Some things in life seem predestined. For Houston, it was a successful career as an R&B singer with a hip-hop edge. On the Los Angeles native’s remarkable debut album, It’s Already Written, he merges the two musical genres in a stunning way that breathes life into both styles.
“I grew up in the hip-hop element, but the R&B was always there from the blood,” Houston says. “I just knew how to sing, so I pretty much mixed them.”
Such is the case with “I Like That,” the album’s explosive first single. Joined by Chingy, Nate Dogg and I-20 on the Trak Starz-produced cut, Houston shows that his soaring vocals complement the platinum acts joining him on the sure-fire party hit. The song’s funky, mesmerizing beat and engaging lyrics about having fun in a club make it the type of universal song that sends people streaming to the dance floor. “I just did my homework and brought something to the table that definitely would make them get off their feet,” explains Houston.
Houston shows his sensual side on “Love You Down,” a touching remake of the Ready for the World classic, while he demonstrates the unyielding love he can have for a woman on “I Promise,” a sexy, elegant selection that showcases Houston’s smoldering vocals.
For all of its love themes, It’s Already Written is about more than romantic relationships. Indeed, Houston examines the impact his father leaving him has had on his life on the stirring “The Man Is What I Am.” “There’s a grip of sons out there that don’t have their dads and this record is speaking to them,” Houston says. “I’m talking about how my father wasn’t there and how he tried to come back at a certain point in my life. I told him it was too late, that he should have been there showing me how to ride my first bike, how to throw a football. But he wasn’t and I had to learn on my own how to be a man.”
As a child, Houston had a strong relationship with his mother, a Belize native whose skills include painting, sewing and, most significantly for Houston, singing. Always supportive, Houston’s mother encouraged him to sing around the house, in church and anywhere else. But she assumed that her son was singing for recreation. Houston had other plans.
Houston attended Hamilton High School and Academy of Music in Los Angeles, but he was enrolled in the normal high school, not the music program. Nonetheless, he would regularly be invited to participate in activities taking place in the school’s music academy because his musical spark was so commanding.
Houston soon joined a couple of neighborhood R&B groups and became a fixture on the street corners of Los Angeles, where he and his friends would rap the afternoons away. But Houston had a novel knack: he would freestyle his lyrics, but instead of rapping, he would sing them.
With his confidence building, Houston started entering singing contests in the Los Angeles area and became more polished as a performer, lyricist, dancer and vocalist. His management team decided to record a videotape of Houston’s explosive performances, which they hoped would help the singer land a recording contract.
Soon thereafter, executives from Capitol Records saw the tape and realized that they were watching a star in the making. Houston then signed with Capitol Records and began working on the songs for what would become It’s Already Written.
Now with a sizzling debut album that includes dance floor hits, future bedroom classics and thought-provoking selections, Houston is set to establish himself in the world of R&B and Hip Hop.
Houston Bio from Discogs
For the R&B singer, Houston Summers IV, please us Houston (2)
For the '80s funk project, please use either Houston (3) or Houston (4)
For the '90s rock artist, please use Houston (5)
For the graphic designer, please use Houston (6)