Sae Bebe aka D’Lisia Lloyd p/k/a DLisia is what the R&B game is missing,. The classically trained American singer and songwriter hails from Baton Rouge, Louisiana and has a unique style that came from years of skill-honing.
The pandemic was a tragic moment all over the globe, but it also yielded scores of seminal creative moments. DLisia was one of those moments as she explored her rearing deeper and started to put her singing on Instagram. The response prompted her to double down on her God-given talents and found a fanbase.
Her efforts lead her to Cortez Bryant, who has helped guide the careers of Drake, Nicki Minaj and, of course, Lil Wayne. Bryant now manages a consortium of artists like Lil Nas X, T.I., Trippie Redd through his Blueprint Group. Through Blueprint, DLisia melds into Sae Bebe. Click here for her debut EP, 4Play. Chuck “Jigsaw” Creekmur caught up with the future R&B star in Rotterdam, The Netherlands after an amazing performance at the New Skool Rules music conference.
AllHipHop: All right. We’re at New Skool Rules in Rotterdam, the Netherlands. Tell everybody your name, who you are.
Sae Bebe: Hi, I’m DLisia, AKA Sae Bebe. I’m from Baton Rouge, Louisiana and I am an R&B singer.
AllHipHop: Yeah, that’s up. So first of all, we’re here at New Skool Rules, which is a festival in Rotterdam, and that’s the Netherlands for people that don’t go anywhere. How’s it been here for you, your experience? Is this your first time?
Sae Bebe: Yes, this is definitely my first time. It’s been a great experience to just network and connect with people and allow people to see my talent. I feel like any artist that feel like they have it and they feel like they just haven’t been put in those rooms just yet, this is the place to be. Definitely the place to be. But the energy here is amazing. The panels was definitely needed and it was just a great overall experience.
AllHipHop: Dope. Now I got to admit, there’s a lot of talent here. And I pulled you into this interview on the sly because when you say you want to interview somebody, you get some looks, they’re like, “You don’t want to interview me?” But you were definitely a standout amongst a lot of very talented people.
AllHipHop: Explain your style to folks who may not be familiar with you and what you’re trying to bring to the table.
Sae Bebe: Oh, my style. I feel like I’m a very outgoing person. I don’t think too hard on things. I feel like when you think too hard, that’s when you mess up when they say, “Don’t work harder, work smarter,” I really go by that.
And I sit and observe a lot. So I spent months watching artists, how they move, how they dress, what they do. And in the same time I found how I wanted to dress and I found my sound and I found my style, which is just me at the end of the day. And I feel like I’m definitely weird. I feel like we all weird, but in a good way.
So I bring a lot of, definitely old school. I have a old school soul, definitely. I got that fresh R&B, but it’s a new school mixed with old school together and it clashes in and it makes this beautiful, unique sound. So it’s just like whenever you hear me, you know it’s me. And it’s something you never heard before, so it catches you out guard. So when people look at me, they know there’s something special about me, but they never can expect what they hear. And I love that because when someone shock you, you’ll never forget that.
AllHipHop: Yeah, true, true.
Sae Bebe: So that’s why I feel like that’s my type of style. I bring a very like, “Wow, I didn’t know that she could do that.” So it’s like I keep myself, wait till it’s my turn. I don’t try to overstep my boundaries or anything.
AllHipHop: You have almost like a jazzy sound almost. I think I try not to classify music, but it’s definitely not what’s going on today. What makes you take that approach? A lot of people are conformist and either emulate what they hear or what they think people want to hear.
Sae Bebe: It’s crazy because I heard it on the panel today and for the longest I thought I was crazy thinking this way. But to hear someone else that’s been in the industry for years say the same thing, I don’t like to follow the trend. It’s like you have 20 people doing the same thing, have the same talent, following the same trend. Why would I be 21?
So it’s just like, how about I do this because they’re going to look at me. That’s again, you’re standing out, you keep hearing the same thing and you keep seeing the same style. You are going to get burnt out. But if you see somebody doing something different or is trying to do something different, you like, “Okay.” That’s what really grabs someone attention. So it’s just like, I like to stand out and I like to do my own thing. And I feel like a lot of people don’t understand it. It’s cool to follow the trend, but when you make your own trend and people follow your trend, every time they follow your trend, it’s still bringing attention to you because you the one who created the trend.
Sae Bebe: Ooh, my influences. Let’s take it back once second and let’s go old school. Anita Baker for sure. You know why Anita Baker? Everybody knows when Anita Baker is on that track. Her voice is just different. There’s no one else in this world that sounds like Anita.
AllHipHop: That’s a fact.
Sae Bebe: Anita for sure. I would say Rihanna because of how bold she was. She was bold and she was sure of herself. So no matter what lane she went, because she had different things. She did her pop, she did a bad girl thing. I remember back then when she was doing unfaithful, everything she was sure of. And that’s what I am, I’m very sure of myself. And I would say another person that I really dive into is Bruno Mars.
AllHipHop: Bruno Mars. What about him?
Sae Bebe: Man, Bruno Mars. A lot of people say that R&b is dead, but you can see how Bruno stayed himself and brought what he was true to to the world. And not everyone loved that. He made sure that R&B still was relevant. He brought that old school feeling, but in a new school way. And that’s exactly what I’m doing. I feel like that I’m doing so. Okay. Those are my top three for sure.
AllHipHop: So Louisiana, what does that bring to the table for you? Anything?
Sae Bebe: I feel like, and this is just me, I feel like Louisiana is the south. I feel like we step the south. You know what I’m saying?
AllHipHop: Oh, Okay.
