GRAMMY & Oscar Winner Tiara Thomas Shines In Her Own Spotlight On “Don’t Talk Back”

With slick production, heavenly vocals, and witty lyrics, Tiara Thomas is carving out a space for herself as a musical revolutionary, and the dreamy “Don’t Talk Back” is a triumphant step into a new chapter. It’s everything you’d want in a catchy R&B-pop song, offering fluttering melodies and a poignant bassline that’s destined to get stuck in your head.

“‘Don’t talk back’ could be a lot of different things,” Tiara tells TREMG. “In the song, it’s used in a sexy way, but can also be a flex like ‘Don’t Talk Back.’ I’m all for a sassy statement.”

Even this early in her career, Tiara is already making music history as the only Black female songwriter to have won both a GRAMMY and an Oscar. She co-wrote H.E.R.’s “I Can’t Breathe” in 2020, which went on to win the GRAMMY for Song of the Year, and H.E.R.’s “Fight For You” in 2021, which won the Oscar for Best Original Song after appearing in Judas and the Black Messiah. She’s quickly proving herself as a force to be reckoned with and a powerhouse when it comes to moving lyrics that tug at your heartstrings.

“2021 was a crazy year,” Tiara admits. “I’m grateful to have been a part of such moving music that reflected what so many were and are still going through. It was an honor being recognized for Song of the Year when there were so many dope songs in the category. And I never imagined winning an Oscar, but it really inspired me to step outside my comfort zone and be more experimental with my sound and just make the kind of music I wanted.”

Whether she’s helping soundtrack a movement or just making an anthem for fans to jam out to, anything you get from Tiara is guaranteed to be golden. Her relationship with her pen is the kind of love every hopeless romantic dreams about and the kind of mastery every budding artist wants to achieve.

“One of my favorite things about myself is, I’m very versatile,” Tiara explains. “When I’m working with other artists, I’m down to step into their world and adapt to the kind of vibe they want to create. I’ve written country songs, pop songs, R&B songs, rap songs, dance songs, etc. When I’m working by myself, I’m really experimental. Since I love so many different types of music, I put a bunch of different musical influences together and come up with my sound.”

You can find “Don’t Talk Back” on your favorite streaming services now, and get to know Tiara Thomas on Instagram, Twitter, and her website! Keep reading for more from our conversation with this dynamic singer-songwriter.

(c) Courtesy of Wackermann & Partners

Congratulations on your new single, “Don’t Talk Back!” How does it feel to finally share the song with the world?

Thanks! I’m really excited to finally be putting out new music. I wanted to lead with “Don’t Talk Back” because I think it’s different than what people expect to hear from me, and I like to go against the grain a little.

What does “Don’t Talk Back” mean to you?

“Don’t talk back” could be a lot of different things. In the song, it’s used in a sexy way, but can also be a flex like “Don’t Talk Back.” I’m all for a sassy statement.

Is there a certain lyric on “Don’t Talk Back” that you’re particularly proud of?

“Don’t talk back” is my favorite line of the song. It’s such a confident, in-your-face statement.

Image Source: Tiara Thomas

You’ve gotten quite the critical acclaim over the past few years, winning the GRAMMY for Song of the Year with H.E.R.’s “I Can’t Breathe” and an Oscar for Best Original Song with H.E.R.’s “Fight For You.” You’re notably the only Black female songwriter to have won both a GRAMMY and an Oscar – congratulations! What has it been like for you to receive that recognition, especially with such moving songs?

Thanks! 2021 was a crazy year. I’m grateful to have been a part of such moving music that reflected what so many were and are still going through. It was an honor being recognized for Song of the Year when there were so many dope songs in the category. And I never imagined winning an Oscar, but it really inspired me to step outside my comfort zone and be more experimental with my sound and just make the kind of music I wanted.

In addition to your work with H.E.R., you’ve collaborated with artists like Wale and Fat Joe! Is there anyone you’re hoping to get in the studio with soon?

I would love to write for Beyoncé and I love Drake. It would cool to work with either of them, but it would also be dope to write a song for a Disney movie.

How do you approach writing your own music compared to how you approach writing for another artist?

One of my favorite things about myself is, I’m very versatile. When I’m working with other artists, I’m down to step into their world and adapt to the kind of vibe they want to create. I’ve written country songs, pop songs, R&B songs, rap songs, dance songs, etc. When I’m working by myself, I’m really experimental. Since I love so many different types of music, I put a bunch of different musical influences together and come up with my sound.

How do you feel you’ve grown as an artist since your last solo release, 2019’s “So Necessary?” 

I think my pen has gotten a lot more solid. I’m more invested in the production process now. My friend Ron Gilmore produced the song and it was co-produced by me. He’s really musical and I’m really vibey so we’ve been able to create a really dope sound. I have other unreleased songs with him too. But I also think it’s a more sophisticated sound.

For anyone who isn’t familiar with your music already, which of your songs would you recommend to them to get a feel for who you are as an artist?

“Mary Jane” from my Up in Smoke EP is one of my favorite songs I’ve put out. They should also listen to my acoustic EP, Don’t Mention my Name

We at TREMG love getting to know new artists who haven’t gotten the success or attention they deserve. Who are some of your favorite underrated artists at the moment?

Me, Tiara Thomas.

What can your fans look forward to in the rest of 2022?

I’m looking forward to shooting a video for the single and maybe dropping another single before the year is up. Hopefully I can get back on the road soon.

One response to “GRAMMY & Oscar Winner Tiara Thomas Shines In Her Own Spotlight On “Don’t Talk Back””

  1. […] Throughout October, we got to talk to incredible artists like Malachi Gagnon, Lorelei Marcell, and Tiara Thomas about their new projects, but there’s a whole world of talent making their own waves. Here are […]

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