We had the good fortune of connecting with William LaVant and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi William, what role has risk played in your life or career?
Hmmm Risks… when I think of risks I automatically think of preparing yourself to handle the absolute worst outcome that could possibly happen because that’s exactly what you have to be ready for when taking risks, but at the same time have hope. Taking risks is a huge part of what and who I am as a creative, some things when it comes to music, fashion, even the videos I release on YouTube, it’s all about taking risks only now I take strategic risks. Starting out not really knowing too much of anything about the entertainment industry I was always ready to release a song, or make certain connects with many greats in the industry. I wasn’t thinking about the risks I’d be taking financially, emotionally, mentally. Now I know it’s not worth taking unnecessary risks, when it comes to different projects we want to do, make sure you have a steady following of people that want to see you succeed, even if they don’t want to see you succeed the bottom line is that they SEE you and what you’re doing. It’s so many different avenues I can take on talking about risks but just always prepare yourself for the worst outcome while having hope.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
This entire journey in the industry even at the young age I am for the time being, definitely isn’t easy, never was easy, and will get no easier. As hard as we work for the stuff we want, just when we finally seem to get in the place we’ve been working so hard to get to, life says “alright enjoy your earnings for a little time because it will be time to say goodbye to it all soon”, that’s where I realize 9 times out of 10 it’s a great honor if you get to enjoy the fruits of your labor, but it’s what you have accomplished that out lives you to inspire the generations to come after you. That’s my entire life as a creative in a nutshell. So whatever you leave on this earth make sure it’s to leave a positive impact for the lives to come.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Well let’s see… my city Jacksonville, Florida never really has much going on if a celebrity concert isn’t in town or if the Jaguars aren’t playing a home game. Then it all depends on which friend I’m with, which I have very few of. But I’d simply hit the movies or we’ll meet up at a eatery, or go bowling, or skating (no I can’t skate) I just love the company of being around others especially those my age if not a little younger to keep others motivated.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I will definitely pay tribute to my Grandfather the great (Pastor William LaVant II) whom started me singing, and singing publicly as a child, and if he asks you to sing on multiple occasions then you can really sing, he would always tell you the truth. I miss him very much. I thank my predestined family Grandmother (Mamie G. Coleman), Grandpa (James Coleman), Ma (Rosalind Coleman- LaVant), Auntie (Jackie Coleman-LaVant), Cousin (Esther Coleman) for keeping me in church, active in my community from a young age (which doesn’t happen too often in the present day with some families) they also kept me out of trouble and literally saved my life from what it could’ve been. I thank God for them as I call them my earth angels. Now giving honor to my biological mother (Diana Jones) definitely taught me about the more realistic side of life, that yes you will have ups and downs but at the end of the day never let any person run over you, I come from a family of leaders that played no games, and she will forever be that champion in my life. Fun fact: It’s always been an honor to have my own personal hair stylist growing up even til this day, nobody braids my hair like my mom. (Miracle Hands INC.) My biological dad (William Lavant III) which is definitely where I get my artistic side as far as graphic design, drawing, just being an all around creative, I love him and my only 2 biological brothers so much. (Sammy & Isaiah) I definitely can’t leave out my O’Neal side of my family, now when it comes to music, singing, etc. it’s so many different genres you would hear and they are my balance concerning me as far as an artist. My aunties, cousins, uncles can all literally SANG!! It’s so many I can thank and it would take me forever and a lifetime to thank EVERYONE individually. If you’re reading this, Know that I love you and you are highly appreciated.
Eli Elmore Christopher Bailey