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NUNN ON ONE MUSIC Bryce Vine grows into the big time
by Jerry Nunn, Windy City Times

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Singer/rapper Bryce Vine started early in the music business at the young age of 13. It was under guidance from his mom Tracey Ross—who many know from the soap opera Passions—that he auditioned for a reality competition show The Glee Project. After landing a part in the cast, Vine was sent home.

The talented artist then recharged his skills by attending the Berklee College of Music and was signed to the label Kiva House Lambroza by fellow student Nolan Lambroza. He gained traction with the song "Drew Barrymore" and is currently working on a debut album.

After opening for singer MAX across the globe, Vine is going on a solo tour, returning him to Chicago in 2019.

Windy City Times: How is the tour going with MAX?

Bryce Vine: He's the best. We have been friends for over a year now. We have started writing together.

WCT: MAX has played several Pride festivals so maybe you could, too.

BV: I would love to.

WCT: How was it being raised by a famous mother?

BV: It didn't really start until she was on Star Search—way before I was born. When I was 13, we were dirt-poor and I came home to find my mom had bought a car. We had driven around a Honda with no insurance so I knew something had changed. People started coming up to her and talking about the soap opera.

WCT: This made you want to perform early?

BV: Hell, yeah. Music made me happy and was therapy. Me and my mom would sing to Disney movies. Me and my dad would listen to R&B, jazz and Tony! Toni! Tone! in the car.

It didn't take me long to figure out I could write my own songs and create my own therapy.

WCT: How was The Glee Project experience?

BV: I went to college in Boston, and Glee was the biggest show on television. I had no interest because I didn't watch it. My mom called and encouraged me to sign up. I made an audition tape of me singing "Gold Digger" by Kanye West. I got flown to LA where there were hundreds of kids. I had to decide to either stay in school or take that opportunity. I took it and was the first one cut off!

I was always very insecure about my talent and thought I had climbed two steps to only get knocked down. I just started putting out songs. Some of them got attention and now we are here.

WCT: What inspired your song "Drew Barrymore?"

BV: I just started making this beat one day. I wanted to avoid writing a love song talking about someone's looks. Anyone can write a song talking about physical beauty.

Julia Michaels sent me an idea three years ago about Drew Barrymore and used her name in a line. Drew is not a Victoria's Secret model, but has something else special about her. She is sincere and funny. That was the girl I wanted to talk about.

WCT: Do you have a favorite Drew Barrymore movie?

BV: I grew up on The Wedding Singer.

WCT: There's a musical version of it.

BV: No way!

WCT: Do you have a favorite musical?

BV: A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum is my favorite.

My mom took me to see Ragtime as a child and I just didn't get it. So that is one I didn't like.

WCT: You have a debut album coming out?

BV: Yes; it's called Carnival. It has all the right elements. It has a song called "You" that is one my favorite songs ever. It is a love song about appreciating someone. That could be your child, significant other, husband or mom.

WCT: What do you want people to know about you?

BV: I have always liked connecting people. My birthday parties were my best friends from everywhere. I met a lesbian in my high school and she became the drummer of our school band. I was just invited to her wedding and the whole band was there. That is some of the best environments to be in.

There are so many divides between people that I want to be a bridge.

WCT: Sounds like you have a diverse life.

BV: Look at how I started. I was born with a lesbian midwife. My parents were open to all kinds of people. That was how I was raised. I never felt like people were different than me.

I try to put that into music and make people feel good in a room.

Vine winds back into town on Friday, Feb. 15, at Lincoln Hall, 2424 N. Lincoln Ave.

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