Billy Winn is a singer and songwriter who is anticipating the release of his new song titled "Crash" on October 20, and its accompanying video which will be released via Apple Music on November 6, 2017. After splitting with his record label two years ago, the Washington D.C.-based Billy took some time off; "Crash" is his first single since that time, and the song ponders what a person is to do when they fall for someone who is wrong for them.

In an exclusive interview, Billy recently discussed the song, his career as a musician, and more.

Music, songs, and the industry

Meagan Meehan (MM): When did you discover your vocal talents and how did you decide to dive into the music industry?

Billy Winn (BW): I’ve been singing pretty much my whole life. I started off in a theater when I was five or six—and so singing was just part of the job. In theater you have to do it all—acting, singing, dancing—and so I started singing because of theater. It wasn’t until I was about twelve that I started seriously considering focusing on music, and becoming a recording artist. My biggest inspiration for wanting to become a recording artist came from my love of music videos. I loved music videos as a kid, and I still do, and that was the thing that pushed me into pursuing the music industry.

MM: Do you do anything, in particular, to keep your voice in good shape?

BW: I vocalize daily. Because I dance and sing, I have to keep up my cardio and so warming up my voice on a daily basis is a must—even if I don’t have to sing that day, I still vocalize.

MM: Did you always write your own music, or did you start creating your own lyrics as your career progressed?

BW: It’s a funny story…When I was a kid, I started a Hip-Hop/Pop group with my brother and cousins, and even though they weren’t, I was very serious about what we were doing, haha. So, once we decided that we were a group, I thought to myself: “Okay, we’re a music group, and a group needs songs.

We don’t know any songwriters, so we will have to do it.” And so, I sat down and started writing songs for us. I laugh now thinking back to some of the songs I wrote as a twelve-year-old and I still remember the very first song I ever wrote—well at least the chorus anyway!

MM: You separated from your music label a few years ago, so was that a tough decision and--ultimately--the right one?

BW: It was the right decision—having worked with them for two years and not seeing the kind of progress I was hoping AND working for, it was necessary to move on. The tough part was not knowing what would happen next…if it was over for my career in the music industry, or if it was still just the beginning. More than anything, it was emotionally draining—because I really believed in those records, and the end result just soured it all for me.

Labels, singles, and performing

MM: What inspired "Crash" and what has it been like to produce it without a record label?

BW: I’ve always produced music without a record label. The last deal I signed was a result of my songs—not the other way around, so producing “Crash” without a label was no different from how I’ve always created music.

The difference now, however, is producing music with that experience under my belt—knowing more about the industry and myself as a businessman, as a person, and as an artist.

The inspiration for the new single called “Crash” came directly from the music. It was produced by my friend Mark A. Barrie of the production team Madscience, who I’d worked closely with on some remixes to songs I’d released when I was signed to the label. We decided to do an original together, and the track he sent I connected with instantly. It’s hard to make something sound sad and erotic at the same time, but that was what I was hearing when I listened to the track, and the song was born from that—the idea of erotic sadness.

MM: What other songs have you written and/or become known for performing and do you have any personal favorites?

BW: I write all of my songs, so any song you’ve heard of mine up to this point, I wrote it. “Crash” has become a favorite of mine because it’s a new sound for me and represents where I am right now musically. Yet two of my favorite songs to perform are “He Won’t Do” and “Crossfire.” “He Won’t Do” is a blast because the lyrics are kind of risqué, and I love the reaction I get from people when they hear it and/or see me performing it, haha. And “Crossfire” is just one of my favorite songs I’ve ever written, and becoming a staple during my shows—mainly because I strip down to perform it!

MM: At the moment, what are you working on musically and where do you hope your career will be in five years?

BW: Currently, I am working with Mark (the producer for “Crash”) and a new production team on my first proper EP.

I’ve been writing and recording since midsummer, and I’m really excited not only have a new collection of songs but to also present them in ways that I wasn’t able to before because of the label or whatever hurdles may have been in the way. And five years from now…only time will tell…I’d love to be touring the world and doing exactly what I am doing now on a far greater scale, and if I have my way, that’s exactly what I’ll be doing.

I’d definitely like to thank my fans and everyone who has continued to support me and hang in there with me. I know it’s been a long time coming, but I promise you will not be disappointed with what I have in store!

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