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BRIA / “IF I’M NOT WORKING, I’M NOTHING”

October 6, 2020

Read the full interview on Flaunt.com!

Bria is your new favorite singer-songwriter, who is only 18 years old and on her way to greatness. Coming from a dance background, she’s a true jack of all trades. Having done everything from dancing to modeling to acting, her biggest passion lies in the music — the one place she can be creating and never get sick of it.

With an Italian background and growing up in Arizona, Bria prides herself on her work ethic, giving everything and anything she does 100%. On top of juggling a jam-packed schedule on the daily, she’s established and grown her own online and social media presence, capitalizing off apps such as TikTok, Instagram, and OnlyFans. And still, she manages to make time and prioritize her first love: singing.

Boasting 128K followers on Instagram alone, Bria has already walked in New York Fashion Week and even opened for top social media tours such as Boys of Summer and Lights Out! Most recently, she released her new spicy visual for “Bad Habit,” proving her growth and evolution since her debut single “Your Time” a few years back.

At the end of the day, she hopes to inspire other females to be confident with themselves, and that women can excel just like the men. Flaunt caught up with Bria at the Kandypens house in Los Angeles, who was decked out in sleek all-white. Read below as we discuss her upbringing,

Talk about your Italian roots, and growing up in Arizona.

I grew up eating a ton of pasta, literally every time. We had sauce on Sundays. I grew up with 2 brothers, one’s a half-brother because my dad was married before my mom. We’re getting closer, getting older. I have a huge family, a family of 20! It’s a lot because Italians are so loud. It’s funny, I’d rather hang out with them than friends. It’s really weird. I’ll tell my friends I’m going to hang out with my cousins, they’re like “what?”

That’s how I am, I got a dog and don’t want to go anywhere.

Yeah, you don’t want to go anywhere. You’re chillin’. That’s exactly how I am. Growing up dancing, there’s a lot of music around me. My mom would always play Pussycat Dolls, Gwen Stefani, Black Eyed Peas, all the OGs. I remember I was singing one day, “The Climb” by Miley Cyrus, in the women’s bathroom – I was 8 or 9 – when my mom called my dad like, “I think Bri can sing!” Obviously, I’m like huh? [laughs] From there, we got into auditioning and everything out here. It’s been crazy, a wild ride.

What was the turning point where you realized you could do this for a living?

I went on an audition about 2 years ago. It was at my modeling agency, but it was for acting. That’s how I found my manager, we had clicked. I said, “I don’t really know what I want to do, I know I want to be in the industry though.” So we wrote my first song. My cousin’s a songwriter, he had a demo and I said, “I really want to sing this.” We re-did it, that’s when I knew this is what I want to do my whole life.

How’s that independent grind been? 

It works for me, that’s just my personality. I like to do what I want to do, and when I want to do it. It’s good to have people who support you doing this, but not bombarding you with everything.

What made you keep your name to just Bria?

My name is Brianna, only a couple of people know that. My middle name is Michelle. When we were starting out, we thought it was too long. My best friend had always called me Bria. She called me one day like, “you should change your name to that.” I’m like, “hold on… hold up!” We talked to everyone about it. I like how short it is, it sounds so fly! It’s short and simple, so okay, I’m Bria.

You just released your new single “Bad Habit,” how are you feeling? 

I’m so excited! It’s my favorite song that I’ve ever done. I was going through a situation with a boy, of course. I was telling my songwriter about him, we said, “We should put this in the music” because I know I’m not the only girl going through the situation. I like to write what other people can feel, I write for them. It turned out exactly how I wanted it, and more. I remember I had this melody in my head. I went to my producers and said, “This is what we need. We can’t half-ass this. It needs to be good and this is how we need to do it or we can’t put it out.” It turned out so good, I’m so proud of it.

Talk about just pairing it with the visual too. 

It just came out. As soon as I turned 18, we needed to raise the bar. Enough of this Disney stuff, we need to open our eyes to the real world. That’s me though. I had to put on an act because I wasn’t 18 yet. I’m very into LEDs and sensual stuff, the vibes. The melody I had in my head, the video needed to be dark. It needed to be personal. I didn’t want any party scenes, just want me and this guy. The director came up with this idea of a Bonnie and Clyde type of vibe, it turned out so good.

Who’s the guy in the visual? 

That’s my friend Luke. That day was really stressful. Of course, things didn’t go as planned, but Luke came through and it turned out better than I ever expected. I wanted it to be dark and sensual; The director came up with this really cool Bonnie and Clyde idea. It turned out so good! I seduce this man then take the money. It’s a really cool idea to add another meaning to the song, so you can interpret it whatever way you want.

Who’s idea was it to drug the man? 

It was mine. I don’t do drugs. Stay away from drugs kids, but it had to be done.

3 things you need in the studio?

Unsweetened black iced tea. I know it’s crazy because everyone likes hot tea. It has to be iced, no sugar. That’s like my water. I don’t drink water, which is so bad.

That’s a lot of caffeine! 

It’s so much caffeine, it’s really not okay. If I don’t have iced tea, I have a headache all day. Gum, I’m addicted to gum. It can’t be spearmint, has to be thick. Right now, I’m chewing Trident. It’s peppermint, the big chunks. And probably my friends. I really like it when I have people in there who match my vibe and my energy. I work better.

How much of a role did TikTok play in your career? 

A lot. Starting out, I wasn’t even doing social media. I found out I need to get on this stuff because that’s what everyone’s doing right now. I needed to do this. I wasn’t expecting it to be this much work. I was like, “Dang, I really have to make all these videos. Post them and like, they have to be creative or else they won’t do good?”, you know. So it was a lot more than I was expecting, but it’s really fun.

Favorite song to dance to on TikTok?

That’s really hard. There was a dance trend to “Buttons” by the PussyCat Dolls.

Are they still making music?

They are! I was on set with them. They put out a new song, so I went and hung out with them, crazy because they’re my idols growing up. It was crazy, nothing I’d ever been a part of before. My manager called me like, “you’re gonna be on set with Pussycat Dolls,” I said no way! It was crazy, so many people involved. It was a movie.

What were your interactions with them? I think I met one of them. 

They’re super sweet girls. I’d made TikToks with all of them. I talked to Nicole for a little bit, we took pics. They’re normal girls. We had real conversations and connected on another level, it was so chill.

What does hard work mean to you? It’s huge for me.

Honestly, if I’m not working, I’m nothing. Growing up in a dance studio since I was 3, I’d be at dance every day. It’s so important to me. If you’re not working hard for it, then what’s the point? You don’t want it bad enough, that’s how I feel about it.

How often are you working versus not? 

It’s definitely slowed down since COVID. I’m having withdrawals. [laughs] I just got back from the studio. I’m doing social media every day. Right now I’m working on modeling and acting again, which is exciting. Ultimately, singing is #1.

How was collaborating with Maxso on “Alive”?

It was so cool. He’s really cool, such good energy. We were mutuals from the same friend group, but we’d never gotten close. I’d heard his stuff, he’s so talented. I knew I wanted a verse for someone else in the song, he came to mind. I knew he’d fit in so good, the vibe with him. He’s so grounded, so hard-working, so passionate about what he does, which is totally me. I needed him on this song right then. We hit him up, he said “yes, I’m so down.” He freestyled that night. I’m like, “Okay great, thanks! You’re the best!”

Being only 18, what do you like to do for fun?

When I’m home, I like to go out with my friends and do normal teenage stuff. Go to the movies, parties, just chillin’.

I love the movies!

Dude, the movie theatre popcorn hits so different! [laughs]

Talk about your love for fashion as well. How would you describe it? 

Oh my gosh, crazy story. I’m usually super laidback with my fashion. I got to walk in New York Fashion Week, literally such a dream. I wasn’t modeling at the time. I modeled when I was younger, but we were focusing on singing. The opportunity came up, I had no idea what I was doing. I went with the flow. After being in that scene, I developed such a passion for everything in fashion and style. Now, I’m so extra with everything I do. It’s definitely been since Fashion Week, it changed me. [laughs]

Were you nervous? 

I was nervous. I was so used to being on stage but what if I fall? That’s in the back of my head the whole time. Everything was good, it went so smooth.

How was opening for social media tours, Boys of Summer and Lights Out? 

It was crazy, I hadn’t been in that. Boys of Summer was my first tour, I was new to that whole scene. I fell in love with touring. We’re actually supposed to tour this year, but we couldn’t because of COVID. We toured Europe… I had no idea I’d be doing this. I was 16 at the time. I’m 16 and going on tour? So surreal.

How’d that feel?

It was more adrenaline. I was more excited-nervous because it was new to me, not so much, “I’m going to mess up.”

Goals for yourself at this point in your career?

Getting into modeling again, I really want to walk for Victoria’s Secret. Such a crazy long shot, but if you work for it… I really want to go on tour independently, that’s my #1 goal right now. Keep putting out music and growing, then touring.

When the world opens back up?

I know, I haven’t traveled in forever. It’s so different because I used to be traveling all the time.

Have you picked up any new hobbies during quarantine? 

I’ve watched a bunch of movies. I started sketching. It was never a thing until I had nothing to do all day. I got canvases and started drawing, it’s actually really dope.

Do you have a dog? 

I have 3. I have 2 tiny ones, then I have a big golden lab. He’s very much overweight, it’s a lot to handle but he’s the sweetest thing ever.

Anything else you want to let us know?

Shout out to all the supporters, I’d be nothing, literally. I’m so motivated, but they keep me grounded.

What is it about you that your fans love you for? 

I try to be as real as possible with them. Social media, you can fake almost anything. Don’t believe anything you see, nothing is true. I try to help them through whatever and connect with each one, not brush them off. I’m doing everything because of them, got to.

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