Just in time for the holiday season, Glade’s Museum of Feelings is providing a uniquely immersive experience, engaging our sense of smell in hopes of stimulating childhood memories and giddy excitement.
Such was the case on Nov. 23, when the five-room gallery gathered a buzzing crowd of visitors at its opening, including one special guest to center stage. Who better than singer-rapper Becky G to bring on her emotionally-driven lyrics and intoxicating vocals to an already exhilarated audience?
Leading up to the Chicana’s performance, visitors enjoyed a heartwarming and interactive experience from start to finish, from the exterior’s lighting of alternating patterns based on New York City moods, to the “Calm” exhibit, which allowed visitors to walk among the clouds as smells of lavender and vanilla guided them into a calming bliss. In between, attendees also enjoyed “Optimistic,” “Joy,” “Invigorated,” and “Exhilarated” exhibits, each one boasting fascinating 3D patterns, vivid lighting, and sweet fragrances to evoke the appropriate mood.
After the final exhibit, guests were encouraged to take pictures inside the mood booth, which measured an individual’s mood based on the image and hand scanner. The interactive table also bolstered the experience, asking guests to lean forward and take whiffs of the various aromas that corresponded to happy emotions. Scents like lavender, cherry, vanilla, and berries brought the audience to a serene and joyful mood, while Becky’s swaying performance left viewers with a lasting takeaway.
Becky, accompanied by her guitarist, peeled back the layers before playing “You Love It” and her career-changing hit, “Shower.”
“As an artist, I am constantly bringing my emotions to life through my music,” said Becky G. “Personally, when I’m in the studio, there’s nothing better to me than a smell that’s inspiring, that feels clean, that feels peaceful, and makes me feel relaxed. [Being on the road] is definitely the hardest, because I’m Latina. I’m Mexican-American, so I got a big ol’ family. And [because] we are so close, being without them is one of the hardest things, so the smell of home is one of my favorite scents ever. When I’m on the road, one thing that I do is [use] all the candles I have in my home, in my dressing room. So it doesn’t matter where it is that I am in the world, I don’t forget home.”
VIBE Viva sat down with the burgeoning superstar to touch on the exhibits, what it means to be Latina, her holidays plans, Empire, and more.
VIBE Viva: What is a particular scent that triggers a favorite memory or a holiday memory?
Becky G: One thing in our home, each room has its own little thing going on. My mom loves lavender and my parent’s room is white and lavender, so they have a [smell of] vanilla and lavender going on in there. And in our living room, we like berry-type scents because it’s very homey. And that’s one thing when people walk into our home there like, ‘Oh are you baking? It smells so good in here.’ And I’m like, ‘Nope, that’s just candles.’
What are your holiday plans?
I wanted to get away with my family this Thanksgiving. I’m the oldest of four. I’m Mexican, there’s a lot of us. I have two younger brothers and a little sister. And then my parents are high school sweethearts so they’re super young and down. The youngest is twelve and I’m 18 turning 19, and then my parents are in their mid-thirties. So we’re all at this age where we can all understand each other. I was like we gotta get away this Thanksgiving.
I don’t want to deal with the stress of inviting everybody – who is coming over, what times are they coming over? I was like let’s go to Vegas. So we’re going to to go to Vegas for Thanksgiving. And then I’ll be home for Christmas this year, which is awesome. It’s a really big deal in my family. That’s my mom’s favorite holiday season. We do lots of little posadas, so we’ll make tamales together, we’ll cook pozole. The girls will all come over and we’ll cook together, which is really fun. What I love the most about the holidays is on Christmas Eve, all of us – I’m one of nineteen grandchildren on my mom’s side, one of fifteen on my dad’s – we’ll all get together at someone’s house and before we open presents, we all go in a circle and we all talk about our highs and lows of that year and what we’re most thankful for and what’s impacted our lives. And everybody always ends up crying, because there’s a lot to catch up with. It’s very therapeutic.
What does it mean to be Latina?
It means a lot to me to be Latina. I think our culture is very beautiful. I think our language is very beautiful. I think we’re very passionate people. We love to love and that’s very beautiful. But it’s also very sucky sometimes because when it comes to my love life, I’m always like ehh this sucks, because not a lot of people have the same in common.
We’re feisty too. I think that it’s definitely very beneficial in the career choice that I decided to take on because I’m very intent with the way I was raised and how that’s impacted my life now and how it’s inspired me. I’m such an open book, so honest with my fans that I feel like that’s why I connect with so many people on so many different levels beyond just my music, because they can relate to me in different ways, whether its sharing the same memories or sharing the same likes or passions. And that’s just coming from a really big family and kind of being forced to be extra expressive and extra loud.
What do you think is your biggest takeaway from being on Empire?
To be vocal as an actress. Seeing Taraji really know her character inside and out and how she never ever stepped on anybody’s toes. She’s so respectful. It’s very collaborative because all the writers, all the directors are on set. And when we do run-throughs, she feels comfortable enough to say, ‘[No], Cookie wouldn’t say that. Cookie already said that. She would say this.’ It’s genius and she has no problem being vocal and I think that’s really important because of course for the directors, as actors we want to deliver what it is that they’re trying to capture on camera, but as the actors, we’re the ones who have to channels those feelings and really deliver whatever it is that we’re trying to get across. So seeing her take control was so inspiring and I’m like you get it girl! I learned a lot too from Terrance as well.
Talk a little bit about your future in acting.
I’ve always had a passion for [acting], since I was very young, but once I got signed as an artist to a record label, I kind of felt like I wanted to pursue music more and establish myself as an artist. Just to earn that respect as a songwriter and as a performer, and then when the time was right, trickle into the acting thing. I had always loved it, but I’m not trained. I think that kind of just comes with experience.
When Empire came along, it felt very natural, it felt like good timing, and I did it and I loved it and I learned a lot. And I told my agents, if you want to send auditions my way, you can. And actually when I was on tour and I was out for a month and a half, and it was back to back shows, every single day on the tour bus. Then [my agent] sends me this role, didn’t tell what it was for, and I’m like, ‘Girl I ain’t got time for this! I’m tired, I’m on a tour bus. I don’t feel like self-recording, reading these lines.’ And she’s like, ‘Becky, they won’t leave me alone.’ Like just record it and I’ll leave you alone. So a few days went by and I was like I’ll just record it. I sent it in and she’s like you know what this is for? I was like what? And it was Power Rangers. Then I was excited! And when I was reading the lines, it felt cool, like the character. Later, she tells me that the director saw it and that he loved it and he would like to meet me. It’s a casting process so they have to see other people for the same role. It was between me and a couple other people, but I got the call that I was going to be the yellow Power Ranger. It just felt so right. Yellow is my favorite color, so I was like this is meant to be. [Laughs] I’ll be filming at the top of next year in Vancouver, Canada.
What was your impression of the Museum of Feelings?
I think it was really incredible. I think it was really innovative and really an inspiring way to take feelings and show how scent overall can inspire a vibe. It really does inspire a vibe like when I’m in the studio, you got good candles, we’re gonna get a good vibe. On my rider, I have specific things that I wanted in my dressing room, which are the scents that I have at home, because you’re gone and that brings you back. It’s like a part of you. So, I felt very special being [here].
What legacy do you want to leave behind?
I just want to inspire people. I feel like it doesn’t matter how many people in the world you impact, as long as you’re impacting somebody and you’re inspiring someone. So whether it be five people, five hundred, five million, a bajillion people, that’s what I want to do, is make an impact on someone’s life.