Yahaloma Ramos [yahalomadiamond]
What do you do? What is your musical specialty?
I do lead and background vocals for the Hitsville show with Glenn Leonard, former lead singer of The Temptations. I also have a few solo projects of my own. Singing is my specialty.
Do you work alone or in a group? If in a group, who are the others you work with?
I work with an awesome group of people! Mr. Glenn Leonard former lead singer of The Temptations, Loren Berry (Drums and Leader), Chris Durso (Bass), Tommy LoBue (Guitar), Tanmart Selby (Keyboards), Carlton Flonnoy (Lead), Willie Shaw Jr. (Sax), Tessa O'Gilvie (Lead and Background), Robin Faiola Smith (Lead and Background), and me Yahaloma Ramos (Lead and Background).
Is there a web address where one can listen, see, or read some of your work?
Please list any awards, competitions, or other acknowledgments you would like to mention.
For a project I did with Walter Orange, lead singer and drummer for The Commodores, which went to the Grammy Nomination board 8 times. That was very exciting for me to say the least.
Please list discography in which you have participated.
"Who hears the Cries" in collaboration with The Commodores "Walter Clyde Orange" and Child Activist "Craig Deanto".
"Beautiful" my latest project
There are so many more, but these are the 2 that mean the most to me.
How did you begin making music? Who introduced you?
I began singing with my mother, Evelyn Thomas, when I was about 4 or so. My first show was in New York at club Majic.
What was your musical education?
Touring with my mother was my on the job training. We toured at least 6-8 months out of the year up until I was 16. I then focused on my education. I didn't get back into the business until I was about 20 years old.
When did you realise that making music could be a way of life for you?
I realized music would be my way of life when I was about 21. I am miserable without it, and with it I am very happy. It is a love story, if you will, romantic, and engaging.
What is your creative process?
When the words come there really is no timing for it, they just come. It's a combination of the right music, setting, and circumstances.
When do you have your most lucid moments, in the morning or night?
If you could see me right now, it's about midnight and my daughter has crashed in the hallway on the floor, lol, and here I am doing this interview with you right now. My creative juices flow when everyone else has gone to bed.
Have you ever awoken with a melody created from your dreams?
Yes. I remember very well some songs that I have awoke to and recorded. Those kind of songs don't happen to me often, but they do happen.
How do you know when a song is finished or needs no more changes?
Wow. Good question. I never think a song is done, lol. To me a song can be recorded over with different adlibs, flavors, mood, etc. There are so many different angles to one song, it can go on forever.
How did you discover your creative territory? How would you describe it?
When I was younger I used to write poetry all the time, and about everything. I am not sure at what age that began, but I am sure it started way before I knew how to write. It's indescribable really, it's a moment, a click, something that gets your mind racing a thousand miles a minute with words that are very hard to keep up with. It's a miracle that I can even think that fast and be intelligent at that speed.
What part of your job is your least favourite?
I don't have a least favorite part. I know you may think that is funny, but it's true. Every aspect of this job is intertwined within, and benefits the end result. Therefore I love every aspect of it, least to greatest and greatest to least it is all one.
How often do you practice?
6 days a week, no falter, no slack.
How do you feel right before going out on stage?
OM! I am nervous, hoping to get every note right, every dance step right, not to trip over my own two feet, and that the audience has a great time. There are so many things going through my mind right up till I hit the stage, OM. Just really nervous.
Which musicians or groups have been inspiring to your career?
Oh of course I would have to say my mother Evelyn Thomas, also Whitney Houston who I used to sing along with and still do. When I used to sing on South Beach I remember Lil Kim loved me and told me I sounded better than some top singers, and Eric Bennet complimented me as well. I remember the advise of Mary Mary and Vickie Winnans, and the encouragement of George Huff, Walter Orange, and so many more! They are all wonderful people.
List three songs that are key to your life.
What should be done to stop piracy?
I don't think anything can really be done about it. As long as people can get something for free, they will do whatever they can to get it. We can continue to try to bring out the honesty in people, and let them know how they are stealing, but until people become honest, piracy will exist.
What type of music do you detest?
Negative music without meaning. Music that brings a person down, promotes negativity or malice, evil deeds, wickedness, etc.
What time did you get up this morning?
How do you sell yourself? What has been your experience with record companies and representatives?
I sell myself as an honest person who is going after their dreams without compromise and doubt. I promote myself as a performer, writer, and singer who puts her all into everything she does, and I get back so much from the fans and from people who I have and do work with.
As far as record labels, I don't approach record companies anymore. When I first stated I approached them, but without a track record I was not an asset to them. Do I approach them now? No, no time to approach them, I am too busy touring and working on the show. My experience with them has been good, not to say they were never interested, but I just was not ready enough for them at that moment in time.
What other things have you done to make a living?
Worked at the Boys and Girls club, waitress, bus driver, karate instructor, vocal coach, deli clerk, McDonalds, Kentucky fried chicken, talent agencies, etc.
Have you ever played on the street or in the subway? How much did you collect each day?
I have never played on the street or subway.
Who would you play with, without a doubt?
Wow! There are so many! Ok Stevie Wonder, Alicia Keys, India.Ire, Jill Scott, Maxwell, Earth Wind and Fire, and Jennifer Hudson. I want to say Whitney Houston, if she were alive she would be my first pick.
What advice would you give to someone starting out in the business?
Never give up, perfect your craft, get some wear and tear performing, and keep plugging.