Erykah Officer: Ery’s Diary is Real, Raw and Relatable
With another year wrapping up, we’ve begun to reminisce on the excellence that was thrust upon us in music. R&B as a genre witnessed a plethora of stunning releases. One in particular worthy of being in the conversation is Erykah Officer’s newest EP, Ery’s Diary.
Erykah Officer is an alluring singer and songwriter from Florida who has become an artist to be highly aware of. She’s equipped with one of the more powerful voices and radiant auras you’ll find. Every record in her catalog feels like a statement of sorts to the continued evolution of a captivating singer.
If you’re familiar, Erykah is also a member of the CXR cohort; Comprised of her and the exciting artists, Chris Patrick & Dende. As a trio they form one of the dominant coalitions in music. CXR recently released their first compilation project, Before The Summer’s Over, which allowed them to show why they are a formidable group. Coming off this high, it was only right for the spotlight to stay in the family as solo musicians; Enter Erykah Officer.
Her newest EP, Ery’s Diary, arrives at a time when the R&B scene has been questioned but she delivers a phenomenal project narrating the beauty, flaws and defects of romance. A diary is filled with personal thoughts typically reserved for “self” but the Florida songstress has made it known she’s ready to share her deepest notions with the masses.
Erykah’s vulnerability is a major highlight to the beauty of the EP. There’s an insightful and seductive element displayed that will make you gravitate towards it. Her vocal arrangements paired with the dark ambience throughout creates a distinctive imagery of emotions.
Each record feels like a chapter to a heartfelt novel. Doctors Orders is descriptive and beyond tasteful. It’s one of the records that stands out.
The elite songwriting throughout the EP assists in providing a glimpse into the authenticity of Erykah’s mind.
One of the amazing parts about Ery’s Diary is the simplicity in its relatability. There is an intentional level of lyricism emphasized, for example, on records like Close to Angels, GLS and 2 Week Notice that allow listeners to easily feel as if the EP could be their story being narrated whilst also showcasing her vocal range.
It was a privilege being able to talk with Erykah Officer about her continued growth as a musician along with Ery’s Diary. The conversation was candid as she opened up to discuss being vulnerable during the process of the EP, toxicity, the power of manifestation and much more.
Her interview is available below.
A Conversation w/ Erykah Officer
Cherry: I am here with a very special guest. Her exciting debut EP, Ery’s Diary just dropped so I’ll let her introduce herself and we’ll get right into it.
Erykah: I am Erykah Officer; Singer, Songwriter, Artist and Creative. I’m excited to be here.
Cherry: How are you feeling about the project now that it’s been released?
Erykah: I feel really good about it honestly. I’m super fulfilled. I took a lot of time with this project and brought many people into the process which I was nervous about because I’m a control freak. There’s not a portion of the EP I would do differently.
Cherry: How long did it take for you to decide you were ready to release this?
Erykah: With different situations that occurred, the date kept getting pushed back. Originally, I wanted to drop it around my birthday in May. We’ve been planning it since May of 2022. I’ve known since 2021 I wanted to drop a project though.
Cherry: How was the release party?
Erykah: The energy in the room was insane. I made sure to invite everyone [locally] that was apart of this process. We even recorded a song that night. It was important for me to have everybody there.
Ery’s Diary is a vulnerable part of me. I was nervous about how it was going to be received.
Cherry: Where did the inspiration come from? Is it based on your personal experiences or others around you?
Erykah: Mostly personal experiences. There are bits influenced by friends and my own family. Mainly different relationships of mine and what I’ve been through.
Cherry: Are you toxic?
Erykah: Am I? I wouldn’t say I am. I have older versions of myself that could be considered toxic but I’ve grown a lot. I’m glad that part of my life happened because it’s made me who I am today. I’m too focused on music now to be focused on anything that isn’t peace.
Cherry: What is Dark R&B?
Erykah: It’s more about what I was saying [on Ery’s Diary] vs how I was saying it. Channeling those intrusive thoughts most wouldn’t say out-loud and putting it into R&B.
Cherry: When it comes to recording, how do you like to record?
Erykah: To feel like i’ve given my best, i’m typically by myself in the booth. I was locked in a closet [recording] practically the entire process and it came out just as good if it was recorded in a studio. I like to be secluded so I can embody my emotions.
Cherry: How’d you get comfortable allowing many people into your process?
Erykah: It was definitely a challenge. There were moments I was uncomfortable. I had to strip away my ego and understand that everyone involved was trying to help. I appreciate constructive criticism and like challenging myself.
I used to journal my feelings and emotions a lot. That’s how we got the inspiration for the EP.
Cherry: Let’s take a step back. When did you know you wanted to take music seriously?
Erykah: Ever since I was a little girl, I knew this was what I wanted to do. It never left my spirit. I decided my sophomore year of college though that I was going to take it to the next level.
Cherry: Have you had a moment yet where it was put into perspective that “you’re here?”
Erykah: The way my life has played out, everything has happened so naturally. From meeting my main producer on the EP [Michael David] while I was in school to CXR stepping into my life. God has answered my prayers and I’ve been shown this is the path for me.
Cherry: Talking about CXR and them being a part of your growth, how’s everything been with the family?
Erykah: It’s been amazing. I’ve gained so many brothers I didn’t ask for. They’ve helped me a lot and it’s dope to have so many minds that are making sure I’m always on point and contributing. I’m super blessed.
Cherry: Do you manifest?
Erykah: I do. I try to manifest and meditate every morning. I write my manifestations down because words are powerful.
I’ve got a lot of visuals on the way for Ery’s Diary.
Cherry: If you could describe the EP to someone who hasn’t heard it, how would you?
Erykah: I’d say real, very raw and savage. There’s sweet songs on here too though.
Cherry: What was your favorite song to record?
Erykah: Probably Toxic Interlude? because the format was free-flowing. What i’m saying is fun too. Being able to channel that persona and also the way I was singing it. I got to show off my voice.
Cherry: Are you excited to be performing at Honeyland Fest? Where do you want to perform next year?
Erykah: Yes! Dende invited me. Huge shoutout to him because he always looks out. I’d love to do more festival shows. Depending on how the EP does, i’d love to do a local tour.
You’re in control of your own destiny. I’m super driven but sometimes I can get sidetracked. Me telling myself that helps me stay focused.
Cherry: What do you want your legacy to be?
Erykah: I want to be known for the quality of my work but also the way I treat people. Every artist I look up to relays that message. Keep your humbleness and kindness.