Stephanie Wallace is everything from a pin to an anchor when it comes to the performing arts and music industry, not to mention a literary author, mother and businesswoman. Can you possibly imagine for master of time management?
She was born and grew up in Linstead, St Catherine, Jamaica. There she found her support for singing began growing from a young age and fed her confidence and increased her courage to aspire to be a unique styled artist. She always knew she wanted to be a singer and writer since she was a child; the journey to live her dream thus started.
Journey to Her Dream
The lover of life went to Queen’s High School in Kingston where she was involved in the Performing Arts Society Chorale and the school choir. While still attending high school she became a member of the Steele Force, a cabaret band. Becoming a force to be reckoned with as a Principal performer at The Ashe Company, where she trained in voice, dance, and musical theatre. Stephanie honed her talent as a singer through these experiences, singing vocals alongside international and local artists alike; six months with Basque’s Fermin Muguruza was her most memorable experience yet. Through Muguruza’s world tour she unlocked her ability to sing in Basque, English, French, and Spanish. She also toured with Chaka Demus and Pliers, Groundation and Cocoa Tea.
Stephanie always felt she had a calling to pursue a career in the music industry, and although she was to read for her Bachelor of Science in Sociology at the University of the West Indies, after three years of deferring, she answered the call. She shortly thereafter decided to start her journey chasing her dream career as an artiste full time.
“I have been and continue to live the dream of being a recording artist, songwriter, producer and author – all while growing my entertainment company Havatio Music.” – Stephanie Wallace with The Caribbean Current.
She lead a group with Chantelle Ernandez and Scantana called UNITZz and released ‘J Paradise’ and ‘J Lovers’, two studio albums, with Sly & Robbie for Sony Music Japan in 2009. Their talents earned more notoriety when they had one song( A Lady Antebellum cover song, Need You Now) on an album by Sly & Robbie, the album was nominated in the reggae category for the 53rd Grammy Awards in 2011. Stephanie later went solo to develop her talents as a singer while immersing herself into other possible career paths.
The singer’s take on reggae comes uniquely with fusions of diverse genres like soul, dancehall, pop, and R&B. The overall reception from her audience, when it comes to her ambitious singing career, has come in the form of many blessings for the Scorpio; she admits that her supporters are simply the best.
Stephanie became a self-proclaimed producer when she founded her own production company ‘Havatio Music’. Through this company, she launched her debut EP ‘Real Woman’ and the album ‘The Christmas Collection’ in February and November 2013, respectively. In 2015 she released another album entitled ‘Catharsis’. ‘Catharsis’ debuted with kind contributions from the likes of producers Collin York, Micheal Sean Harris, Dynasty Records/Loud City Music (Seattle), Ranoy Gordon (Jamaica), Wicked Vybz (Massachusetts) and Phantom (Switzerland).
She staged and directed the Gungo Walk World Alternative Music and Arts Festival with a group of music professionals. She is currently under Blacklight Records, and in June 2017 she was the opening act for reggae artist Peter Lloyd while on her United States Tour. She is also promoting her new single “Shades of Grey” and prepping to go back on promotional tours.
Stephanie fell in love with reading as a child and was what many would call a ‘bookworm’. She identified mostly with the arts through the characters in the books and would often escape into the imaginary worlds of the stories. She found herself excelling in her academics – especially in the areas of Creative Writing and English Literature – as a result.
Stephanie took her passion a step further and added music into the mix; she not only wrote her songs, but songs for Rebel America Inc. and songs for television shows, international ad campaigns, movies, labels and the list goes on. She has written songs for the United Kingdom reality show ‘Jeremy Kyle Show’, Lifetime TV’s ‘Dance Moms Miami’, and the MTV reality series ‘MADE’. So, she knows a thing or two about writing music.
“[From the book I want readers] to love themselves firstly and unconditionally, to forgive themselves for who they used to be, to release people from the prison of anger and disappointment and allow them to live from their own consciousness all while choosing how and where they fit in your life. To be brave and unapologetic and to be their beautiful, amazing, dynamic selves. To be empowered by their experiences, the good and the not so good.” – Stephanie Wallace with The Caribbean Current.
