Janice Gaines Brings Something New to Gospel
Poised to bring in the next generation of urban contemporary Gospel music, Motown Gospel’s newest signee, Janice Gaines chats with Heed Magazine about working with Grammy Award winning producer LaShawn Daniels (Michael Jackson, Whitney Houston, Destiny’s Child & Tamar Braxton) on her debut album to be released later this year, being married to one of the leading curators of Gospel Music, E.J. Gaines, and who she could see herself working with in the near future!
Heed Magazine: Janice, how are you?
Janice Gaines: I am good, how are you?
HM: I am excellent, thank you! For our readers who may not know who you are, can you tell us a little about yourself?
JG: Totally! I am the daughter of a minister and a musician who promised myself that I’d never be neither! [Laughs] Turns out I am a combination of the two. I was terrified of following my dreams and instead I followed the world of academics. Being from Memphis, I thought everybody could sing, so what makes my gift so special. So, I became a 7th grade math teacher in the Bronx. Teaching those kids and trying to get them to behave, actually encouraged me to sing. I promised if they would behave, I would sing to them or they could teach me a dance and watch me try to do it. Most often they chose for me to sing and I would watch their responses, and think ‘wow, the Lord has given me a gift that can affect people outside of Memphis and outside of people who already love Him…”
HM: You are married to someone we probably know. [Laughs] Who is that Mrs. Gaines?
JG: That is E.J. Gaines, the love of my life! You know, E.J. and I have known each other since we were 15. He pursued me and I was terrified because we were best friends and I thought if we end up dating and it doesn’t work and we hate each other, I’ve lost a best friend. Eventually, I got the fact that you’re supposed to marry your best friend and that’s actually the best thing you can do!
HM: Can you tell us about your single and a little about your working relationship with LaShawn Daniels?
JG: Absolutely! The single is “Wait on You” and it’s actually the first single Lashawn and I recorded. He’s a producer extraordinaire. I knew of his work for years and then to see him on the “Tamar and Vince Show” working with Tamar, I would always think to myself, ‘man I would love to work with him someday’. Honestly, I was super nervous because it’s Lashawn Daniels who has worked with Tamar, Whitney Houston, and Brandy! Everyone that everybody knows and that any singer would appreciate! “Wait on You” really proved to us that we did what needed to be done and that we really do have musical chemistry!
HM: Who are some artists you’d like to collaborate with in the future?
JG: One of my obvious answers would be Erica Campbell! I would love to do something with Jonathan McReynolds. It would be totally fun to work with him. I wish Whitney Houston was still on earth that would be a dream. Brandy would be a dream!
HM: How do you balance being an artist and wife and find yourself able to give 100% in everything?
JG: Honestly, one day at a time. I do my quiet time with the Lord, and honestly if I keep that discipline I’m a much better wife, a much more grounded artist and a better friend, daughter, sister and all of those things. So, devotion and spending time with God. Also, I am recognizing that I have no control over any of this and I am trusting him day by day.
HM: What can we expect from your album?
JG: Oh yeah! You can expect some hot tracks because LaShawn Daniels produced them! [Laughs] We’re giving people a full meal, wrapped in a package of fun tracks.
HM: My final question, what do you take heed to?
JG: …That the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom. Even those things that I think I know, if they can’t be rooted in that then they’re probably nothing. So, I take heed to that very seriously!
HM: I’m so glad we finally got to chat and I’m looking forward to hearing more from you!
JG: Thank you so much, it was great to talk to you!
Check out Janice’s debut single, “Wait On You”
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