Interview: What has she been up to?
Misha chats with R&B singer Olivia

Despite the inclement weather in New York City last night, I met up with the former first lady of G-Unit, Olivia at the swanky Tribeca Grand Hotel. We sat, chatted and bonded over a few things we share in common. We’re both Aquarians, of Jamaican heritage, love Anita Baker and have fathers that know how to throw down in the kitchen.

The R&B singer dishes on her new album, reality show - and the one beauty item she cannot live with out. Check out what fab chick Olivia had to say about it all.

Misha: After being on a couple labels, J Records, G Unit/Interscope and now Universal Records, are you currently happy?

Olivia: I wouldn’t say I’ve been on a couple; it’s only been two. When I think of a couple I think of like seven. (laughs) But I’m very happy getting back to being a solo artist.

M: How would you describe your transition between labels, from the beginning to now?

O: That’s a hard one. I took off about two years where I went oversees to chill, record and just perform. Just to get away from US. And I think that’s why people thought I stopped doing music, which is funny to me because I would never stop doing music regardless of anything. I kind of just wanted to regroup and not have people say Olivia from G-Unit. I wanted people to go back to just saying Olivia.

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M: Did you feel more accepted overseas?

O: Oh definitely. I always did. Even when I got to the Unit, we were huge over there. They already knew me from being on J. Records. I just love overseas period. If I could literally stay over there I would. The fans are more supportive. They just love music. Everyone is so nonchalant over here because everyone thinks they’re the sh*t. Everyone could just get along, it’s not that serious and that’s how it is over there.

M: Tell me about your new reality show "love & hip-hop" airing on Vh1 this March.

O: It’s basically what the title says. It’s "Love & Hip-Hop". I’m the single one on the show and obviously the artist along with two other girls on the show, Chrissy who is Jim Jones’ girlfriend and Emily, Fabolous’ baby mother. We talk about everything we deal with in the industry. It shows both Chrissy and Emily trying to have their own careers outside of their mates and me with my career up until now. It shows everything. It’s really a good show music wise because we don’t really have anything like it on TV right now, besides Brandy and Ray J’s show, but Love & Hip-Hop is different. We’re giving you real stuff.

M: Can we expect any drama to unfold on the show?

O: There’s always going to be a little drama regardless, but it’s all good drama. There’s no cat fighting. It’s not Basketball Wives stuff. It’s real stuff that goes on either in the industry or with women getting to know each other.

M:Can you give us any spoilers?

O: No I can’t, but just know you really get to see the real Olivia. I don’t hold my tongue. How you see me is how I really am. And that’s why I decided to do the show, because no one really knew my personality. I felt like I was always the one in the shadow of something. I was always the pretty girl who does the hooks. But both Chrissy and I have crazy punch lines, so you’ll be hooked. Trust me.

M: You have a new album coming out, can you talk a little about it? What can we expect from Olivia today as opposed to Olivia we already know?

O: Yes, it’s titled 'Show The World' and it’ll probably be out sometime spring, maybe summer. I will have to say it’s my best work because I got to do it my way this time around. I got to do exactly what I wanted. When I was with G-Unit I had to conform to the group, so I wasn’t able to produce the R&B music I wanted because I was with five other rappers. I would’ve looked crazy. Now I get to tap into real R&B. On J Records as the first artist signed, I was the experiment artist.

I grew up listening to Anita Baker, she’s my absolute favorite artist. Brandy was always a favorite of mine, and of course Luther Vandross. And you can’t have anything without a little bit of sexy, which is Janet Jackson. I’m kind of everything, but still keeping it young and fresh. It’s a mixture of so many things.

M: Speaking of Janet, you did a cover of one of her songs? Which song was it?

O: Oh yea, Let’s Wait Awhile, which will be on my next mixtape. This mixtape will coincide with the airing of the show, also being called Love & Hip-Hop and will be released on Valentine’s Day. I feel like I need to keep putting music out there because people really haven’t heard from me. I’m just keeping a lot of work out there until the release of the album.

M: Is there an R&B artist you would love to collaborate with?

O: I’ve always been a big Sade fan. I wouldn’t mind doing something with Maxwell, or even John Legend.

M: Would you ever work with another hip-hop artist?

O: As far as collaborations, yes. Signing to another hip-hop label, no.
M: What have you learned about yourself from working in the music industry?

O: Well, I’ve always known I was a strong person. But dealing with all this has made me realized that I’m very resilient. I’ve learned how much I can take. I’ve also learned that I can take more that I thought I could.

Being in this industry as a female is hard, especially when having to deal with rumors both bad and good. It can be a lot to deal with. But I have a new manager who is wonderful and my father is a very big inspiration in my life. I have a good corner.

M:Tell me a little about your budding acting career?

O: Ah yes. Still doing the acting thing. Tracey Moore is my acting coach. But I’ve been trying to hold off to get the album done. That’s priority right now.

M: When you are not recording or reading over scripts, what do you do to relax and just have fun.

O: I like to do regular stuff. I hang out with my girlfriends. I spend time with my ten godchildren. Yes I have ten. Movies. Of course shopping. I love to bake and cook. My dad is actually a chef who learned from my grandfather in Jamaica.

M: How would you describe your personal style? Where does Olivia like to shop?

O: There are a lot of different things I love to wear. Sometimes I’m very much an Abercrombie girl, it’s actually one of my favorite lines. I love tanks and sweats. Cropped tanks also. I am very much throwback Aaliyah when I want to be.

But then again, I love Marc Jacobs, Missoni, Gucci, Diane von Furstenberg, all of that. I’m all over the place. I like to do everything. I don’t like to stick to just one style. One day you might want to be fancy and the next laid back.

M: I can understand, especially in this weather.

Ok lastly, if there were one beauty item you could not live without, what would it be?

O: An eyelash curler. I have long eyelashes, so I can just like to curl them and I am good to go.

Now that you’ve got the latest scoop on R&B artist Olivia, be sure to follow her on Twitter at for all the buzz on her upcoming album. And for all you reality TV fanatics, “Love & Hip-Hop” premieres on VH1 March 6 at 10pm EST. Will you be tuning in?


Jay 2.2.11  

Dope! Very good interview

Eclechick 2.2.11  

Great interview Misha! I'll probably tune in to the 1st episode to see if I'm interested.

Anonymous 3.2.11  

shes not the only artist on the show english ballin song jim jones and the the spanish rappr girl somaya reece are on the show to

Pristina 3.2.11  

Great interview Mish! I like Olivia. I always felt like she got shifted around smh.

TheSeventhDistrict 4.2.11  

Good Interview. I thought she stopped doing music too. Reality shows are my guilty pleasure so sadly I'll be watching yet another...hopefully she's right and its not like BBW

Anonymous 18.2.11  

Good interview Misha!! I'm glad she is coming back! I was thinking that 50 scared her out of her career but clearly he did NOT....I think I'll be tuning in on March 6th!! =)