Sae Bebe: I feel like I probably just stepped on some toes, but everyone loves Louisiana culture. You know what I’m saying?
And every day… That’s another thing, a lot of people, when I tell them I’m from Louisiana and then I start singing, it’s just like, “Whoa.” They don’t expect that. But being different, having our own culture, we don’t follow the trend at all. When you come to Louisiana, once you hit that border, you know exactly where you at. You in our territory, we do things differently. Every region, every place have their own language. Have their own thing, but, nah. It’s something about Louisiana that’s different and everyone wants to come Louisiana. Everyone wants to come to Louisiana and everyone wants to see SehBaby sing. So I feel like, who else to represent Louisiana but me?
AllHipHop: Yeah, definitely. I know a few artists out of there. They’re all different too. They’re all very…. Come from all walks of life. You’re a college person. College student. That’s something we don’t hear people talk about too much.
Sae Bebe: So I went to Southern Miss first and then I transferred and went to Southern. And when I first went to Southern Miss I was a vocal performing arts major. So I was studying classical music, opera. I used to sing opera from the age of 14 to 19.
AllHipHop: Oh wow. Okay.
Sae Bebe: So I did that and then I decided opera and classical music is not what I wanted to do. I’m glad I did it because it gave me a lot of vocal training knowledge, but I was like, it’s not what I wanted to do. So I changed my major and I ended up transferring schools and going into healthcare administration field. And then I start working at a hospital being a patient accountant.
AllHipHop: Okay. But, it’s funny because I went to school as well and I’m a journalist by trade, but there’s a difference that you can notice between someone that goes through training rather than someone that just starts doing it. You know what I’m saying? Do you feel like that’s bleeding into the music? The formal training? Rather than in like most R&B singers, if you call yourself R&B, come through the church, for example
Sae Bebe: Yeah. I started in a church, yeah. I feel like training definitely helps. It definitely helps because it allows me, it actually allowed me to find my sound faster, because I knew how to control and I knew what I could do. I feel like I can make myself sound like whatever I want to sound like because of the training that I have. And it’s just like, in order to do this, we’re going to have to have some type of vocal training.
If you don’t have vocal training now as an artist and you end up becoming big and you blow up, you get with a label, whatever, they’re going to give you a vocal coach, you’re going to have vocal training, because you have to learn how to sing maybe 15 to almost an hour set back to back of your best songs. And your best songs might have a huge range. You know what I’m saying?
And it’s just like the songs that I performed this weekend had a really big range. So I had to make sure that I was vocally prepared for that. And with vocal training, it goes beyond just breathing and stuff. It goes to what you eat. Can’t eat cheese, can’t eat dairy, can’t you eat things like that. And you think, “Oh, that ain’t going to mess up my voice.” And you might sound good, but when you actually take the time to actually train your vocal chords, you sound even better than what you thought you sound like. So I feel like vocal training, leading into that, that’s definitely a big impact into my artistry. Yeah.
AllHipHop: What about here at New Skool Rules? Have you found any potential producers or collaborators or anything like that?
Sae Bebe: Oh, definitely. I’m always looking to collab. I’m the type of person that it’s okay to be in the studio by myself, but I’d rather be in the studio with other songwriters and other producers. Because if you look at a lot of these great hits and you look at the credits behind it, all the people that was in that room to make that beautiful hit, it takes a lot of great minds. And I feel like a lot of people when they think that, “Oh, because I’m talented, I don’t need anyone else.” That’s the biggest mistake you can make. So, yeah, I’ve connected with a lot… The producers out here are crazy. I connected with a lot of producers and songwriters, so I can’t wait to work with them.
AllHipHop: Now what about… You said the other day that maybe people might be nudging you to rap or you might start doing that. You still thinking about that?
Sae Bebe: I’m still thinking about that melodically singing, rap. I definitely, especially where I’m from, you know what I’m saying? I have to incorporate my culture into the music, of course. So I’m definitely thinking about that. And I feel like y’all going to hear some records soon with more of that in there. Because I feel like right now we live in a world where you have to combine two genres of music. Like R&B is cool. I love R&B, but R&B and hip-hop. Woo.
AllHipHop: Done right though. Because sometimes it could be wrong.
Sae Bebe: It could be wrong.
AllHipHop: What’s the last song you performed? The one that does have almost like a rap style too it?
Sae Bebe: Oh, “Sh#t to Prove.” It’s not out yet, but, I can’t wait for the world to hear that.
AllHipHop: Yeah, that’s a good record.
Sae Bebe: Yeah, that’s the record I feel like people will be like, “Hmm.” You know what I mean?
AllHipHop: Yeah, definitely.
Sae Bebe: But “Sh#t to Prove” is basically that. It’s just like I’m coming in and I’m talking. But I’m also showing you that I can sing. So I feel like that that is the perfect record to show exactly what SehBaby could do.
AllHipHop: Okay. And future plans. What is in your immediate future in maybe a little bit down the line?
Sae Bebe: So in the future, dropping more songs for sure. Be more consistent in dropping more songs, having content plans. I’m definitely thinking about dropping some merch. Like hats, hoodies, sweats. You know, look at me.
AllHipHop: Yeah. I’m like, do you have a line or what are we doing? Do you have a-
Sae Bebe: Not yet. I’m working on that. But definitely dabbling in a lot of things. I do also act. So, you going to see some things coming up. I have a special surprise for everyone on October 29th. So y’all just look out for that. Y’all see it on social media.
AllHipHop: But you can’t break the news?
Sae Bebe: Not just yet. But see, the news is going to break itself. Yeah, but can’t wait for that. I’m just super excited and I just want to bring everyone with me on my journey.