Every artist needs his muse, and for R&B and soul musician Richie Carter, that muse is his fiancé Jazzie. She’s not only the inspiration behind his most recent single “Dark Hearts” but also the impetus for his return to music after a hiatus.
Their story is a unique one. It begins in childhood when they knew each other in school, but it got its real start at the funeral for Carter’s mother about a year-and-a-half ago. It was at that funeral where he bumped into Jazzie unexpectedly. And though they were mourning, the sparks were immediately flying and the chemistry was evident. Though they had grown up together, Richie had moved to Southern California to pursue music professionally and they lost touch. But when they ran into each other while Richie was back in town, they realized how much they wanted to be together. That meeting has been a whirlwind relationship but one that has been full of triumphs and inspiration for this up-and-coming artist.
“Admittedly, the first six months were a rough start,” Carter says of the relationship with Jazzie, “and not just because my mother had just passed. I was drinking and partying a lot and I sucked her through that. We almost didn’t make it. But one night we just sat down and decided to get our shit together and work it out, and it’s been great since then. That moment was definitely an eye-opener and put stuff into perspective, but our relationship is stronger because of it.”
It’s that sentiment and deep emotional bond that Carter displays to the world with his song “Dark Hearts.” It’s the first song he wrote for Jazzie and it tells the story of how much distance had grown between them – first physically, with his move to California, then emotionally, during the rough patches of their relationship. It explores the hidden details of what Carter most appreciates about her in a way that he said has already been connecting with a wide range of fans all over the globe.
“It’s a sweet song and I’ve already gotten great feedback from everyone who’s heard it,” he said. “I’m overwhelmed by the feedback. Jazzie and I have a really weird dynamic – she’s more into cars and fixing things and jeans and t-shirts, and I wear suits to work and I’m into cooking and cleaning. It’s the exact opposite of the roles that most people think of for a stereotypical relationship. We don’t look like we should but we’re really good together. And I think that’s the thing that people are connecting with – that every relationship has its imperfections, but that’s what makes them unique and true. Everybody can relate to that.”
Richie and Jazzie had planned to get married earlier this year but the onset of COVID-19 threw a wrench into their plans and they’ve decided to delay until early next year. In the meantime, they’re about to welcome a new baby girl to the family. Carter said he knows the next couple of years will be dominated by raising their child together, but he’s also looking forward to developing new music. He and Jazzie are in the process of building a new house, and he’s creating a home studio from which he can “dream and create whatever I want.”
“I have a lot of music already recorded, too,” he said. “I even have a 10-track album that I made before that hasn’t been released yet. I’m probably going to release it later this year. It’s called ‘8:15’ and it’s inspired by my home town of Rockford. There will be more music coming in the future for sure.”
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