Manika, an American singer, rapper, songwriter, producer, reality TV show host and published author, has been heating up the Billboard US charts with the release of her new music video for her hit single “How Can I Love.”Â Since the video’s release last month, it has generated more than half a million views on YouTube and 5.6 million streams on Pandora. In the music video, the TV show host of TLC’s Global Beauty MastersÂ used videos from fans to help capture the feelings of “self consciousness, unhappiness and/or depression,” making it “different from any other music video concept seen.”
Celeb Secrets spoke with the singerÂ about the conceptÂ behind the music video forÂ “How Can I Love” and the response she’s received from fans after releasing bothÂ the single and music video. She also talked to us about working with Tyga onÂ her previously releasedÂ singleÂ “I Might Go…”, the work she does with the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and inner-city schoolchildren and her funny stories from touring with One Direction – make sure to check out our exclusive Q&A with Manika below.
Celeb Secrets: Your new hit single “How Can I Love” is on regular rotation with SiriusXM and Top 40 Radio. What is it like to turn on the radio and hear your song?
Manika:Â “This is my seventh song on Top 40 radio and every single timeÂ itÂ stillÂ makes me freak out! I just feel so blessed and thankful to be able to do what I love. Thanks to the support of my amazing fans and amazing people, I am able to share my passion and creativity with the world.”
Celeb Secrets: How do you think “How Can I Love” can relate to everyone listening to it?
Manika:Â “So many people, including my fans, closest friends and at times myself, have gone through periods of self consciousness, unhappiness and/or depression. “How Can I Love” really captures those feelings. I hope it can help people who are going through hard times and difficult emotions cope better. Depression, pain, darkness does not discriminate. People of all ages, genders, sexualities, races, countries, financial incomes and other walks of life can experience it. In the music video, I incorporate videos from my fans in a way that is very different from any other music video concept seen. Thank you so much to my brave fans in the “How Can I Love” music video for motivating people to feel better about themselves by letting them know they are not alone in their struggles. Every individual is beautiful and deserves love. Not only from others, but from yourself.”
Celeb Secrets: Tyga is featured on a few of your songs, specifically “I Might Go…”. What was the best moment you two shared while creating the song?
Manika: “Tyga is the best! He’s so talented and I was so excited when I found out he wanted toÂ colaÂ with me! I also loved shooting the music video with him for “I Might Go…”! Â Shooting music videos can be very tricky. I remember during the pool scene together, we had to stand on a very tiny slippery ledge and do our performance thereâ€¦or basically a game of try not to fall in the pool! (laughs)Â They shot Tygaâ€™s solo scenes there first, so by the time I got there Tyga was showing me all the best techniques on how not fall into the pool mid scene (laughs).”
Celeb Secrets: You are the host of “Global Beauty Masters” (students) on TLC, can you tell us what that entails?
Manika:Â “Global Beauty Masters” (students) is an international hair, nail, wardrobe and makeup competition in which students from beauty schools across the world compete for one winner to be crowned. What you see on the show is incredible, surreal works of arts that you would never be able to see anywhere else. Being the host, I have the honor of seeing all these creations up close. l have seen hair that shoots up ten feet from the ground and moves in timing to music and that’s not even the craziest. You definitely have to tune in for yourself.”
Celeb Secrets: What was one of the funniest moments from touring with One Direction?
Manika: “One Direction are all super cool guys! I have endless funny momentsÂ backstage and more stories with them.Â I actually have a tour diary full of these stories that I will be posting to my website soon. Keep checking my website and follow my social media to find out when.”
Celeb Secrets: You give a lot back to the community and do workshops with inner city school kids, what do your workshops include and how do you think it affects the students?
Manika:Â “I come from a family of authors.Â I wrote and published my first book at ageÂ 15Â and donated $15K of book sales to the ASPCA Animal Shelter. When I toured all these schools, I would read from my book, give writing workshops, give career/goal-setting workshops, and educating the kids with the ASPCA on how to properly take care of pets. I had an amazing time touring schools. The kids are the sweetest, really appreciative and so anxious to learn. I love bringing valueÂ to people and I’m so glad the kids loved it as much as I loved being there.”
Celeb Secrets: Are you working on any new music? If so, what can you tease about the material?
Manika: “Yes I am.Â I’m in the studio writing, recording and producing new songs.Â On my radio show “Manika’s Love Line” on Dash Radio Discover, IÂ frequently play and tease full unreleased songs from me.Â Tune in Sundays atÂ 6pm PSTÂ and you’ll most likely hear one of my latest.”
Celeb Secrets: Since our website is called Celeb Secrets, whatâ€™s a secret about yourself that fans wouldnâ€™t know?Â
Manika: “All my fans know I am a huge animal lover! Many of them know that I have recently become a vegetarian because of my love for animals, but none of my fans now that I was actually a vegetarian when I was 5 years old too.Â That was when I first found out that meat came from animals.Â I was devastated and couldn’t stop crying!”