An Interview with Dru
It’s official. The man behind the hits “Getting It In” and “She Can Ride” has been style approved by yours truly. Better known as the front man of the former RnB group, “In Essence”, Dru has had no problem emerging with a fresh style as a solo artist. His wardrobe consists of original items designed by his stylist, Melina Minkensky (better known as Madi Styles), and together, the duo is in works to start a female clothing line called “Madicakes”. Check out the interview after the jump.
Who is your style icon and why?
I don’t know if I have a style icon really, I do pay attention to style but it’s not the first thing I think about. I like Kanye’s style. [He’s] really fresh. I like the whole style in that Mercy video. Kanye is doing his thing.
Do you have a favourite designer?
I can’t say that I do. I’m so not into names or labels. Whatever looks fresh on me is fine. I kind of work with my stylist. She just says ‘Dru wear this, it’ll look good on you’.
Working with a stylist, do you feel as if your style has improved? Do you catch on to what she tells you or do you ignore her advice?
There are times where I’ll be watching something and I’ll call her and be like turn on this channel. What are those shades that he’s wearing? Or what’s that vest we need to find that? Or she will make it for me. Madi does a lot of custom jean vests. She’ll find a rocker shirt and cut it up and then sew it on the back. We are going to start a line called Effortless.
As an artist do you feel pressure to stay on top of the trends?
A little bit. It was the whole transition; remember when guys were wearing the baggy jeans? I came up in that era so that transition, my stylist was like no! You are not wearing those baggy jeans, throw them all out, give them to the Salvation Army. No way! She got me used to wearing the more fitted clothing. I think there’s a little bit of pressure to make sure you’re kind of up to date but not trying too hard, not trying to follow anyone but know what’s hot and what’s whack right now.
When you were part of In Essence, how did you keep your individuality and was it difficult to hold your own?
We kind of each had our own little style. I kind of always did the cut off t-shirt and jeans. We all kind of had a lot more hair back then so some of us had cornrows and twists and like fades; we kind of used that to separate us.
What are some of the young styles that you wish you could rock?
The florescent extra, extra skinnies are popular and it’s dope, but even if I ever wanted to rock them [which I don’t] I still wouldn’t. I don’t care how much my stylist says to do it, I won’t haha!
When you are not working what do you like to wear?
I like sweats a lot, wife beaters, sneakers. I like jeans and t-shirts but if I’m just lounging then definitely sweats.
When you are working, what do you prefer to wear regardless of what your stylist says?
I keep it simple. Jeans and a tank lately for summer, with chucks.
You have done a lot of work for artists in Korea and Japan. How was the experience different than producing your own music or even for producing for an artist that is closer to home?
When I made the stuff that Crystal Kay used for her release, I wasn’t making it for anyone in particular. I have a song writing deal where I just write and get people to demo it. My publishing company just shops it for different artists, commercials, and movies. Crystal Kay kind of just picked it up, loved it, and made it her own. I didn’t make it with a Japanese artist in mind. It tripped me out [hearing Crystal Kay sing my song], I loved it.
What can we expect from your new album? What will make it different from everything else you’ve previously put out?
The new album kind of evolved from my first album. My first album was more focused on the slower RnB and this one is more up-tempo, more party, more laid back. More fun and not as serious. I do have the soulful stuff on the album but I wanted to try something new and be a little more edgy. Everyone is like what does “getting it in” mean and what is “she can ride me” and I’m like it means what I’m talking about. You know what I’m saying. Getting it in is about sex, yes it is. I find a lot of artists in Canada, especially urban artists, don’t do something edgier. At this point I don’t care. I’m not trying to make music for MuchMusic anymore; I’m not trying to make stuff for Canadian radio. I just want to make something that’s hot, you know? It’s harder for black artists to get on the mainstream radio because you have to kind of give in to certain things for the Canadian artist so that’s why I’m looking forward to the next album because I’m looking into releasing in the US. I don’t have to worry about the slow Canadian radio mentality.
Make sure you check out his latest single, “She Can Ride”, out on iTunes now and follow him on twitter at @DRUMUZIC!
With love and style,