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Songtrust Spotlight: Joyce Wrice

Known for her sweet lyrics and distinct tone, Joyce Wrice delivers a sound that resonates with this generation. The Southern California native’s breakout debut album Overgrown was released independently in March 2021 to widespread critical acclaim garnering praise from the likes of Rolling Stone, NPR, The Los Angeles Times, VOGUE, Harper’s BAZAAR, i-D, and NOISEY, as well as landing on numerous ‘Best Of 2021’ year-end lists.

Her latest album, Overgrown features the singles “So So Sick” and “On One” and highlights Wrice’s impressive vocal range and songwriting prowess showcased effortlessly alongside a high profile set of esteemed R&B and hip-hop contemporaries including Freddie Gibbs, Lucky Daye, Kaytranada, Masego, Westside Gunn, UMI, and Devin Morrison. In support of the album, Wrice gave electrifying live performances at Day N Vegas Festival, H.E.R.’s Lights On Festival, and with Kaytranada at Brooklyn Mirage. Beginning in March 2022, Wrice will embark on a 26-date North American tour alongside her “Falling In Love" collaborator, Lucky Daye. The critically acclaimed R&B singer-songwriter is the theme song vocalist for Disney+'s "The Proud Family: Louder and Prouder" the long-awaited revival of "The Proud Family."

Wrice grew up in Southern California to a Japanese mother and African-American father. She discovered her love for music in the passenger seat of her father's car by imitating chart-topping songs that played on the radio. Entering a new age of technology, this passion continued into high school where she took to YouTube, showcasing her developing talents and everlasting discography of 90's R&B covers. After college, Joyce moved to Los Angeles in search of her voice, her own words, and experiences. 

 “My intention is to inspire and encourage people to never give up on themselves and to embrace their journey with joy and confidence despite the struggle to get to where you want to be,” says Joyce of her music. From falling in love and falling out, to owning one's insecurities, the messages in Wrice’s music are always packaged in a heartfelt harmonic bow. 


WHAT OR WHO INSPIRED YOU TO GET INTO MUSIC?

I grew up an only child and was introduced to music through my dad. He’d play music all the time and I fell in love with artists like Brandy, Tamia, Biggie, and Luther Vandross. From those experiences and spending a lot of time alone, I’d sing all the time and watch music videos and award shows mostly for the performances, and fortunately that all led me to find my own voice and find healing in music.

HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOUR STYLE OF MUSIC AND PERFORMANCE? HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOUR PHILOSOPHY AND STYLE AS AN ARTIST?

I would describe my style of music as "feel good" music. Not only do I create for myself but my intention is to uplift and encourage the listeners. My performances and shows are a good ass time! I love to dance so choreography and dancers are important to me. Live instrumentation is also big for me so I must have my band.

My philosophy and style as an artist are to always enjoy the process. Sometimes I can get caught up in the result and overthink things. I’m learning to have fun and embrace the creative journey.

WHAT DRIVES YOU TO CREATE, AND HOW DO YOU DEFINE SUCCESS FOR YOURSELF IN MUSIC?

Creating feeds my soul and is an outlet for me to transform anything into value whether it’s pain, joy, confusion, etc. Success in music for me means that I’m constantly growing and elevating while grounded in my truth. I always want to be challenging myself and my artistry. 

THROUGHOUT YOUR CAREER, WHO HAS HELPED YOU THE MOST WITH DEVELOPMENT AND SUPPORT?

My managers, Jasmine Collier and Eddie Fourcell, have helped me the most as well artists and musicians in LA like SiR, Mndsgn, Polyester the Saint, and D’mile. I moved to LA by myself and did not know anyone. Big shoutout to LA for being my playground and grooming me into the artist I am today.

SOMETIMES BEING IN THIS BUSINESS CAN BE OVERWHELMING. DO YOU HAVE ANY TIPS FOR MAINTAINING PERSPECTIVE AND NOT SWEATING THE SMALL STUFF?

Whew, yes it can be! However, I’m constantly having to redetermine to not be defeated by this business by reminding myself of my purpose. I would encourage other artists to do the same! Remind yourself why you do what you love and the impact you have and hopefully, you are inspired to continue to be in your power regardless of the obstacles along the way.  

YOU'VE RECENTLY BEEN ON TOUR WITH KAYTRANADA AND LUCKY DAYE. AS A PERFORMER, WHAT DO YOU ENJOY MOST ABOUT THE TOURING PROCESS? HOW DO YOU DETERMINE YOUR SETLISTS? AND, LASTLY, WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE TO SOMEONE ABOUT TO TOUR FOR THE FIRST TIME?

I love engaging with the audience and meeting everyone in person! My setlists are really determined by what kind of show it is. If I’m opening for someone, I like to prepare a setlist that will go with the mood of the artist I’m opening for. It’s also important I choose songs that are catchy for an audience that may not know me.

If you’re about to go on tour for the first time, I’d suggest you pack a portable humidifier, a vocal steamer, vitamins, and hydration pills because you probably won’t be getting the rest you need so you want to do everything you can to keep your voice healthy and hydrated! I’d also exercise as much as you can leading up to the tour so you can build stamina and endurance if you have back-to-back shows. These are some of the things that allowed me to have a successful tour for 40 days and 26 shows.

DO YOU HAVE ANY ADVICE FOR YOUNG MUSICIANS JUST STARTING THEIR CAREERS, BASED ON WHAT YOU’VE EXPERIENCED?

Have fun! Don’t rush your creative process. Perform live as much as you can! Do your best to keep a healthy relationship with social media where you can use it as a tool but also make time to disconnect and stay on top of your mental and physical health. Don’t compare yourself to others. Everyone has a unique story that only they can tell. Make friends with other artists and don’t be afraid to ask for help. Learn as much as you can about the industry and build your team. Always remind yourself of your purpose and stay grounded in your truth.

WHAT MOTTO, AFFIRMATION, OR QUOTE EMPOWERS, INSPIRES, OR MOTIVATES YOU? 

Life happens and it’s so easy to get swayed and feel stuck and unmotivated. I’ve always loved these words by Toni Morrison:

“This is precisely the time when artists go to work. There is no time for despair, no place for self-pity, no need for silence, no room for fear. We speak, we write, we do language. That is how civilizations heal…I know the world is bruised and bleeding, and though it is important not to ignore its pain, it is also critical to refuse to succumb to its malevolence. Like failure, chaos contains information that can lead to knowledge — even wisdom. Like art.” 

FOR FUN, IF YOU WERE STRANDED ON AN ISLAND AND COULD ONLY HAVE (3) ITEMS WITH YOU, WHAT WOULD YOU BRING?

Food, a guitar, and a book by Buddhist philosopher, Daisaku Ikeda. 

WHAT DO YOU HAVE COMING UP NEXT?

Live shows, new visuals, new music, and more merch! 

HOW DID YOU COME TO SONGTRUST?

I was introduced to Songtrust through my friend Monty, who is also my manager Jasmine’s business partner! I feel so protected and relieved that I’m able to collect the royalties that my songs earn. I had no idea about this and I know many other artists have no clue as well. I’ve shared it with my friends and will continue to put others on!

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