“Passion is what fuels us. It’s a raw intensity, it’s a boldness, it’s a relentless drive,” begins a quote by Sean “Diddy” Combs on an awning inside Harlem Parish. Just for the night, the cathedral was transformed into a purple, pink, and yellow iridescent scene. Filled with influencers from all walks of life (and industries), the luminous room came together on Thursday night (July 21) in celebration of the latest CÎROC Passion flavor, the newest edition inspired by the defiant legacy of the Harlem native and mogul.
“The newest flavor is a spirit that can’t be described in words, you have to experience it,” continues his words displayed behind bottles of CÎROC near the venue’s entrance. “It’s more than a flavor, it’s a frequency. Passion is the purest and most profound expression of LOVE.”
With a busy open-bar offering curated CÎROC drinks, including the “Live Passionately,” “Simply Passion,” “Everyday Passion,” and “Passion Sparkler,” attendees sipped their cocktails while exploring the many different brand ambassador-influenced sensory demonstrations. Each installment left attendees with a heightened sense of smell, touch, taste, sound, and sight before leaving for the evening. DJ JadaBoo kept the party moving with a specially curated playlist fit for an uptown event, as the professional photo station caught everyone’s best angles.
Amongst the who’s who of their respective industries, Chef Richard Ingraham, illustrator Karabo Poppy, fashion designer LaQuan Smith, and singer Bryson Tiller made appearances at the event as the faces of the newest edition, each representing a different element of passion.
Chef Richard brought out everyone’s sense of taste and smell through his curated food dishes made to compliment the flavor of CÎROC Passion. Karabo Poppy brought the essence of sight through interactive digital artwork filled with colors and textures. LaQuan Smith brought the element of touch with a red silk fabric room that attendees could feel, and bringing the element of sound to Château CÎROC, Bryson Tiller allowed guests to tap into their senses by celebrating his latest single with Diddy, “Gotta Move On.”
Tiller took a moment to chat with VIBE about how his partnership with CÎROC came about.
VIBE: So tell us, how did this partnership happen with Diddy and CÎROC?
Bryson Tiller: It started with Puff and I working on a song together. He invited me to his house in Malibu, and he played a song of mine that I didn’t even know he knew existed and he had been listening to it for months. Next thing you know, he plays me his version, I loved it, and now we’re here.
Being around Diddy and just watching him as a music icon, entrepreneur, businessman, and more, what’s one gem that you take from him?
He’s not afraid to speak on whatever he’s feeling. If he don’t like the energy of something or the vibe of something, he going to say it, and I really like that about him. He encouraged me to do the same thing with my craft.
There’s been a debate about how some artists are not really tending to their vocals and development as they should. What’s something that you do to make sure you stay up-to-par as an R&B singer?
I’ll be honest with you, I be smoking a lot, and I probably should stop (laughs). For me, I don’t know. I’ve never been much of a — I’ll be honest, I’ve never been much of a singer-singer. I’m more of like, I fell in love with the art of creation. I feel like singers are very particular about singing. Like, when they are singing to a woman or a crowd, they’re very locked in when it comes to delivering a strong vocal performance.
I used to be kind of into that thing, and then I found my way into a studio, and I fell in love more with the art of creating the songs. So, I kind of lost touch when it comes to singing. I don’t know, for me – I guess I don’t have to do much because I’m always just constantly creating music, and there’s all these effects in studio like auto-tune and reverb and stuff to make me sound good.
What do I think R&B is missing right now? I think it’s missing, maybe… I don’t know. Damn. That’s a good question. I feel like maybe people should be more brave, brave enough to step outside of the box. Steve Lacy, he’s stepping outside of the box right now, making something that’s really true to him and what he thinks, and it’s different from everything else. I really love that and respect that.
You’re partnering with CÎROC on the launch of their new Passion flavor. The motto for CÎROC is to “Celebrate Life Responsibly.” How do you do that?
I don’t do too much. I don’t party too much. I stay in the house. I play video games. I take care of my kids, and I make music.
Now that you and Diddy have dropped the “Gotta Move On” video, what’s next for you?
I’m working on the album right now at the moment. I’m really excited about it. Different from all the other albums I’ve ever released in many ways. And man, I’m working on some other stuff that I can’t talk about just yet, but—
No exclusives for us?
(laughs) No exclusive, but I will say that I’m working on collaborations with different artists. So, that’ll be cool, and you’ll hear me on a lot of people’s projects … in the next year.
CÎROC Passion is an exotic blend of tropical flavors. Infused with pineapple, citrus, mango, and hibiscus aromas, there’s an experience in every sip that gives an idea of what Passion would taste like. CÎROC Passion is available in wine and spirits stores now.
Check out more images from the event below.