Despite her busy schedule, Stephanie finds the time to not only write professionally for the music industry but took an introspective look at her writing style, and thus the idea of being an author blossomed. At first, she said, singing took the spotlight, but she still stayed connected to her writing through blogging and doing ‘morning pages’ and eventually she wrote her first book. Stephanie encourages women to find their mode of expression – with regards to writing and finding their voice – and utilize it. She intends to get involved in mentorship in the future.
“My advice would be to immerse themselves in their stories, whether fiction or nonfiction, so they can find the truth in what they are trying to convey, and put it on the pages so their work will not only be unforgettable but impacting.” – Stephanie Wallace with The Caribbean Current.
In June 2017 she published her first book ‘Diary of The Scorpion Lover’. The book, targeting readers eighteen years and older, has captured readers who can appreciate the literature of a new author. The book mainly reflects on her twenties and how this period was a roller coaster. It is about a young woman navigating the various relationships in her life be it personal, social, or within family and how amidst the joys and pains she becomes who she is supposed to be. Diary of The Scorpion Lover is available on Amazon, Createspace and Amazon Kindle for US $9.99 and Bookophilia in Jamaica.
“The book gives a raw and honest look into very intimate and impacting experiences, hence the Diary. Also, the intensity and passion with which these relationships are interpreted draws on said attributes of the Scorpio star sign and also the physical characteristics of the scorpion.” – Stephanie Wallace with The Caribbean Current.
The support she has received exceeded her expectations as even supporters of her music have happily joined her on her literary journey as an author. She has experienced good vibes and reviews in all aspects of her different voyages, especially with her author cap on, as her readers have even shared their stories and commended her courage for becoming a literature contributor.
The buzz of its release has kept her definitely occupied and she reaps experience through readings of excerpts from Diary of A Scorpion Lover at various book events across Jamaica. While she is confined to Jamaica at the moment, she intends for her book to take off with the debut of an international book tour, which will be combined with her music tours. Stephanie definitely has many aspiring plans for her book.
“It would be amazing to have my first book on the New York Times bestseller listing. More importantly, I would like this book to reach as many young adults as possible so it can help them understand some of the challenges they may be facing/will face, and how to flip the script and change the narrative to one of power.” – Stephanie Wallace with the Caribbean Current.
She reveals her first book launch is only the beginning as she is currently working on another manuscript for her second book along with a few additional literary projects.
“Watch out world, a best-selling author has been born.” – Stephanie Wallace with The Caribbean Current.
All in All Go-Getter
While Stephanie is a multi-talented creative force, she is just like everyone else, accomplishing their goals and progressing through life. She enjoys watching TV, movies and of course reading. She appreciates the writing style of Lisa Kleypas and loves the Caribbean author Michael Holgate.
Stephanie is mostly influenced by her daughters. Her mothering capabilities of two beautiful children strengthen daily and she is forever grateful for having the responsibility of being their mother.
“I don’t think it was a mistake that I got to mother two amazing Queens in training. Their very existence has called me up higher and magnified everything I am and do. I am a better woman because of my girls.” – Stephanie Wallace with The Caribbean Current.
Her most urgent priority for the rest of the year and onward is to be the best mother she can be, to launch her book tour and also continue her music tour – with her determination and perseverance that should not be hard at all.
“[My goals are] to be a successfully touring singer, to be a best-selling author, and most importantly, to continue being an exceptional mother to my girls and soon enough find my Mr-Right-For-Me.” – Stephanie Wallace with The Caribbean Current.
Our experiences shape us into the persons we are and through these experiences, we learn lessons that stay with us through life. Stephanie attributes her best learning experience to premature decisions she made in love, but nonetheless, the same lessons have afforded her the best moments for personal growth.
“Continue to follow my artistic journey and watch as another daughter of the rock spreads her wings and achieves excellence. I’m always grateful for your support.” – Stephanie Wallace with The Caribbean Current.
By Alexandra Daley