"I’ve always been a person that wants not just to do it; I want to be it.”
Teyana Taylor may seem like a newer name in the game to a few, but don't get it twisted, she's been around for a minute. The 27-year-old is a Harlem raised, home-schooled only child (on her mother's side) who grew up skateboarding and riding BMX bikes until one of her mother's industry friends took her into a studio one day. “I didn’t have no bio, no demo, no nothing. I just went with my skateboard,” she tells Playboy. “Sassy, just sassy.”
“I have a leader vibe about me,” she adds. “Because I was homeschooled, I had no choice but to raise my hand even if I didn’t want to. But I was fearless—pure, raw. I would see groups of people dancing, and instead of joining in, I would actually want to make up the moves. I’ve always been a person that wants not just to do it; I want to be it.”
Just because Teyana was snatched into the music and studio world at a young age, doesn't mean it brought about great success from the jump. She only just released her debut, Kanye West produced project, K.T.S.E., in June and after it was finally released, it still wasn't the right version. “Patience has been my biggest challenge," she explains. "There’s times where I’d just be laying in bed, crying. I’d been doing this for so many years and it was just not happening.”
Despite the mix-up, there was something so great about working with Kanye that made her vision a reality for what she wanted her fans to have. “That’s the beauty of working with someone like Kanye: He gets how creative people work. I would never let someone tell me, ‘This is what you’re going to sing today,’ ” she says. “That’s the Karl Lagerfeld in me. I got to grab the camera myself, because you don’t see what I see, baby. I need you to be able to feel me. I need you to be able to touch me.”
Read her full feature here.