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Interview with Chris Rene: "Young Homie"

Apr 13, 2012

Third place X Factor finalist Chris Rene opens up to Suite101 on Friday, April 13, 2012, about his newest single “Young Homie,” and his music career.

Chris is the ultimate paradigm of an individual who was able to overcome his struggles and achieve success. After battling numerous addictions, and with the help and support of his family, he entered rehab, where after ten weeks of being sober, he pursued his passion in life and auditioned for the United States version of X Factor, with a rendition of his original tune “Young Homie.”

“Being on the show was a great opportunity since it opened a lot of doors for me. To come in third place is a big blessing for me,” he acknowledges.

While on the reality singing competition, his audition and live singing footage have received over twenty-five million YouTube views, a staggering feature, thus making him the most-watched contestant on this year’s show. “That is something that happens once in a blue moon,” he reveals. “I am just so blessed to have that happen to me.”

He was mentored by music executive and renowned record producer L.A. Reid. “I was very fortunate to have a good relationship with him,” he shares. “We were stoked that I got signed to a label [Epic Records].”

Thanks to his well-received performance on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, his single propelled into the Top 20 of the iTunes pop chart. “It was an honor to be on her show, as well as to go and perform the single there. When I spoke to her she was really happy for me, and I am super excited to move forward, and being on there did a lot for me,” Chris states.

“Being a musician is not hard at all. I am very lucky to go around and meet people, take photos, and do interviews. The only challenging aspect of the job is being away from my friends and family, but it’s all worth it. It’s a balance,” he admits.

Chris Discusses “Young Homie”

“‘Young Homie’ is my new single, and I recorded it the day after I got third place on X Factor,” he says. “Right now, we are on a radio tour promoting it, and it’s a beautiful thing knowing that you wrote your first single.”

He filmed a music video for the tune, which was filmed in his hometown, Santa Cruz, California. “It was all natural and organic. There were no actors in it, and it just happened. That’s one thing you don’t really see in music video nowadays, and we captured that well, and I am thankful to the director and his crew,” he remarks.

Chris worked on the video with esteemed director Jeremy Rall. “He’s a really down-to-earth guy, and he has made videos for the best artists [Ludacris, Jay-Z and Snoop Dogg], and I am honored to have him on this journey with me,” he adds.

Chris Gives Advice to X Factor Hopefuls

“Be courageous and be confident, and know that if this is what you like to do, there is nothing that can stop you, but you need to give it your all,” he recommends.

Chris Talks About the Future

In the future, Chris plans on touring in the United States, as well as in Canada, Europe, Australia and Japan. “I want to make as much music as I can, and perhaps even do movies and a clothing line too,” he says.

He notes that he would love to work with such artists as Eminem, Kanye West, James Durbin, Rihanna and Nicki Minaj. “Rihanna is awesome, special and really big, and anything she makes is huge. I would love to do a song with her,” he concludes.