Here’s the Advice Quincy Jones & Mary Mary Gave to Chloe Bailey
Chlöe Bailey is an R&B diva in her own right. The 24-year-old Atlanta native has carved out her own lane as she discovers her sound outside of Chlöe x Halle, her duo with equally musical genius sister Halle Bailey.
But that doesn’t mean the superstar — with music approval from the likes of Beyoncé — doesn’t need guidance to navigate an industry that has become obsessed with social media crazes from TikTok, Instagram and Twitter.
At the New Yorker Festival on Saturday (Oct. 8), Chlöe, who dazzled in a long-sleeve crystal-embedded dress, chatted with journalist Lauren Michele Jackson after an intimate but rocking performance that had the crowd on their feet, giving a standing ovation.
During the conversation, Jackson asked Chlöe how social media, especially TikTok, affects the creative process of musicians. Chlöe’s hit single “Have Mercy,” which became a major TikTok dance challenge, had the songstress thinking just how much social media affects artists going deeper within themselves during the music-making process.
“Well, before your song’s gonna pop off on TikTok, you know, there was YouTube and the radio and all that stuff,” said Chlöe.
“So no matter which generation we’re in, there’s always something that you want your music to be like, lived on, right? So I think when we program our minds to think about being number one and winning these awards when you’re creating, it suffocates you, and it stifles the process,” Chlöe continued.
With that in mind, Chlöe remembered a quote that legendary producer Quincy Jones — whose decades of hitmaking include credits like the Grammy Award-winning Michael Jackson‘s Thriller — told her.
“He told my sister and I, he said, ‘The second money enters the creative process, God walks out the room,'” Chlöe said.
“That resonated with me because if I’m thinking about all of the things that I’m expecting to get from what I’m about to create, then I’ve already stopped the process right then and there,” Chlöe continued.
“And there’s been so many times where I’ve gotten in my head because yes, you have to have songs or popping singles or whatever, that’s great, but you can’t let it rule you, and you can’t let it control you,” she said. “And now I think why I have been creating so freely and openly right now; it’s because I have a project I’m proud of and have done.”
That’s not all. During one of Chlöe x Halle’s performances, Chlöe was getting major butterflies, while Halle seemed calmed and prepared. However, gospel singers Mary Mary — known for hit singles such as “God in Me,” “Shackles” and “Yesterday” — noticed the duo before they hit the stage, and that’s when Mary Mary gave the two some musical advice they couldn’t forget.
“They turned to us and said, ‘Don’t go out there trying to sing and prove yourself to anyone,” she recalled. “Sing for God, sing to God, and everything else will fall into place.'”
“And I think that is such incredible advice for me when it comes to performing because, yes, when I’m on stage, I want everybody to like me. Yes, I want them to sing the songs. I want them to be engaged and involved, and anytime there’s crowd participation, I want them to participate, but sometimes life doesn’t work out that way,” Chlöe said. “So at least I have to be proud of the passion and the heart that I put out on that stage, and almost say thanks with my gift as I’m using it at that moment.”
The crowd applauded Chlöe for speaking eloquently about her craft. As far as a new single and album, fans will just have to wait for that news.