You may know LeToya Luckett as an original member of Destiny’s Child, but she’s a multi-faceted star in her own right. The talented singer, actress and business owner joined the Single Ladies cast this season, bringing life to the fierce breed of music executives she knows all too well. In addition to playing Felicia Price, LeToya is contributing new music to the show’s third season while working on her third solo album. New single “Don’t Make Me Wait” (featured in the clip above) debuts on tonight’s all-new episode.
We spoke with the Houston native about what it’s like to hear your music on TV, emerging as a solo artist and dancing to Pharrell.
What was it like to join that cast?
LeToya Luckett: It has been a great experience. I’ve enjoyed my role as Felicia. She’s so much fun to play and I’ve learned a lot myself just playing her. I’m definitely blessed to be a part of this and I’m blessed to have a network that’s supportive of my music as well. And them wanting to adopt this song “Don’t Make Me Wait” for this episode just makes me smile on the inside. I love it.
Can you relate to the character Felicia at all or is she someone that is familiar to you at all in the music industry?
There are probably a lot of execs that carry themselves in the way that Felicia does. I feel like I can definitely relate to her as a woman. One: having my own company. I had my own boutique for years called Lady Elle. And just going through the ins and outs of that–business being great, business being bad, I was also working with my mom–so having to figure that relationship out. Two: I love Felicia’s confidence. I love her fashion sense: very simple, classy, elegant chic if you will. I love that she wears black. She doesn’t hold her tongue for anybody, and I love how she doesn’t care about people’s opinion. I think a lot of people might see her as this cold, evil person, but I wanted to be very careful in the way I played her that people didn’t hate her, but they could learn from her and they could laugh with her. You know, I threw a little comedy in there as well. I just wanted her to have her own identity. Hopefully I accomplished that.
How did you react when you heard your song was going to be featured in tonight’s episode?
Well I made the song with Single Ladies in mind. I was like, “Oh man, I can just only imagine a scene and somebody there in the club or one of the characters spotting this guy and she wants to speak to him and she’s too shy.” So she’s saying, “You know, he needs to come over here and see me.” Because I know, personally, I’m a very shy girl—very, very, very, very shy. And my dream came true.
Do you have any favorite musical moments from other television shows or movies?
I was watching Despicable Me 2 and I couldn’t remember [the new Pharrell song “Happy”], but one of the scenes made me feel great on the inside. Turns out, it was that song, which is now one of my favorite songs. So I love how music can just do something for a scene. And it just does something for me on the inside.
Do you think your music has changed between your earlier albums or even before with Destiny’s Child?
Oh yeah, a great deal. I’m coming into my own. I’ve definitely grown as an artist. I’ve grown as a woman through different life experiences. I’m more open. I used to play it really, really safe—especially with my first album—because One: it was a surprise to me that I was even doing an album. I was like, “What? Solo artist? I could never be a solo artist.” So now to be doing that and be on my third album? You couldn’t have told the old LeToya that she would be on her third album and have this awesome life in between.
Now for this album you’re working with Dre Harris, Harmony Samuels and Andrea Martin. Who’s been the most influential in terms of collaboration?
I think they all have. I love Andrea. Her energy is crazy. She’s always moving and ready; she’s awesome. Working with Dre Harris and Joe Black, in R&B now, you can’t really touch them. They work with the Jill Scotts. They work with so many great people so to have this opportunity it’s awesome.
Do you have any studio rituals while you’re recording?
I love snacks. I love Gummy bears. They must always be present. Nice candle doesn’t hurt.
A scented candle?
Yeah. And I always say a prayer right before I start singing to put myself in that peaceful moment.
Is there anything you do to procrastinate or give yourself a break while you’re in the studio?
I talk a lot. I talk and laugh a whole lot.
Why did you want to document your studio time with your web series?
The web series was something I didn’t plan on having. It just started off as one of my friends following me around with the camera when I was doing a show in Las Vegas. Once she pieced it together afterward and did the editing, I was like, “Oh my god, this could be cool. My fans will want to know what I am doing right now. Let me just kind of like figure this out.” And people ended up loving it. And I think it allows people to connect with me and really see me and my whole crazy personality and my family and friends and everybody involved. It’s not the easiest thing to do all the time because I do it myself. I do all the editing, I do everything.
Between music, acting, editing and the boutique, you have so many different endeavors going on right now. Since we’re still in the beginning of the year, what’s one thing you want to accomplish by the end of 2014?
Good question. Hopefully we will be filming Single Ladies again. You want one thing? Just one?
If you have a couple, go for it.
I just want to take more chances. I want to surprise myself and just leap. And do something that I was probably terrified of doing in 2013–be a little uncomfortable. There’s nothing wrong with that; growth is in that. So I just want to grow more.
Catch LeToya’s new song “Don’t Make Me Wait” on tonight’s all-new episode of Single Ladies at 9/8 C.
[Photo Credit: VH1]