Summer Sensations 2010: Range
Range is the newest talent to sign with the Star Roc/Roc Nation family. An emerging singer, songwriter and producer discovered by the stellar Stargate duo, he was nicknamed “Range” by his father to encourage him to be limitless.
Born in Philadelphia and raised in Hartford, Connecticut from the age of eight, Range moved to New York City after graduating from college with a degree in business. “I’ve been into music since I was a kid,” the 24-year-old explains. “First I was into rap, but when I was 12 I began taking saxophone lessons. From that point, it was all about my music.”
By chance, Range was introduced to Connecticut-based producer Troy Oliver, who had worked with Jennifer Lopez (“Jenny From The Block”) and Ginuwine (“Differences”). “I was a raw talent who had bought a keyboard, because I was tired of waiting for people to make tracks for me,” laughs Range, who’s currently listening to a lot of Sting and Aretha Franklin. “Troy helped me to focus in the studio and how to make music the right way. Some songs take two hours while others can take two weeks; there is no formula to making music.”
Having written songs for Jamie Foxx (“Cover Girl”) Ludacris (“One More Drink) and T-Pain (“Down Low’), Range also collaborated with Diddy on a Danity Kane track. It was while working with hitmakers Track Masters that Range first met Stargate. “We were at Battery Studios and Stargate was working right next door,” Range recalls.
After his manager Randy Parker arranged a meeting between Range and the seasoned pros, the Stargate team was immediately impressed. “We wrote one song together and they signed me right away.”
Currently preparing material for his Star Roc/Roc Nation debut, Range feels he is constantly furthering his education in the rhythmic science of music. “I’m learning how to play guitar, as well as studying how to engineer a record,” says Range. “Right now, I am constantly inspired.”
In addition, Range is also working with Ne-Yo and Ryan Leslie. “Those guys are geniuses at what they do. They’ve made working on this project that much more exciting.”
Encouraged by his schoolteacher mother, who also was the choir director at their church, Range was enrolled in the Hartford Conservatory when he was 12. “My mom played cello and sang, so I guess I got that from her,” he says. “I played in different churches and schools. I even did a show at Disney World. Musically, I was into everything from Whitney Houston to Elvis to the Notorious B.I.G.”
While Range’s mother influenced him musically, his father encouraged him in different ways. “My father owns a nursing home in Georgia and through him, I learned that business makes the world go round,” Range states. “I was still doing my music daily, but I was also aware that a degree could come in handy.”
Still close to his dad, whom he talks to at least once a week, Range attributes his love of poetry to his dad as well. “He bought me a poetry book called Light in the Attic that turned me on to the power of language. My father is the wisest man I know. I’m also really good at math because of him.”
With his heart and mind focused on the future, Range looks forward to traveling the world once given the opportunity. “I’ve been to different places in America, but I never been out of the country,” Range explains. “I really want to go to Egypt. There is so much culture there. I can’t wait to see how going to different countries will affect my skills as a writer and producer.” Spoken like a true artist.
View Range in our Summer Sensations 2010 Lookbook.
Listen to Range’s debut single “Ghetto Dance” with Rick Ross: