With Love & Hip Hop Atlanta returning to our television screens next month, we’re excited to see what new has been taking place in each of the cast members lives outside of what we can obviously figure out on social media. As for Ms. Karlie Redd, we were able to get a sneak peak into her world before the Season 7 premiere.
Outside of Love & Hip Hop, Karlie Redd is maintaining multiple businesses including her Monde of Merci boutique in Northpoint Mall, as well as an online extension of that boutique, a transportation company as her newest business venture, and her recurring role on Bounce TV’s popular sitcom, Saints & Sinners. As if each of those roles don’t demand enough of her time, Karlie is back pursuing music with one of the best producers in the game. We dug a little deeper and caught up with Karlie Redd to discuss her collaboration with Sean Garrett “The Pen”, when and what to expect with her new music, and her original goals when being casted for Love & Hip Hop versus the goals she now has for her career seven seasons later.
Tell us what exactly a day in the life of Karlie Redd looks like?
On those days I don’t have to film Love & Hip Hop or Saints & Sinners, I’m getting dressed & make up and hair is coming to my house. I’m running to my store to make sure everything is good in that aspect. Then I’m either going to the recording studio like I’m about to go to the studio right now to finish up a record. I barely go out but tonight I have a booking in Georgia so me going out depends on if I’m booked for an appearance or not. But, when I have to film I’m up all night studying my lines for Saints & Sinners. I even find myself talking to myself and replaying my lines in my sleep. If it’s a Love & Hip Hop situation I have to make sure my clothes are on point.
People might not know but you’ve been acting for awhile now. I know you were for sure on Scream Queens and now Saints & Sinners. Where does your passion lie more — in acting or in the music?
They’re both my passion because I put 100% of my hustle into everything I do. Don’t do it if you’re not going to give it 100% of your passion. With my acting I’ve been taking classes since I was a kid. Since my mom brought me back from Trinidad to New York, I went to Harlem School of the Arts. I went to Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater. I took classes in college. I took classes with Bobbie Chance, and I still take classes because I take my craft very seriously. I’m tired of people saying, “Oh she lucked up with that opportunity”. No I worked hard for this opportunity. I got this opportunity because I’ve put in the work to perfect my craft. Right now I’m even taking classes with Dwayne Battle.
Even with my music, I’m always taking classes like piano classes. If you’re going to do something put your wholehearted passion into it. Don’t half a** bullsh*t. Don’t be the type of person who wakes up today and says, “Oh, I’m going to be a rapper”. No, I’ve been doing this for years. People that know me know that I’ve been doing music for years. People know I did Jamaican music in the past. I didn’t just wake up and start filming Love & Hip Hop and start doing music then.
What’s different from the Karlie pursuing music in the past versus the Karlie pursuing music now?
I now have a platform and the industry is different. You can put a song out on Instagram and if the song is hot it’s hot. Mona [Scott-Young] has given people that have been doing music for a long time a platform where we can now really do our thing.
I’m really finally giving my alter ego in my music. I’m finally actually being me and talking that shit and walking that walk. I’m taking what I really go through in my everyday life and speaking on it in my music, or just letting the music speak for me per say.
I saw your Instagram post with you in the studio with Sean Garrett. How did you two connect and start working together?
Sean [Garrett] heard one of my records at one of my homegirl’s house and was like, “Wait a minute. This kind of fire. This shit is HOT!” I was like “Thank you!”, and he was like “Yes, I’m going to start working with you.”
Sean [Garrett] has worked with some of the best. I know he’s worked with Beyonce, Nicki Minaj, Ciara, Britney Spears, and I know he know’s a lot about the industry. Was he able to give you any valuable advice that you’ll be able to take with you forever throughout your career?
I’m very proud of Sean and all of his accomplishments and I don’t take working with Sean lightly at all. Sean has 52 No.1 records. I know there’s so much I can learn from him. I pay close attention when I’m working with Sean. I see how he works and I take heed to everything he says and I’m just blessed to have this opportunity to work so closely with him.
Are we expecting a mixtape or an album with the upcoming project?
I’m going to put out some singles because it’s a single game right now. So that’s what’s first with me.
What was your ultimate plan or goal when you were initially auditioning for Love & Hip Hop? After actually being casted and actually being on the show for 6 years now, has that goal changed? If so, what has it changed to?
A lot has changed but I’m just blessed to be in the position that I am in. I’m just a hustler at the end of the day so I just take whatever platform I get and whatever I’m doing and make a dollar out of fifteen cents. Before I got on Love & Hip Hop I was just like I’m here to make some money to live my life. But then I took the situation and said I’m going to go all the f*ckin’ way. Most people just wanted to get some bookings and be good. I was like no. I’ll always take a little piece of nothing and turn it into something bigger. I’m a straight up and down hustler.
What’s the biggest misconception people have about you based off what they see on Love & Hip Hop?
Of course, that I’m messy which I don’t even care what they say because I’m getting a check. People can say whatever they want because if I always cared about what people think then I will never live my life. I’m going to keep taking what I have and blessing other people with it.
How do you manage to maintain multiple businesses at once and where do you find the motivation to keep going?
I motivate myself to do whatever it is I need to do. If you really want to be successful in life you have to be your own motivation first and everything else will fall into place. No one will care about your money, your business, or your situation more than you so that’s why I started something of my own. Second, I have a great team. You have to have a great team that is ready to hustle 24/7 all around the clock. It’s about staying prayed up and being a hustler on your own first, because at the end of the day these are your businesses. If you’re not hustling no one else is going to hustle either.