I discovered Destined Universal when he co produced the tribute project, Legendary: A Decade of Stacie Orrico in October 2010. Since then, I have followed his career and I love the way he approaches his art and the kind of music he does.
Check out the interview I had with him for the release of his new single, Ghost.
HARRY: It has been close to two years since we heard from you. What have you been up to career wise?
DESTINED UNIVERSAL: To be honest, I have just been living life. There were a lot of things that went down the last time I released music that turned me off to the industry, so I took some time away to figure out if this was what I really wanted to do. Things just weren’t going the way they should have, and I just needed some time to consider all of my options. During my hiatus, I met some incredible people and learned some valuable lessons. After having a heart-to-heart with a friend, I realized that this what I was meant to do. I did some re-focusing and a little re-organizing, and was back in the studio writing and recording again.
HARRY: This new single that you released. Talk to us about it for a bit. What inspired it?
DESTINED UNIVERSAL: My new single “Ghost” is literally a love story most of us have gone through at least once or twice. It talks about seeming to be stuck in a cycle of relationships that never seem to go anywhere. No matter how many times you keep an open mind and stay positive, that moment you let down your guard is when they decide to break things off. The song actually takes on a double meaning. During the recording process for “Ghost,” I received news that my ex had passed away. So dealing with the loss of my first love contributed a whole new array of emotion and connection to the song. What started out as a venting session turned out to be an outlet to grieve and let go.
HARRY: Will the sound of the album follow the same pattern or are you experimenting with different sounds for the album?
DESTINED UNIVERSAL: I think that most of the album will be consistent with the “alterna-pop” sound that my producer and I have created. I think that I have found my niche for this particular chapter of my career. There will be songs that are a little more R&B and EDM influenced. We are also going to be experimenting with ambient sounds to capture more of a chill and tranquil energy. But I can confidently say that there will be a strong presence of alternative/pop music in this project. It coincides with how I feel personally and creatively at this time of my life.
HARRY: Who are the writers and producers you worked with on this new project?
DESTINED UNIVERSAL: I am currently working with Elliot “DJ Shaw-t” Cesta on the majority of the project. I’ve worked with him for the better half of my career. He also produced my last single “LoveLife.” I just click with his style and creativity. I’m very excited to see what becomes of some of the newer materials we are working on. There is also a producer by the name of J.D Beatz that I will be working with on a couple of tracks. As far as songwriting goes, I’ll be doing all of the writing, but I’m always open to collaborate with other writers. I have a friend named Cannon who is a dope writer. We’ve talked about writing a few tracks together. I guess you will just have to see what happens.
HARRY: Can you describe your creative process?
DESTINED UNIVERSAL: I usually spend a lot of time listening to music and reading old journals. Sometimes I have in-depth conversations with friends. That’s usually how ideas for songs pop into my mind. After that, I go through my library of tracks I have from producers I’ve worked with and see which one resonates with how I feel and how I want the song to feel. It’s a pretty simple process. I’m easily inspired so songs don’t take long to form in my mind.
HARRY: What are the challenges of being an Independent artiste in America?
DESTINED UNIVERSAL: Finances can definitely be a hassle. It’s a constant struggle trying to figure out how to support your dreams while keeping up with day-to-day, everyday life expenses. I think that is probably the biggest challenge. But if you are dedicated and willing to sacrifice, you’ll find a way to do both successfully.
HARRY: Are you currently working on any non-music projects?
DESTINED UNIVERSAL: Not currently. I have tons of ideas and concepts that I have on hold. But as for right now, the main concern is this project and promoting this single. But once the album is finished, definitely expect a lot of different things from me.
HARRY: Any plans or aspirations as regards your career this year?
DESTINED UNIVERSAL: My plans are to release this EP and finish the album. I have a few artists that are interested in having me write for them, which is really cool. Definitely want to do that. My biggest aspiration would be to travel out of the States this year. I want to see more of the world. That’s about it.
HARRY: What do you want the legacy of Destined Universal to be?
DESTINED UNIVERSAL: I want my legacy to be one of courage, strength, persistence, diligence, and success. I want people to listen to my music twenty years from now and love it just as much as I do. I want to heal broken hearts and teach important lessons in love and life in my music. I’d be completely satisfied if music didn’t work for me, but I still managed to change someone’s life or have a positive effect on them in some way.
HARRY: Final word for your fans
DESTINED UNIVERSAL: Thank you all for supporting me. This is only the beginning. We have a lot more work to do, but I appreciate everyone who has and continue to rock with Destined Universal. I am completely humbled and thankful.
Current Songs on your Playlist
My Current Top 10 includes:
- Afraid – The Neighborhood
- Attracting Flies – AlunaGeorge
- Caught Up In The Rapture (Anita Baker Cover) – JoJo
- Valkyrie (Art of War Remix) – Dawn Richard ft. JoJo & Deonte (of MDMA)
- Follow You Down – Zedd ft. Bright Lights
- Operate – ASTR
- Motel Pool – Travis Garland
- The Worst – Jhene Aiko
- Jealous – Beyonce
- Grow Up – Paramore
TV Series you hooked on
I just got hooked onto American Horror Story. That is the only show I’ll go out of my way to watch on television for. I’m hardly home to watch anything really.
Last movie you saw
Gravity. It wasn’t half bad actually. A little emotionally draining having to watch Sandra Bullock stuck in space for that long. Almost felt like I was there with her!
Apple juice or Soda
Not big on soda, so apple juice.
I’m a huge Pretty Little Liars fan actually. I get grief on it a lot. I have been horrible with keeping up with this season, but I’m looking to change that soon.
Listen to Ghost, the debut single off of his forthcoming album, Redemption.