The baddest R&B chicks are known to roll with an entourage or at least a bodyguard or two, but Cherlise does it a little differently. The 23-year-old singer gets her support from her nine brothers and sisters—”All from the same parents!”—she playfully adds. Hailing from just outside Miami, Cherlise knows about the party life but credits her family for keeping her grounded, even after being signed to Rico Love’s Division1/Universal Republic imprint and having Fat Joe (“He’s the biggest teddy bear”) as her mentor.
“What’s great about having all the siblings is that I have a whole basketball team looking out for me,” Cherlise tells Rap-Up.com. “The support I get has taught me how to love unconditionally.”
All the love seems to be pouring into the studio though, as the tenacious songstress admits that the hustle is romance in itself, making it hard for her to pursue relationships. “I’m not really in a place to get involved right now,” she admits. “I’m realistic with myself and I don’t have the energy and time. I love really hard and fall really hard. Guys have a hard time committing when they haven’t realized their dream when they’re not where they want to be. I’m like a guy in that way. When I get there, only then can I invest.”
While she waits on that payout, Cherlise is drawing in devotion from an audience that has gotten a taste of her style. “The general tone and mood of my debut album is going to be straight with no chaser,” says the confident chanteuse.
There are soulful ballads on the album that will familiarize the masses with her tone and range, as well as more upbeat joints clearly influenced by her favorites—Whitney Houston, Mariah Carey, and Michael Jackson.
Her debut single, “Love U Right” featuring Lil Wayne, is a huge and humbling deal for the newcomer. While stunned at what an incredible opportunity it was to work with the rap icon so early in her career, recording the track made her feel secure in her company. “It just reminds me that the people I’m surrounded by have faith in me.”