Jerome Shares What It Was Like Recording "I Will" With Tamera
Jerome Wiggins tells StyleNetwork.com all about his experience recording the song, "I Will," with cousin Tamera Mowry-Housley for his album Manifest...
How would you describe Tamera's singing voice?
Tamera has a beautiful voice. She has a pure voice. I would call it "pop." I've always told her that she should sing on a Disney cartoon. She has that voice.
What is the song "I Will" about? Why did you pick that song for Tamera to sing on?
"I Will" is simply a song of surrender to Jesus. I picked "I Will" for Tamera because it's so much like her: pure, true and beautiful. It's a song of worship, and she, much like myself, loves to offer up worship to God.
What is your absolute favorite lyric from "I Will?"
"If it's worship, if it's praise, I will bless your name." That means, WHATEVER you require God, I say yes.
Why do you think you were getting so frustrated in the initial stages of recording the song?
I was like a fish out of water. My producer was in Pittsburgh. I wasn't home working on music. Tamera and Eric Dawkins had a strong relationship and I only knew of him at the time. I worked so hard to make sure Tamera knew her stuff that I didn't give myself the same attention. Ultimately, I was the producer of the song because I was telling Tamera how to sing. I was wearing the hat of a producer, which is not a hat I'm used to wearing while I'm working. Also, I was a little bit frustrated because she was nailing it and I wasn't.
On the second day in the studio, your vocals were up to par, but you were crying. What exactly were you feeling in that moment?
I cried because of the words. More than anything, I want to do music that directs people back to Jesus. If it's not directing people back to God, I don't know what my purpose is. There are people who sing in different genres and God bless them. But I know my assignment. Anybody who loves God knows that you can't sing to him for too long without feeling overcome with emotion. I was singing to Him. In that moment, I just lost it. I forgot about cameras. I forgot about everyone else watching me. It didn't matter. It was just my offering to God. That's where the tears came from. There was no sadness involved.
You and Tamera are passionate about singing. Any special music-related memories growing up?
Oh my goodness, I have so many memories. One of the funniest memories was when Tia and Tamera were doing a musical called Twist here in P.A., and I learned the harmonies just like how it was done on the show. We did that show day in and day out when they weren't on stage. Also, another memory of Tamera and I, as well as Tia, was when we were all visiting family in Miami, and we were singing Jodeci's "Freek'n You" in the backseat of the car. We got in such big trouble for that from our parents. That was a crazy memory. Another one is teaching Tia and Tamera how to do riffs and runs with their voices—they sucked at it! We spent a Christmas in Miami and we sang. We love to sang.
How was it working with Eric Dawkins?
Eric Dawkins is the man. He's such a great guy. We're now friends. We text and tweet each other. We've exchanged numbers. I would love to work with Eric Dawkins again in the future. He taught me so much. He pushed me to another level of confidence. The best compliment he gave me was when he told me, "You have a nice pen." He told me that after he found out that I wrote "I Will." I was like Wow! He taught me how to do a couple riffs and runs that I would not have stretched myself to do. He told me to own myself.
How did you get into songwriting?
I developed my skill for songwriting purely out of the desire to sing my love for God. It's like any other relationship: if you appreciate somebody, you tell them. My songwriting was born out of my wanting to articulate back to God how I really feel about him.
Who else do you want to collaborate with?
Hands down: Pastor Donnie McClurkin. I want to sing with him so much that I have e-mailed Oprah about it. He doesn't even know me—yet! He's definitely a gospel music mentor for me from afar.
What kind of feedback have you gotten for "I Will?"
There are a few people who've heard the song. My brother's heard it; my grandmother's heard it. They loved it! I'm so happy to share Jesus with the world and to be doing it with Tamera. I want people to know Jerome outside of Tia and Tamera's cousin or the third twin or the voice of reason. I want people to know who I am. I am a lover of Jesus Christ. After tonight, I don't think anyone will ever wonder who Jerome is.
You can purchase "I Will" now on iTunes.
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Meet Tia & Tamera's Cousin Jerome aka the "Third Twin"
Catch all new episodes of Tia & Tamera Tuesday nights at 9/8c—only on Style!
"I Will" Cover Photo Credit: Gerri Peter Viloria