She is innovative, beautiful, sexy, eloquent and more importantly – a smart, savvy, professional woman representing Houston to the fullest— the multi-talented Tami LaTrell is Houston’s hottest rising star in the music industry.
For anyone who doesn’t know Tami LaTrell, come from under the rock you’re hiding and get to know her, because she’s sure to take the world by storm.
Tami is young, but is definitely not a novice to the music industry, as her meteoric rise began in her teens when she sold a song to one of the biggest stars in the world: Grammy award-winning, multi-platinum pop icon Whitney Houston (Just Whitney).
Tami’s gifts are not limited to singing and song writing; she is a motivator and a teacher. A graduate of Texas Southern University (with a Bachelor’s degree in Journalism, specialty in PR/Advertising and a minor in Business), she often visits the campus as a guest speaker sharing her experiences with students in the School of Communication.
“I was privileged to be alongside Tami as a panelist speaking to college students at Texas Southern University,” said Nakia Cooper, Producer of Digital Media for khou.com and Owner/Editor-in-Chief of Lip Service: News with Attitude. “I was blown away by her story, quite inspired and frankly, learned a few things. She has vast knowledge of social media, up on the digital age and definitely knows her stuff when it comes to media law.”
In addition to grinding it out in the studio, Tami currently works as the Online Editor for Radio One-Houston managing all web content and social media for all three of their radio stations; theboxhouston.com, myhoustonmajic.com and praisehouston.com.
When speaking to college students and on her “Through My Eyes” webisodes chronicling her journey as a singer and songwriter, Tami lets it all hang out; talking about her personal struggles and maintaining her faith in God.
“God is my foundation. Although I am not perfect and I do make mistakes, there have been times when things could have been avoided but I know where my help comes from,” Tami shared in a webisode. “I feel like my story is just not about me, it’s about the lives I’ve touched. That’s why I always try to make an impact. I just keep it real and be transparent.”
And she is real and has faced many obstacles other young women face every day – but one thing, she never let anything stop her. While Tami was pursuing her career, she found out she was pregnant and made the decision to move forward with her pregnancy. She says while it was a minor setback, it did not or would not be a game-changer.
“Literally, when I got back, I knew I was taking a step back. I know that I wrote a hit once, and during the time I was pregnant I got a call that Keyshia Cole (Just Like You) bought my song and that went platinum. So I was like, ‘I did this once, I can do it again, I’m not trippin’” Tami said in TSU Professor Serbino Sandifer-Walker’s class. “God already showed me the gift he gave me so if I decide to be normal for a change and have a kid and get married, that’s what normal people do.”
Tami admits it was a tough decision at first to decide to be so open, but she realized she needed to be herself – real – if people were going to relate.
“I had to endure certain things that made me the writer that I am, that made me the mother that I am, and I wanted to share that with other people,” she said.
Tami is now hard at work on her album and recently finished shooting the video for her single “Coastin” in which she insisted highlighted Houston “through her eyes.”
Check out some behind the scenes photos from the Coastin’ video shoot!
Photography by: Twilight Productions
“I want to get little elements of H-Town; some slabs (cars), the city lights, downtown, my favorite restaurants, my favorite spots because that’s what it’s about. So I just want to make sure the video tells the story to where it gives that vibe,” Tami said.
On her new album, Tami is working with super producer, Drathoven, who’s worked with Paul Wall, Chamillionaire, Yolanda Adams and Shei Atkins. Drathoven talked about Tami’s professionalism and the chemistry the two share in the studio.
“When you get me and her in a room, you know, we might come in with a song ready or a track done, but nine times out of 10, we end up starting from scratch,” said Drathoven. “It’s so beautiful, you know, she’s like the one person I can get in here with and we end up starting from scratch and the record comes out bananas.”
And even when Tami is vibin’ in one of those magical sessions with Drathoven, she says the unexpected can sometimes happen. She once had to take her daughter with her who, while Tami and Drathoven were in the creative thick of things, got sick. So what does Tami do? She did what any responsible mother would and scratched the entire session.
“At the end of the day, that’s my priority. I’m a mother and I still have to take care of business – and my business is my child,” Tami said, showing no matter what, she is a mother first.
That’s what makes her amazing. She is a mother, scholar, entrepreneur, philanthropher, business professional and a strong, black, accomplished woman.
We at Lip Service: News with Attitude say, “Do your thang, Mama!”
Tami does not like to toot her own horn, but we don’t mind doing it for her. Besides working with Whitney Houston and Keyshia Cole, other writing credits include; Universal Motown crooner London; the movie soundtrack for Hair Show; International J-Xavier; Rap-a-Lot’s Devin the Dude (Waiting to Inhale);a feature on Chamillionaire’s Sound of Revenge; J-Dawg’s Still Behind Tint and a developing roster of independent artists.
Recently, Tami shot the video for her first single, “Coastin’”. The video was directed by DJ Young Samm; choreographed by Keto Gentry; and hair, makeup and wardrobe provided byJacata Santee, Yaya Williams and Too Faced Cosmetics. Additional wardrobe for the rooftop scene was provided by Prime’ Boutique.
Check out the Behind the Scenes video shoot for Coastin’.