EXCLUSIVE: Interview With IMAJ

IMAJ is a multi-talented singer-songwriter, visual artist, actress and humanitarian from Miami Beach, FL. She is the daughter of a model mother and Philip Michael Thomas, the original Miami Vice star. Not only does she write her own music, she sings in 6 different languages, has published a fiction novel titled HARLOW and has also had her art displayed in the Dallas Museum of Art.

After the release of IMAJ’s second album “America’s Sweetheart,” we spoke about her popular single “Colorblind” and what she has in store for the future. Recently, we had the opportunity to catch up with this “Country Darling.”

Apart from having a variety of interests, she is also a humanitarian who continuously preaches on the importance of spreading peace and love. Check out our complete interview below:

What was your creative process like when you were creating both your debut album “IMAJ” and sophomore album “America’s Sweetheart”?

My creative process is kind of sporadic. I get my ideas from what’s going on in our world and that universal longing we all have to find some solidarity in lieu of the conflict. Sometimes it starts with lyrics and sometimes the songs came out of a chord progression or a melody. It’s a bit all over the map when you’re creating but the final message is all about peace and life.

What inspired you to write your single “Colorblind”?

I co-wrote “Colorblind” with my dear friends Ron Grimes, multi-platinum songwriter most known for his work with LeAnn Rimes and Jennifer Lynn, an amazing singer-songwriter also known for being on The Voice of Holland. Our inspiration for coming together in this was purveying a message of hope and the world coming together in peace regardless of who we are or where we come from.

Who are your biggest musical influences?

I love Dolly Parton, Johnny Cash, Willie Nelson, and Charlie Pride. Traditional country artists are my biggest influences.

If you had the opportunity to collaborate with someone right now in any of your varying interests, who would it be and what would you create?

Willie Nelson, Kacey Musgraves or Brad Paisley. We’d create a song that would inspire the world no matter where you fall on the political spectrum. Something to bring us back together.  

What was the defining moment in your life that inspired you to become a humanitarian?

Being born human. We’re all humanitarians when we believe in being kind to each other and using our lives to add a little more light to our world.

Tell me about your experience touring with Collin Raye.

It was a blast! He’s an amazing singer and person. We had so much fun touring.

Which one of your songs is your favorite, and which one was your favorite to put together? Why?

I’ll just have to choose one out of a bag because I love them all lol. I loved putting together “Different Kind of Country.” It mentions Dr. Martin Luther King and Rosa Parks. I’m not aware of country songs that point out civil rights activist/activism in this way. It’s a double entendre because it’s about both how I’m perceived as a different kind of a country artist and about our country changing for the better with the coming-of-age of the newest generations (mine and the next).

What was your experience performing at the Muhammad Ali Humanitarian Awards on September 20, 2018?

I adore KY! It’s always an honor to perform at the MAHAS. Being in a room full of people who are making a difference and supportive of those who’ve made great strides to, is just so inspiring and gives me hope.

You speak 6 languages?! That’s incredibly rare! How have you been able to utilize the languages you’ve learned with your music and everyday life?  

I sing in 6 different languages. I’ve always been able to pick up on dialects. Perhaps it has to do with being raised in Miami, which is a city that’s representative of so many countries around the world. So, I taught myself how to phonetically sing in 6 languages.

What will you be performing at the 2018 State Fair of Texas when you open for Hunter Hayes?

Super excited for this show! I’ll be performing a mix of songs from my albums as well as some other surprises. You’ll have to come out and see! :)

Are you expecting to release any new music soon?

Yes! An artist is always creating. I’ll be releasing new music and new art in other ways. Stay tuned.

FOLLOW IMAJ: Official Website | Instagram | Twitter

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Written by Evelin Mercedes

Journalism student interested in everything about music, entertainment & celebrities.
Twitter: @evelinjmercedes
Website: evelinjmercedes.com