• Tallie Spencer

'The Four' winner Evvie McKinney uses her music to uplift and inspire

"Bring the Whole Hood" is an inspirational new single that serves as a reminder to stay true to who you are.

If Evvie Mickinney seems like a familiar face, then that's because you may remember her as the Season 1 winner of FOX's TV show "The Four: Battle to Stardom."

On the show, she performed each week in front of celebrity judges and quickly rose to be the fan favorite through her soulful voice and energetic performances. The singer recently

signed to Motown Gospel/Capitol CMG and released a new song called"Bring the Whole Hood," which was co-written with Meghan Trainor.

"Bring the Whole Hood" is an inspirational new single that serves as a reminder to stay true to who you are. The upbeat tune is a perfect harmony that shows off Evvie's vocal skills and range, and truly solidifies her as an artist who's dedicated.

In a recent interview with Remixd Magazine, Evvie said that her upbringing definitely played a role in developing her sound and helping her make the decision to pursue a career in music.

"That 'feel good; Memphi- soul and Gospel music I listened to my whole childhood gave me a rich, tasteful perspective on what real music felt and sounded like," Evvie said during the interview. " If it wasn’t for a supportive and spiritual mother and father, I don’t know where I’d be."

Continue reading to learn more about Evvie and her music journey.

What city are you from and where are you based now?

I’m from Memphis, Tennessee, but I currently live in Nashville, Tennessee.

At what point in your life did you decide to pursue a career in music? Ever since I was aware that I had a conscience, I knew that God would bless me with a music career. Even at the age of four and five, I had high hopes and unshakeable faith in that. I loved music too much to ever doubt God’s ability to come through for me.

Has your upbringing played a role in shaping who you are and defining your sound today? If so, how?

My upbringing has tremendously helped to shape and mold the young woman I’ve developed into today. Because of my upbringing, I’ve kept my core values at the forefront of my journey which makes being an inspirational artist even more enjoyable.

How would you describe your sound to readers who may not be familiar with you? What genre does it fit into best?

To listeners who may not be familiar with me, I’d describe my sound as positive, uplifting, and inspirational music. My music is a beautiful mix of R&B, Soul, Pop, and Inspirational songs.

What ultimately inspired you to dedicate yourself to a music career?

Ultimately, it was my father’s death in 2005 that inspired me to solely focus on dedicating myself to my music. I was just 8-years-old when my father passed and all I remembered were the good, positive words he would speak over my life. I was about 7-years-old when my dad told me “you’re gonna be the next Alicia Keys”. I believed him. After he died, I knew I had to manifest what my father saw in me. What’s one reason you are passionate about music and what inspires you to make it?

One reason why I’m so passionate about music is because it’s a gift, not only to me, but to the rest of the world. We all have pretty amazing gifts and what makes each of our gifts so special is the fact that they can help other people. The frustrating times that we’re living in today inspires me to write and record uplifting music. I also write about how I feel personally convicted to help inspire other people who may be in need of spiritual mentoring and uplifting.

Who are some of your main musical influences?

My main musical influences are Tina Turner and Aretha Franklin. I grew up listening to their music! What are some of your music career goals for the future?

Of course, I would love to have a No. 1 record on Billboard, perform at major award shows like the Grammy’s, to win a Grammy would be AMAZING, collaborate with world-renown artists like Tasha Cobbs, Tye Tribbett, and Meghan Trainor. And I wouldn’t mind becoming a Disney princess! Tell us about your latest single "Bring the Whole Hood." What is it about?

I just released my debut single, “Bring the Whole Hood” on May 29th, which is co-written by Meghan Trainor. This song is my autobiography and it gives the listener a much better idea of who I am, where I come from, and where I’m going.

What was the inspiration behind that project? And what has the response been like so far?

The concept of “Bring the Whole Hood” came from a session I had with Meghan Trainor, and I told her that I wanted to write a song about my life, my family, and my city (Memphis). “Hood” is short for neighborhood, and in the chorus of the song I say, "When I make it, I’ma bring the whole hood with me." I say that to say that I will never forget where I come from because the hood I grew up in was full of love and they supported my dreams. So far, my song has done numbers already! In the first week, my lyric video has over 130K VIEWS on YouTube. Apple music added me to the Brown Sugar Playlist; Pandora and Spotify have also added me to their Gospel playlists!

What’s next for you? Are you working on any upcoming projects we should be on the lookout for? I’m planning to release a few more singles before dropping my EP later this year! Please stay tuned and follow me at @Evvie_Music for more details. What message do you hope fans take away from your music? When the listener hear my music, I want them to hear and feel a higher power. I want them to feel inspired; I want my supporters to feel empowered to tackle the impossible. I want my listeners to be uplifted in the blessings of life. I want them to focus more on being grateful for what you have so that it opens the doors to receive more. My music includes everyone and calls everyone to be themselves just the way they are intended to be. There is freedom in peace and in love. That, my friend, is inspiration!

Listen to "Bring the Whole Hood," below.