Bobby V, formerly known as Bobby Valentino, has enjoyed a 25-year long career that dates back to the 1990s.
After starting out in the boyband Mista, he pursued a solo career in the mid-2000s that helped propel him to the forefront.
His debut single, Slow Down, still remains one of his most iconic songs and reached audiences all over, peaking at No. 4 in the UK and No. 8 in the US.
Fast forward to 2021 and Bobby is still very active on the music scene. With new material being fed to listeners, he is also booked and busy with live shows.
On August 8, he will return to London, UK, to perform at Metro Fest at Trent County Park, where other high-profile names such as Fat Joe, Jon B, Mya, and Blackstreet, to name a few, will join him.
Ahead of his set at the festival, Monsters and Critics caught up with the R&B star to discuss what he has in store for those with tickets, the new music he has been working on, and the new artists he’s been working closely with.
Monsters & Critics: This weekend you’re performing at Metro Fest to a huge crowd. Setlist-wise, is it going to be a celebration of your hits or will there also be some added surprises?
Bobby V: Yeah, it’ll probably be a celebration of the hits. It just depends on how long I can get through those, if I can throw in a couple of newbies in there or something, I will.
M&C: How do you usually put together a setlist for shows like this? Do you base it on the reception the songs have had at previous shows or do you have a look at what’s popular on streaming services?
Bobby V: I really look at where I’m at and how the songs perform in those different areas. So, it definitely goes by how the songs performed in the country that I’m in.
M&C: You’ve visited London many times. Is there a particular memory that stands out to you?
Bobby V: I think every time I come it’s an awesome experience so I have memories from every time. I think the very first time I came was probably the most memorable because I knew nothing about going overseas. And so they were like, “you’re getting your passport, you’re going to the UK!” I was like, where is the UK?!
You know, I’m just a country boy from Atlanta so I knew nothing about traveling outside of the United States. The UK was the first place internationally that I traveled to. After that, I started going all around the world and it was just amazing.
M&C: You released a single titled “Reply” earlier this year. Was that song quite freshly made or had you been sitting on it for a while?
Bobby V: Oh yeah, it was freshly made. I actually produced the track and wrote it. I have a lot of songs that I’m always recording on. I have a lot of music coming up that I’m just sitting on. But, I should be releasing a lot of music before the end of this year. I’m excited about that and looking forward to blessing the world with some new music.
M&C: You have a new single, Like This, which is a collaboration with King Kanja and Santos Silva. What can you tell me about that track?
Bobby V: It’s a collaboration with my two artists. It’s an afrobeats record, I wanted to tap into that afrobeats market. I have been listening to a lot of different types of music and King Kanja brought me this track and I was like yo, we need to do something to it. Once I heard the track, we went into the studio and we actually shot the video for it. I’m excited for the world to hear it because it’s a new sound for me, it’s something that I haven’t done before. It’s an R&B meets afrobeats type of song.
M&C: Does that mean fans can expect a new project on the way or are you just focusing on singles at the moment?
Bobby V: Yeah, I’m going to release a whole new project, a couple of projects alongside two artists that I have signed. I have a rap artist named Zanman and I have a pop/R&B named Santos Silva. I plan to release music with those guys, which is coming soon. I have albums and they have albums and I look to release them before the end of this year.
M&C: Out of the many collaborations that you’ve done, is there one that stands out to you for a particular reason or one you’re most proud of?
Bobby V: You know, I’ve worked with a lot of awesome artists. I think the best, biggest collaborations is going to be with my new artists because I want them to see their dreams come to fruition. I’m excited about collaborating with them to help them get to the next level to live their dream.
M&C: Is there anyone you’ve had your eye on that you want to work with next?
Bobby V: There are so many. I even wanna collab with some UK artists. It’s not anyone in particular but I wanna collab with old artists, new artists. I’m into right now where I am in my career, I wanna help people to live the life that I have lived and so they can see what it’s like and for them to enjoy it.
M&C: There are so many greats acts on the lineup. Is there anyone you’re really looking forward to seeing?
Bobby V: Mya is a beautiful soul so I would love to just see her and hear her sing.
M&C: Is there any goal you would like to achieve by the end of the year?
Bobby V: My goal is to put out the music and put out my two artists’ albums by the end of this year. It’s going to be amazing, I can’t wait for the world to hear what they have to offer. I can’t wait until they are traveling internationally and then living the life that they have dreaming and hoping of.
M&C: Are you hoping your album will be out before your UK tour in October?
Bobby V: Definitely, it should be out by September. It should be out before I’m back in October.