Debuting her highly anticipated freshman project, Frankie Parker is excited about her new-found reception as one of Chicago’s premier R&B singers/songwriters. With such songs as, “Divine Destiny”, “Divorce Party”, and “Hot Pot of Grits”, Frankie Parker combines vulnerability, life lessons, and most importantly love to create “Breezy”. Her currently released single, “Peace, Love, and Wine” was rotated on Chicago’s WVAZ 102.7 FM radio station and has received rave accolades. “This is a hit- an ultimate steppers’ cut”, says V103’s DJ Eric E.T. Taylor. Frankie Parker’s mature lyrics and derivatively vintage voice serves as a promising concoction for a music career full of success and longevity.

“Breezy” is a melodic diary that depicts the emotional changes one faces when dealing with marriage and its challenges. She combines her love for the old school R&B, hip-hop, and spoken word to create a fresh, yet familiar sound. Frankie Parker patterns this musically, semi-biographical journey after one of her favorite albums, entitled, “Here My Dear”, written by Marvin Gaye. “I consider my album to be the long-awaited response to “Hear My Dear”. Maybe when people listen to my project, it will prompt them to take a listen to what I consider as Marvin’s ‘hidden gem’”. Writing nine out of the ten songs on the “Breezy” project, Frankie paints vivid pictures, giving the listener an opportunity to envision themselves as the various characters written in each song. “Hot Pot of Grits”, has brought smiles to women and fear to men. After listening to “Grits”, DJ Neva from New Jersey City, New Jersey stated that “Grits” has, “Actual lyrics that actually have significance. Thank you.” DJ Chuckfresh from Des Moines, Iowa described the single as “smooth and also funny”. “Hot Pot of Grits” was voted as the 2010 number one single for independent artists on the “Marvell Gable Radio Show”. “Breezy” is scheduled to be released during the first quarter of 2012.

Although Frankie Parker is a talented songwriter, she has a natural niche for captivating her audience through her stage performances. Since the age of 4, she has been performing in front of a crowd. She’s performed at the House of Blues, The Grand Ole’ Opry, Close Up II, Northern Illinois University, The Green Dolphin, Little Black Pearl and many other Chicagoland venues. She’s opened for Montel Jordan, Shai, rapper Sweet Juices, the Stellar Awards, and others. In 2011, she took first prize at the Femme Fatale M.C. Music Competition. She creates an experience that allows the viewer to feel every note she sings. “Her show was awesome. She did her [thing] [for sure]…I’m feelin’ this joint”, says Philadelphia’s own DJ Russ.

Frankie Parker’s musical odyssey began at an early age. According to her parents, as a toddler, she taught herself how to change the albums on the turntable. At 5, she recorded her first album with a local community choir. After being involved with the school chorus, band, and several community choirs, she decided to pursue a degree in vocal performance at Columbia College- Chicago. Although she has yet to complete her education, she has applied all that she’s learned to her craft. Frankie has also trained at A&A Music Academy, studying vocal performance there, as well.

Frankie Parker is expected to have a large impact on the urban music scene in Chicago, and eventually the world. She is dedicated to perfecting her craft and continuing to write songs with substance and soul. When asked where she sees herself in five years, she confidently says, “I see myself on tour, with my band, and creating music for myself and others…You know, living the good life!”

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Mommyhood and Music: Finding the Balance

Being a part of the music industry requires a lot of dedication, discipline, and sacrifice. To me the hardest contribution is sacrifice- especially when it comes to my family. Although I am still fresh to the game, I've already had moments where I've questioned, "Am I a good wife? Am I a good mother?" The latter is most important to me because I only get one chance and one moment to be the perfect mom.
I know what you're thinking: "There's no such thing as a perfect mom". However, my definition of a perfect mom is a woman who is present in her child's life and supporting at the most important aspects of his daily activities (i.e. cooking, spending quality time, taking him to school, tending to him when he's ill). Sometimes, I am unable to do those things. My life gets pretty hectic, and the normal life is sounds like a dream. I always knew that it would be this way if I chose to continue working on my music after having a child.
Knowing that my time would be limited, I decided that I would spend the first two years of my son's life with him at home. I stopped working both jobs for a while to be with him. Everyday, we spent the day together- just the two of us. I cooked him breakfast everyday, played with him, read to him, and watched him discover his world. I sacrificed (there's that word again.. lol), money, gigs, and sometimes peace of mind to ensure that my son knew that I loved him. Two years is such a small piece of his lifetime, but the first two years of a child's life is most important to their growth and development. I felt proud and blessed to have that time with him. Now that he's in school, I see the outcome of those first two years. His mental growth is similar to that of a wildflower. Hell, he's already learned what an octagon looks like! lol
Learning to balance music and motherhood is still a work in progress. I try to spend as much time with him as I can on my off days. He gets all of my attention. I try to change as many diapers as possible. I hug and kiss him until he's tired of me touching him! I make sure that we talk when we're in the car, hitting the streets together. I listen to music with him whenever I can (he's a natural). Most importantly, he goes to church with me almost every Sunday. I guess I'm not such a bad mom after all.
I know that one day, I will be away from him- sometimes hundreds of miles away. I know that there may a point when I may miss a recital or a school dance. I know that I may not be here to see him go on his first date. But in the end, I want him to always know that I love him, and I do this for him. Every note I sing and every song I write is all done for him and his well-being. I will never be 'Mommy Dearest' (not Joan Crawford's, but I will be the very best mom I can be for my son and our lifestyle.

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