Jade Novah is an artist to keep your eyes on! She performed during the week of the 55th Annual GRAMMY Awards in February, has amassed millions of YouTube views of her renditions of the lastest hits and has mainstream magazines and other stars such as Rolling Stone, Vibe Vixen, Ryan Seacreast and Chris Brown raving about the Cleveland Native. She has no plans of slowing down anytime soon. Black Fitness Today had the privilege of chatting with Jade Novah about how she balances her career with living a healthy lifestyle.
First, we want to say congratulations on winning the Hitlab Emerging Talent Competition! You were selected to perform at GRAMMY Week – that was great! What was that experience like? What was it like walking on the red carpet and performing?
JN: It was really an amazing opportunity to get a chance to network and be around other like-minded people. It was really motivating and a lot of great relationships were just birthed from being there that week. The best way to sum it up was ‘surreal,’ but I definitely took advantage of that opportunity and met a lot of amazing people and I’m just really grateful for that experience.
BFT: So how would you describe your musical style? We saw that your mission is to fuse the worlds of Broadway and R&B. What does that new world sound like?
JN: I grew up listening to everything; my father was in a rock band and he exposed my sisters and I to a wide range of music. My mother was really into Broadway and show tunes so it’s a mixture of all those influences. I love Disney, Broadway, Barbra Streisand, Judy Garland, Julie Andrews, Queen, Michael Jackson, and then of course growing up in the 90’s, you know the R&B music of that time, and just using all those together.
BFT: You’ve been doing your thing for a while. When did you start singing and acting and what motivated you to pursue this as a career?
JN: I’ve been doing music and acting for as long as I can remember. I’m the baby of the family so I was always kind of forced to be the free entertainment for my sisters [laughs], but you know, I always loved music and I’ve been pursuing this since I was a little girl. Nothing really fulfills me the way music does or being on the stage does and just entertaining, so basically my passion for what I do is my motivation.
BFT: Keyonce?! [Laughs] What was the motivation behind your spoof of Beyoncé? That was hilarious! It’s cool to see that you have a sense of humor.
JN: [Laughs] Thank you! I love doing impersonations, that’s actually going to be incorporated on my upcoming album as well. I’ve always been doing impersonations, but Keyonce kind of came about when I was doing my album ‘In Search of Me’ because it includes of skits and narratives and such, so she was a character that was created and I decided to bring her to life, and like you said, give people the opportunity to see that side of myself and the fun aspect. So yeah she just kind of happened. But I’m definitely a huge Beyoncé fan, I mean you kind of have to be to imitate her. [Laughs]
BFT: So in your cover of Rihanna’s ‘Diamonds’ We see you getting your run on! What type of workouts do you currently do, and then to ad to that, how do you adjust when you’re ripping and running and traveling?
JN: [Laughs] Wow, that’s really funny… the running in Diamonds. I love doing cardio actually…I’m kind of a little obsessive about it [Laughs] but right now I live in Atlanta and the pollen down here is so horrible and my allergies are so horrible in the spring time, so when I want to get a good run in I have to get on the treadmill. But I absolutely love it because it gives me clarity and peace. But lately, I’ve been doing a lot more weight training and trying to focus on my lower body, but I love classes like Zumba, Yoga and body sculpting.
When I was touring it was actually easy to workout because all of the hotels have gyms, but the hardest part about being on the road is mainly the food [laughs] because there’s not a lot of great choices and then being around a lot of people who are not necessarily making the same choices that you are [making] makes it a little easier to give into the temptation of eating bad.
I think it’s actually difficult as well with working weird hours, because when you’re in the studio it’s not like a regular 9 to 5. I can’t go home and cook my dinner. So when you’re in the studio at night and you get hungry it takes a lot of self-control. However, as of lately, when I know I have a long day of sessions or a show I try to plan my meals ahead of time and cook for the week so that I can try to stay on track with my healthy lifestyle.
BFT: As far as being physically active, were you involved in any sports or any other activities while you were growing up, and if so, what did you do?
JN: It’s crazy because I’m way more active now than when I was younger. But I ran track in high school and was involved in a lot of dance groups, drill teams and singing groups, so yeah I was pretty active but I’m way more active now.
BFT: What do you like to indulge in when you have those moments when you can eat whatever you want?
JN: My favorite indulgences are sushi, which isn’t that-that-bad [Laughs] but yeah, sushi, chicken wings, chocolate; those are the things that kind of make me a little weak, but I do think it’s important to indulge just from time to time, it keeps you happy.
BFT: So, another part of overall health and being able to achieve your fitness goals is the ability to manage stress. How do you relieve the stress that you may experience in your career and find the time to get centered again?
JN: I meditate, I pray and I write in a journal. Honestly, I try to meditate everyday because it really helps me relieve my stress and I’m all about positive energy and love, so I start my day by just thanking God for his blessings and writing down my goals and visualizing them. It really helps get my day started off with positive energy and happiness. So yeah, I definitely try to do that everyday.
BFT: What advice would you give to the Black Fitness Today audience on how to make healthy choices or how to maintain a healthy lifestyle?
JN: You said healthy lifestyle; I think that’s the key word because it has to be a lifestyle. So many people try to diet or take these extreme measures that can’t be realistically maintained so they end up backtracking and losing motivation. So I know for me, I gradually made choices that I could live with for the rest of my life, and that’s what makes it a healthy lifestyle, something that you can do for the rest of your life. For example, a year-and-a-half-ago I cut out beef so I don’t eat beef, I don’t eat pork and I just made the switch from dairy milk to almond milk, so it was just a gradual thing. I’m the healthiest I have ever been in my life just by making those subtle changes and it’s really all about doing things that you can do forever and not trying to take such extreme measures and saying things like okay, I’m never going to eat bread again in my life, and then next week you’re over- indulging…it’s important to visualize your goals and stay happy and healthy.
BFT: We know you have an Indiegogo campaign going on, which ends next week. So how can our audience learn more about this project?
JN: The Indiegogo project is a way for listeners to help bring my album and film, ‘In Search of Me,’ to life. I really want to stay independent with my first project because I want to build my artistry with my creative vision and maintain my musical integrity, because sometimes when artists sign to quickly, labels already have this pre-packaged idea of what they want you to be and I just want to make sure something like this is different.
The whole Broadway-element to my music is something that hasn’t really been done lately, so in order to maintain that creative vision that Devin [Johnson] and I have created, we’re just doing it independently so we did the Indiegogo campaign because there’s only so much you can do with just talent and our limited resources alone.
Watch the album teaser below:
Follow Jade Novah via social media or by visiting JadeNovah.com!
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