Tristan Wilds Talks Euro-Pop, Where He Fits Into R&B, And Debut Album

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By: Vibe / December 1, 2010

R&B is going through a lot of changes right now with the fusion of heavy European and pop sounds into recent hits. What sound are you trying to achieve? Where do you think that sound will fit in?
Actually I don’t want to fit in. I wanna definitely change it up, and bring something new whether it’s just a new voice or a brand new revolution altogether, but I’m definitely still tryna carve out that lane and figure out myself which way I wanna go, how I’m gonna do this, ’cause it’s so many different lanes right now that I could just attack, and I just gotta make sure I pick the right one.

R&B is going through a lot of changes right now with fusing European sounds and pop. What sound are you trying to achieve? Where do you think that sound will fit in?
Actually I don’t want to fit in. I wanna definitely change it up, and bring something new whether it’s just a new voice or a brand new revolution altogether, but I’m definitely still tryna carve out that lane and figure out myself which way I wanna go, how I’m gonna do this, ’cause it’s so many different lanes right now that I could just attack, and I just gotta make sure I pick the right one. 

How do you feel about the direction R&B is taking?
It’s different strokes for different folks. People feel however they feel about the music, but me, I grew up around music that people feel. Like, you put on some Teddy Pendergrass, you feel that emotion. Even up to the 90’s, you put on The Fugees or Lauryn Hill’s album, you feel that pain, you know? That’s definitely my aspect on R&B. That’s the R&B that I love. Not saying that I don’t dance to “OMG” and all of that because those joints do bang [laughs]. I can’t even front, they bang, but just me personally, the way that I look at music, an they way that I love to hear music, I love to give the people something they can feel.

Do you take your rapping as seriously as the singing?
Definitely. Rapping is something that I’ve been around; it’s something that influences my singing, and just influences everything about my life. Especially coming from Staten Island, such a hard hip-hop land. You know we got Wu-Tang Clan, everybody’s trying to get out of their shadow, but those dudes are huge!

You have a lot of friends in the music business. Are they giving you advice on how to approach this side of the entertainment industry?
I definitely talk to as maybe people as I can, be it Alicia or Ne-Yo or even Uncle Jay. You know, just [getting] advice and see what way I should go, how I should play it. They keep telling me the same thing: ‘Just follow your heart.’

There are talks of you releasing a full album in early 2011. Is that true?
Um, I don’t know. I don’t know yet. [laughs] I think that’s a lot of pressure. A whole lot of pressure, but I think I’ma definitely have something for you guys by 2011, like, a mixtape or something, and let them hear different sounds. See what people like, and from there, we grow into something bigger and bigger.

Lastly, I’m sure your female fans would like to know: Is there any “her” that you have fallen for?
Right now, no. There’s no lucky lady that I have fallen for, but you know, I’m definitely keeping my eyes open [laughs].

Tristan will be starring in the film Red Tails slated for release in early 2011. 

Tristan Wilds “Fall 4 Her” (Full Song) by GabrielofSFPL