With the release of her debut visual “French,” Miloh Smith has officially announced her arrival in the music game. Born and raised in Atlanta, GA, the petite songstress defines the diverse nature of her city by mixing melodic flows with piercing lyrics about love and pain. Whether rapping, singing or doing both, she grabs listeners’ attention with a talent and style few modern artists can imitate.
Miloh is a key member of the growing “New Atlanta” movement, which includes peers Two9, Spree Wilson and Trinidad Jame$. With those connections and a recent co-sign from King Tip, She seems destined to make a lot of noise in 2013 and beyond. Her stellar 2012 mixtape “Suite 404” was a big first step towards stardom.
As more people experience “French,” a seductive visual featuring overlapped film noir imagery, Miloh gets closer to her goal of making original music that can’t be compared to anything fans have ever heard. Sensing her growing momentum, Mechanical Dummy caught up with Miloh while she was chilling at an Atlanta tattoo shop in January to find out more about her past influences, present moves and future goals.
Words by G. King
Mechanical Dummy: Who are you and what do you create?
Miloh Smith: I’m Miloh Smith and I’m an artist. I never say too much about what kind of music I make because I feel like I can make whatever I want at any time. I do rapping, I do singing, but I never really wanna say any of those off top just to put a thought in someone’s head for what I might be.
MD: What made you decide to try to become a musician?
MS: I’ve been doing music, doing talent shows and that type of things. Writing, been doing all of that. But I just decided to give it a go when I saw everybody around me progressing. You are what you surround yourself with. That’s what you become.
MD: How did you get involved in the “New Atlanta” movement?
MS: These were just my friends. When you go to certain places, you’re around the same people time and time again. So we just built a relationship and I always wanted to do music and I decided to give it a try and my friends finally heard it so we just created the union. Started at 20, 21. Now it’s been a year of me officially being a recording artist.
MD: Somebody who’s close to that movement is Trinidad Jame$. What’s it been like to watch his rise?
MS: I am proud of the homie! Honestly, he did everything the right way. He stayed true to himself and it’s working for him. Can’t hate, just gotta show love, man. It’s beautiful.
MD: When did you first share your talent with people?
MS: I did my very first talent show when I was in eighth grade. I was just like, “Fuck it, they don’t know me, I have to be on this stage.” I sang Alicia Keys, “You Don’t Know My Name.” And I just kept doing that so by the end of my senior year of high school I had come to know people. My superlative was most talented.
MD: What is it that you enjoy most about performing?
MS: The feedback. The vibe from the crowd. It definitely means something. It gives you a feeling when you’ve made the music yourself to know that people are accepting of it and they actually like it.
MD: Who do you look to for influence or inspiration?
MS: As far as songwriting, I look to Missy Elliot. I owe her a lot because she’s so diverse. She’s so versatile. She can do anything: She can sing, she can rap, she produces, she writes for other artists, she can even dance a little bit. She’s a veteran. Vocally, I would say a lot of my influences come from 90’s R&B. I look at T-Boz a lot. Erykah Badu and Amy Winehouse and Aaliyah, for sure. Her melodies were always on point.
MD: How have people responded to your mixtape “Suite 404?”
MS: The feedback has been crazy, man! Everybody says you’re dope, you’re really different. And to me, that’s the biggest compliment I can ever receive because music has been going on for so long. And for nobody to really have ever heard a sound like me says a lot. It means I’m doing something right.
MD: What’s next for you?
MS: What I’m working on next is my second project “Pulp Fiction.” I don’t have a date yet, I’m just making sure it’s perfect. I’m just taking my time with it. I’m doing a lot of features, just collaborating with a lot of artists and just kind of building my brand.
MD: What advice can you give to the Young G’z reading this hoping to make their creative dreams come true?
MS: Know your history. Study the game. Know what has happened before so you make sure that you don’t repeat. And just be yourself. Stay true. Make the music that you want and don’t try to chase a certain sound because there’s not gonna be too many people like you.