Reality TV was once a place for singers to go once it was clear to everyone but them that the spotlight had faded on their musical career. That couldn't be further from the truth these days, at least not for Memphis' own K. Michelle is not only burning up the charts, but is among the nominees for "Best New Artist" at the 2013 Soul Train Awards. The Love and Hip-Hop: ATL alumna is up against Kendrick Lamar, Bridget Kelly, TGT and fellow reality princess, Tamar Braxton. Other nominees for this year's ceremony include Janelle Monae, Justin Timberlake, Miguel, Drake and Solange. Hosted by Anthony Anderson, this year's show will tape on November 8th in Las Vegas and will air on CENTRIC and BET on December 1st.
K. Michelle will be among those taking the stage to perform at the big show—a major moment for the budding star. Other perfomers include: Jennifer Hudson, Tamar Braxton, Smokey Robinson, Wale, Bobby Caldwell, Eric Benet, Ron Isley, Kem and Chrisette Michele.
We caught up with the "V.S.O.P." singer to talk Soul Train, her departure from Atlanta and her plans for the upcoming year.
EBONY: How do you feel about being nominated for your first Soul Train Award?
K. Michelle: Being nominated for my first Soul Train award is amazing. I’m super excited about it. I’m ready to get on stage and show people why I’ve been nominated.
EBONY: What should we expect from your performance?
KM: My performance is going to be exciting. I don’t like to just stand around and I wanted to be really entertaining. So there’s going to be some choreography. I have something creative that I’m sure you guys are really gonna like.
EBONY: What’s your favorite Soul Train memory?
KM: My favorite memory is R. Kelly [on the awards show] two or three years ago when he performed his old school hits on the piano.
EBONY: I understand you’ve relocated to New York. How has the experience been being in the city?
KM: I have been super busy. I haven’t had a chance to make it home. But I have a spot in the city that’s absolutely amazing. I’m a country girl, and I need chicken and I need to be able to cook Sunday dinner. And I have my spot, but I haven’t really moved in. So it’s been really a process.
EBONY: In terms of the new show [Love & Hip Hop: NY], has it been a good experience overall?
KM: I’m really not on there as much as people expect. I’m not in every episode. I’m more of like a guest. It wasn’t a lot of transition for me. I’ve done the taping and everything. It’s easy for me to come and talk to my friends and [handle] our situations. But it wasn’t a transition because I wasn’t filming everyday.
EBONY: You’re currently headed on tour. What’s the feeling going into that?
KM: I’m very excited! It starts November 4th. It’s my first tour that I’m headlining. I’m going out on tour next year also with some other people. But this is something for the fans who’ve been with me for a while. I’m giving them something one on one. Sevyn Streeter is opening, which I thought was a good idea because I respect her as a songwriter and as a new artist.
EBONY: What are your plans for the next year?
KM: Well, there’s the other tour in January. I also am getting ready to move on to my second single, “Can’t Raise a Man,” but “V.S.O.P.” is still climbing the charts and is #7 [on the R&B charts], I think, right now so we’re taking our time with the second record. At the top of next year, I want to release my new single for my own show, which should coincide with an album.
EBONY: Can you tell us a bit about your own show? When should we expect that?
KM: We’re beginning the process. We start shooting really soon but full production doesn’t kick off until January really because I’m still busy with everything for the album. But I’ve had meetings with Mona and everything. You guys should see it in March around my birthday though.