Singled Out: "It Had To Do W/ What The Subject Matter Was & It Was Death Of A Loved One"
Tuesday, Nov 22, 2011 12:15AM
[SOHH highlights a hot single each week and offers a unique look at the record. After Juvenile explained the true definition of "Power" last week, renowned singer Betty White dishes out the goods on her Lil Wayne-featured "Grapes On A Vine" record.]
At first, "Grapes On A Vine" was a record that I didn't even want to do because I wanted Lenny Kravitz and Whitney Houston [as guest features].
People might say, "Whoa, where do you get those two together?" But it had to do with what the subject matter was, [the] death of a loved one and what they leave behind and [if] people think you really represent the family well. It also deals with the way people receive you as having something to do with their own perception.
It's about the eyes of the beholder. I wanted this record to be so much bigger and when I told the story, I tell of what the mother used to always tell me and what the father used to always tell me. And because Lenny had lost his mom, father and grandfather, who were very close to him, Lenny said to me one day how empty he was feeling and how lonely he was feeling.
That made me feel more obligated to tell that story in song. On it, I'm talking about legacy and loved ones that have gone and moved on to where the sun shines all the time. The song's talking about if people are willing to give us a chance, we're going to shine. It takes a different kind of person to stand in front of 100,000 people and not get scared.
I'm telling people that we're not all going to be like everybody else because we're all different. It's OK. It's what you allow us to do with it and stop holding us up under a microscope like, "Oh my God, I can't believe she just did that."
They know us but we don't know them and that's why it's important that people recognize that we may not all taste the same but at the same time, something good comes out of it.
I feel "Grapes On A Vine" is a well-written song and because Whitney had lost her father and because Lenny had lost his mom, dad and grandfather, that's what had inspired me to write the song. I lost my mom too, so I feel like the timing on that song now is just perfect because I can sing it with my whole heart because my parents are gone.
Singer Betty Wright proved to be a consistently strong presence on the Miami music scene, primarily in the '70s and '80s, although she continued to record through the 2010s. Her latest album, Betty Wright: The Movie officially hit retail stores fall 2011 and features new music with The Roots, Snoop Dogg, Lil Wayne and more.
Check out "Grapes On A Vine" featuring The Roots & Lil Wayne below: