Where Would I Be Without My Music? – An Interview with Brent Faiyaz


Kyla Mitchell, Editor

“I don’t know where I would be if I wasn’t here,” says Christopher Brent Wood better known as Brent Faiyaz, a 24-year-old singer, songwriter from right here in Maryland. If you still don’t know, he is best known for his catchy and creative chorus in the Grammy nominated song “Crew”. Brent’s newest single released in September “Rehab” is one of many of the passionate songs he has created. His upcoming North America tour starting in March is only the beginning.

I had the pleasure of sitting down with Brent to dig deeper into the mind of this young R&B artist. I asked Brent to tell me a little about his background and how he got started with music. Brent responded: “I grew up in Columbia, Maryland. I started off making beats and at first I wanted to be a rapper. I wasn’t very good in school so most of my time went into music and it was like this all my life.”

A dream doesn’t become a reality until you go and pursue it so I asked Brent what advice would he give a high school student with a similar dream. “As cliché as it sounds, keep going. When you’re doing something and people say keep going you think they’re just saying that just because it sounds good but it’s because most people quit before they get to that point. Also take everything with a grain of salt. If someone tells you you’re incredible and amazing or if someone tells you your music is terrible and you need more work don’t feed into it because only you know what you really need to do.”

I then asked Brent what was his most embarrassing high school moment. Brent said, “My most embarrassing high school moment would have to be failing the 9th grade because everyone knew about it. Luckily, I ended up graduating on time from taking night school but I had to be in an English with everyone younger than me.”

I then wanted to know the meaning of his stage name Brent Faiyaz. “Well, Brent is my middle name and Faiyaz is Arabic meaning artistic and leader.” Brent, also part of a group called Sonder, has soulful original songs including “Too Fast” on their first album entitled “Intro”. “Sonder came about when I moved to LA. These producers, Dpat and Atu hit me up on Soundcloud; they came to LA for a show, we got in the studio for one session and the rest is history.”

Brent describes his music as soulful, honest and original. He says his best released song would have to be “Trust” released in 2018 on his EP “Lost” because “It sounds like nothing I have ever heard before. I loved the process of making it. My team touched this song more than any other record.”

Producing music is no easy routine. I asked Brent when making music what is his creative process. “It’s very fluid. I can go from not being in the studio for six months and then locking in for two weeks. I can walk into the studio with nothing done and write my songs when I get there or write on the plane or have lyrics in my phone. There’s no particular order; it all just depends.”

I asked Brent what artist would he like to collaborate with next. Brent responded: “The Neptunes. I would really love to work with Pharrell Williams and Chad Hugo because their story is really similar to mine. They were kids who wanted to make music forever and that’s what they ended up doing. We can really make some heat.”

Finally, when following your dream and going through the many obstacles life throws at you when can you finally say “I made it.” Brent responded: “I feel like you made it when you’re happy in all aspects. I don’t think it’s a financial goal or any goal that society tries to push on you. For someone, made it would mean getting married or starting a family but for others it might be having a million dollars. For me it’s being happy with whatever I got.”

Where would you be without your dream? For Brent, “Nowhere”.