When the second season of BET’s Sunday Best was on, I made it abundantly clear that my favorite contestant was Jessica Reedy. Never get it twisted, though– I also looooove the voices and ministries of several of the other contestants, like (of course) winner Y’Anna Crawley, Latice Crawford, Dontavies Boatwright, John John, Camille Betton… but from jump, Jess just… shocked me.
And I wasn’t alone cuz I know a bunch of y’all adore her, too… which is why I reached out and said “let’s talk again and tell the people what you’ve been up to!” So, here we are!
Friends, here’s our buddy, Jessica Reedy:
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EJ: How have you been, sister?!
JR: I’ve been wonderful! I really have.
EJ: You sound happy.
JR: Thank you. I am!
EJ: I’m so glad to be chattin’ with you. Last time we talked for the website, you were in total shock over the fact that so many people enjoyed you so much. You still amazed?
JR: I’m still shocked. I’m shocked that people still remember me.
EJ: Still remember you?! It was only four months ago.
JR: Yeah, but there’s so much new stuff going on. And I don’t have anything out to keep your mind refreshed, so it still amazes me.
EJ: I hear that. I wanna re-visit Sunday Best for just a quick second. The night of the finale, you’re at home with your family in Saginaw, watching the whole thing. Did you know the results before Kirk Franklin announced them?
JR: No, I didn’t. They taped two endings, so me and Yannie both were waiting to see which ending they played.
EJ: Yep. I dunno if you saw the blogs and heard the commentary on radio, but fans of the show lashed out at BET. They thought the competition was rigged, they said the finale wasn’t good, they said the results were known before that night, but you’re saying that the first time you heard anything was with the rest of the nation?
JR: The first time I heard anything. And the crazy thing is that the local news decided to be at my house, to catch my first reaction. I had no clue. What we did know was who would be the last two, but once we got home, that was it. We didn’t know anything else.
EJ: Okay. So, you didn’t know what would happen… Kirk announces Y’Anna as the winner. What was your immediate reaction?
JR: I told Yannie this– I knew God had blessed me, but I sort of expected my flesh to be a sore loser. I had no bad feelings… I was so happy for her, to the point that it shocked me AND my family.
JR: But I had no kind of bad feelings because I knew how good God had been to me already. And to feel something stupid like that would be such an insult to God, in my opinion. And it shocked the heck outta me– all I could do was smile.
And my cousin was like “it’s alright,” and I was like “it IS alright.” *laughing*
EJ: You’re a good-hearted person. I dunno if everyone would be as kind about that.
JR: I couldn’t find another person who is more deserving. She’s a kind-hearted person. You know, she has two kids. She has a boy, in a minute, he’ll be in college. And here I am, I just turned 21. At the time, I was 20 years old. God has so much more for me than I can even imagine. Yannie’s what…32? Lord, bless HER. I’ll take the backseat– I can’t believe I’m in the top 2 anyway, so I’ll take that. I don’t mind.
EJ: And the beauty of televised competitions like Sunday Best is that, once you’re in the top two, each finalist is pretty much set to get SOMETHING.
People haven’t heard too much about you on a NATIONAL scale since Sunday Best ended, but I know that you’ve been quite busy– tell us what you’ve been up to.
JR: Awww, man. God’s been good. He’s been telling people to call me! *laughs*
EJ: *laughing* Yep!
JR: He’s been giving people a desire to wanna hear me some more, so churches have been calling me, pastors… just people who want me to come to anything they might be having.
They fly me out, which is amazing! It’s like… God will bless me like THAT?! I’m grateful. I’m so grateful. I can’t believe it because singing is something I do all the time. And you wanna pay me to come and do it?!
EJ: That’s awesome.
JR: And I’m grateful. They do more than they have to… they’ll say “do you want to go to the movies,” or “do you want to go shopping?” I’m like “wow,” and my manager reminds me “they don’t do this for everybody.” So, it’s another confirmation from God, like “Jessica, you’re on the right track.”
EJ: Ok, so the big question that’s on everyone’s mind– when can we expect some music from you?
JR: Okay. Now, I’m working extremely hard to get some leniency on my contracts. Right now, I cannot record.
EJ: You can’t record because of your contract with BET?
JR: Nothing. Right now, they’re allowing me to travel, but that’s all I can do. So, I’m praying!
EJ: Well, I’ll make sure we get to prayin’ too! Because people want something. Badly.
JR: Really? See, that’s amazing to me!
EJ: Oh, absolutely. Folks are going crazy over the few YouTube videos of you that are up.
JR: Oh my goodness. Honestly, I look at all of this as a blessing in disguise. God won’t leave me. He reminds me “Jessica, I brought you from the bottom and raised you to runner-up, among thousands.”
And this down time has gotten me to a point where my relationship with the Lord has grown even more. It’s making me find more within myself, even creative ideas, so that when I do get out of the contract, I’ll know what I want to do.
EJ: True. And this is good down time. I often think of “down time” as an awesome time for God to prepare us and work on our character, work on those things we didn’t even know were issues.
EJ: Do me a favor, and I think I speak for all of your supporters. TRY YOUR BEST to re-make Kirk’s “Brighter Day” for your debut album, with the same arrangement that you had on Sunday Best.
EJ: I’m serious. Cuz we NEED to be able to listen to that whenever we want it. Deal?
JR: That’s a deal. I promise.
But you know what? There’s a compilation album that we all did– the top 10. And that’s the song that they chose for me to do on the album. It’s not the exact arrangement, but it’s sweet… it’s nice. I honestly like the original arrangement that I did on the show, though.
EJ: That’s what you HAVE to do. And if you have to go back to watch the YouTube clips so you can remember what you did, do that.
EJ: *laughing* Okay, let’s see… you’re on Twitter now, so people can connect with you socially there (http://www.twitter.com/jessicareedy). But how can people book you if they want to get you for an event?
JR: Contact my manager, Phil Thorton, at 323-937-3700. And email firstname.lastname@example.org. You’ll get a response in NO time, I promise. I won’t make people wait. I’ve got no time to waste. *laughing*
EJ: Well, you already know that I think the world of you and your voice. I continue to wish you all the best. I appreciate you, sis. Thanks for touching base.
JR: Thank you. I really appreciate this, EJ.
EJ: No doubt. And we’ll talk soon.
JR: Okay then. You take care.
EJ: You too. Bye-bye.
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Ain’t that crazy that she’s locked into her contract and can’t record for us the glory of God?! Geeeeez. But it’s great to know that she’s doing well and making the most of her time, giggin’ and what not. Good job!
Oh, and just for kicks, here’s that awesome performance of “Brighter Day” that we all loved so much: