rest of my journey discovering answers to the questions that remain. I hope The End Of Me sparks a fire in you that starts the momentum for asking the ‘tough questions.’ I believe we are all yearning to understand our individual maladies. I believe when we come to the end of ourselves that’s when life opens the door for a paradigm shift, either a shift toward or away from our God given purpose.

HW: What advice would you give a young talent who wants to follow in your pumps?

TM: Perception is so key to happiness and fulfillment in life. If one believes their life is a complete mess it probably is just because of the amazing ability our emotions and mind have over us. However, if you see the beauty in the mess and appreciate who you are becoming in the process there is much to be gleaned from it that makes for great conversations, great songs, great movies, great products, great opportunities and most importantly getting to a place of contentment to finally appreciate what is important in life and what really matters…loving God and people. That is success fo’ sho’!

HW: How can our readers stay linked to you?

TM: They can go to my website temikamoore.com, or at facebook.com/temikamoore, on twitter at www.twitter.com/temikamoore
or www.reverbnation.com/temikamoore.

HW: What is your fave thing to do in Harlem?

TM: I like to hang out at spots like the Shrine and Billie’s Black.

HW: Thank you, Ms. Moore.

TM: Thank you.

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