Felicia Mckiver is a self-taught, professional pianist and singer who manages her own band. Though it’s tough sometimes to be a woman in a field usually dominated by men, she holds her own. The name of her band is “Felicious” which is symbolic of her drive and passion for what she does. This is a woman who knows what she wants, handles her business and gets it done. Be on the look out for her new CD arriving this summer!
-What are your goals as an artist?
My goals are to continue to perform, write music, further my education in music and make myself more known as a writer and a performer.
-How did growing up in West Virginia impact you musically?
I was born and raised in Connecticut but spent every summer of my childhood in the mountains of Vivian, West Virginia with my grandparents, two sisters and Aunt. We didn’t have any African American radio stations, so all we mainly listened to was country music and church music so it is in my soul. Although I am mainly known as an R&B and Smooth Jazz artist, there is so much more that I have to offer when it comes to my roots.
-You lead your own band, Felicious, where you are in the position of hiring the musicians. Do you find it challenging to be a woman in this position?
It can be very challenging as a female. I had to literally stand my ground as a woman, demanding respect for my hard work. People would try to back door my gigs, get upset because you find no interest in them (personally), artists I used to watch when I was younger I often give them work and some found themselves in an awkward position. Most venues didn’t appreciate that, so they would tell me who would try. It used to shock me. I used to cry and get heartbroken over some of the made up stories from local crabs in the basket, but as a woman I learned how to handle it because the truth always works itself out. Music is so beautiful, yet at times it scares me how devious some artists can be. I have a lot more love than hate and I just keep feeding myself knowledge. I remain a work in progress.
-You’re gigging in the clubs often and play a lot of covers. Do you feel that people would be accepting of original music when you start to slide your original tunes into the repertoire?
I believe that the audience is very accepting of original material and it has a lot to do with the way you present it also. If you present it with confidence and you mean it from the heart and soul, you can’t lose.
-Tell us about the work involved in producing this new cd that you have coming out soon.
I had to work on my CD in spurts. I spent a lot of time helping others, performing and relocating and now I’m totally focused on finishing my project. 90% of the music is done, now it’s all about laying down the vocals! It is more on the R&B side with a jazzy touch to it.
– If or when you release a cd beyond this one, what if anything will you do differently?
I would not rely on someone else’s time, for one. You know the old saying, if you want it done right, do it yourself. I will also spend more time the next time around showing my other roots, the country girl side of me and the jazz side, too.
– What is more appealing to you, writing or performing?
That is rough, but I would have to say performing. Sharing your spirit with another person and feeling the joy they get from it is a natural high and I’m thankful to be able to do it.
– What are your goals as a writer?
My goals as a writer is to get out there and get known as one and write for other artists around the world.
– What is Felicia doing in five years – life-wise and musically?
Musically, I wish to get more educated. I am a self-taught piano player and singer. As a kid, I practiced on a kitchen table, pretending it was a piano as I read from a book. I also have never been married, so who knows, I may get me a husband that can put up with me and let me travel in an out of the country!
For more, visit: FeliciousPlays.com