Toronto has been on fire with the new wave of artists that it has been ushering in from Drake, The Weeknd, to PartyNextDoor. However, what seems to be missing amongst this group of new artists is a female presence. With a city that is bursting with talent, it seems odd that a female artist, rapper or singer, hasn’t emerged from the folds. However, I believe in due time that’s all about to change with singer/songwriter, Rochelle Jordan.
UK born and Toronto bred, Jordan has been singing since the age of eight, but initially withheld from actually pursuing a career. Before Drake and Justin Bieber, the city didn’t have a breakout star that gained international success, but everything changed once she hit 19. Going into the heart of Toronto, she discovered a city bursting with a plethora of artists with diversity and talent. This inspired her to pursue her own career in music and from there, she began posting her music to YouTube. It was here that she met her producer, KLSH, who she states is the “40 to her Drake” and the pair having been making magic ever since. Wanting to branch out and grow, the singer relocated to Los Angeles in 2013, which has seemed to the benefit her greatly. She’s toured with Jessie Ware, done background vocals on Childish Gambino’s track “Telegraph Ave”, and gave her vocals on an episode of Black Dynamite, which allowed her to pull from her Jamaican heritage.
Rochelle Jordan is heavily influenced by her predecessors, which include artists like Missy Elliot and Amerie. The influence can be heard in her sound which I can only describe as classics 90s R&B meets the future. She’s been known to receive a lot of comparisons to the late Aaliyah and although she appreciates the compliments, she wants to forge her own legacy. She’s had three projects so far: ROJO (2011), Pressure (2012), and more recently, 1021 (2014). What makes her last project so different is that it was an era that encapsulated a ton of change. Not only was she in a different city, but her last two projects were recorded in the privacy of her bedroom. On top of that, there were changes in her private life that aided in the creation of the album.
Some of her standout tracks include “How To Feel”, “Visions”, and “Follow Me”. “How To Feel” was actually the first song that she made and is somber in tone, reflecting on feelings of self-doubt and uncertainty. “Visions” is her interpretation of Ginuwine’s “I’ll Do Anything” and also pays homage to the original song by Stevie Wonder. The song speaks of a fantasy world inhabited by her and her lover with no plans of escape. In “Follow Me”, Jordan paints herself as the perfect girl, stating that if he’s looking for a winner, he doesn’t have to look any further. The versatility within each song is a marker of each era of growth in Rochelle’s music and the vibes that her music provide are hard to ignore. As of now, she is an independent artist. She hasn’t ruled out signing to a major label, but is enjoying her independence right now, as well as, the expansion of her brand, Protostar. Rochelle Jordan has been doing this for a few years now and I can’t wait until the day that we’ll see her name beside the rest of Toronto’s
As of now, she is an independent artist. She hasn’t ruled out signing to a major label, but is enjoying her independence right now, as well as, the expansion of her brand, Protostar. Rochelle Jordan has been doing this for a few years now and I can’t wait until the day that we’ll see her name beside the rest of Toronto’s elite.