Feature Friday: Meet TeDarryl


So after reading this, you’ll probably ask yourself, “What DOESN’T TeDarryl do?”

A singer, writer, actor, print model, stage director and scholar from Petersburg, VA, this guy has planted his feet firmly on the road to the success. With a nearly 4 octave vocal range, his deeply personal music crosses the lines of R&B, soul, experimental, hip-hop, pop & jazz. A two-time graduate of Virginia State University, TeDarryl holds degrees in communications, drama & media management. Impressive, right?

A seasoned performer of both stage & screen, he recently garnered praise for his role as the spastic George Sinclair in the independent film When, Where, How  and aside from starring in the YouTube web-series Everyday’s A Saturday can been seen as a regular guest on Crystal Johnson’s #TheOtherCrystal vlog series on YouTube. His past theatrical credits include roles in productions of The Wiz, Fences, Our Town, Smokey Joe’s Café, Malcolm Martin & Medgar, Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Cinderella and many more.

First of all…let’s backtrack for a minute. Because I’m absolutely in LOVE with George Sinclair. Check him (TeDarryl) out!

But that’s not all! TeDarryl is also the co-founder of SOCIETY Arts, which is a non-profit arts mentoring program for youth ages 11-17 to expose them to the arts as both a way of creative expression and possible career path. So basically, TeDarryl luhs the kids.

Just this month, the talented artist released his debut musical effort titled Dark Liquor.  A sonic mix of R&B, hip hop, experimental pop and poetry, ‘Dark Liquor’ is a confessional album chronicling the artist’s past three years in love, heartbreak and the journey to overcoming the demise of a relationship…with the aid of a little dark liquor. Written chiefly by TeDarryl, ‘Dark Liquor’ features appearances by up-and-coming artists Kimani Amor, Be’Udi Adair and Du’Vee.

So let just talk about how “Facing the Gun” gives me Jill Scott vibes, while “Nai’s Lament” gives me 90’s Bad Boy interlude. THEN “Questions” is serving old school Tweet…but here, just click this link and see for yourself.

But, wait. Before you get knee deep in TeDarryl’s amazing tunes, check out my interview with the rising star.

1.       Which artist do you think inspired you most throughout your life?

I’m really inspired by powerful, innovative women. Everyone from Joni Mitchell to Jill Scott to Madonna to TLC, but I’d have to say the artist that has inspired me the most in my life has been Janet Jackson. To me, she’s a genius. I remember when I was about 3 years old and seeing the “If” video for the first time and being in awe of her effortless power. She’s so underrated as a vocal arranger, and a lyricist and producer and a musical visionary. So many people pay attention to the dancing and the theatrics but I was always drown in by how interesting her music sounded. The music is always unapologetically black, unapologetically “grease” but with a major pop appeal and sensibility. That’s what I aim to do with my music. The layering, the melodies, how she uses her voice as an instrument to set a mood. Even down to things like song sequencing  on her albums. Listen to how the Rhythm Nation album perfectly thematically flows from song to song and even sets you up for the janet. album! And let me not get started on her as an actress! As you can see, I could go on and on about how much she has impacted me and my art.   


2.       What makes the creative scene in VA (Richmond/Petersburg) unique?

The creative scene in the 804 is so unique because there are so many different types of creatives around. I know so many dope singers and rappers and visual artists and writers. Everybody has their own lane and niche, yet there is so much love and support and as an artist trying to go to the next level, that’s so needed. Even the hood rappers show love. That’s dope.


3.       What do you think makes YOU unique?

I believe what makes me unique as an artist is my self-awareness and willingness to give myself. When you listen to my music, it’s all me. There’s straight forward, honest lyrics with fun melodies and moody layering. There are hints of humor and sensitivity and an underlying sense of sensuality and sex. My music is both very confident and very insecure; as I think we all are as people. My goal with my art is to present my personal stories in the hopes that people can see themselves in them. I think that’s what people enjoy about me and what makes me unique as an artist; I’m not afraid to put my feelings on display. I’m not here to just make cute songs because I have the talent, I wanna go a step further and give realness.   


4.       What do you hope people remember about you when you’re long gone?

When I’m long gone, I want people to remember that my goal in life was to make people feel. Whether I made you laugh or cry or think or happy or upset, I wanna give a genuine experience. I want to be remembered as a person who loved art and knowledge and was interested in providing it everywhere I went.  Also, I feel like I’m a good ass time and I’m sure my laugh will haunt so many people when I’m gone.


5.       Where do you see yourself in the next 5 years or where do you hope to be?

In 5 years, I want to at least have a Grammy and Emmy under my belt, on a television show that people are connecting with and touring around the world. Maybe doing more films. I’m a lover at heart as well, so maybe married to the guy I write all these sad songs about and starting a family isn’t out of the question either.   

Well I ain’t mad at ya boo. I think all of us want to be married to the guy of our dreams sooner than later. But until then, check out some footage from behind the scenes of “Dark Liquor”.

Oh, and one last thing, to keep up with you new favorite person on social media, follow him here.

Trust me, you’ll laugh until your stomach hurts. Thank me later.


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