Leah Jenea may not have won the second season of Fox’s The Four, but with her cover of Daniel Caesar’s “Best Part,” the singer established herself as a fan favorite and an artist to watch.
Often compared to music greats like Mary J. Blige and Michael Jackson, Jenea told ESSENCE that the comparisons “made me want to work harder. It also gave an optimism about my future in music.”
The singer has even earned Jill Scott’s seal of approval after the Philly singer-songwriter reached out to Jenea to show her love.
Speaking with ESSENCE, The Four contestant said she learned a lot from the show with judges telling her that being herself and being true to her style would be the “two things will give me longevity in my career.”
She also received a few lessons from her dad, hip-hop artist Larry “Kapital” Gaines.
“I mostly learned how to write from my dad,” she said. “He really taught me how to conduct myself on a song, and how to structure a song how I want. That all comes from him.”
Now that competing on The Four is on her resume, Jenea is looking toward the future. Having released “Perfectly Imperfect,” a single written to raise awareness for autism and underprivileged families affected by the disorder, the singer has plans to continue giving back “through my music by always giving a positive message and always being relatable,” she said.
Janea is already well on her way as a portion of the proceeds from the single went to autism awareness non-profit, Nassan’s Place.
Check out a special ESSENCE interview with Leah Jenea in the video above.