Meet this Pasadena-born songstress that spent years as a model, sang behind will.i.am at Barack Obama's inauguration and seeks to get her career going with her R&B duo The Jazzmins.
It's no secret that Los Angeles has plenty of beautiful women and many of them are either aspiring or established actresses or models. After all, it's Hollywood. Whereas they would usually be found in upscale Hollywood clubs, that's not the case any more. With the L.A. Hip Hop scene as effervescent as ever these days, many dimes have gravitated towards parties where the likes of Pac Div, U-N-I and Dom Kennedy perform or hang out. It's at one of these parties late last year that this writer was introduced to Jazzmine Jackson, one half of a new music group called The Jazzmins, and automatically assumed she was a model.
In fact, Jazzmine, who modeled as a child, is a singer who is just now getting back into modeling. As her pictures will attest, she's definitely a beauty. Add in the fact that the early twenty-something, who was raised in San Gabriel Valley and currently calls the city of San Dimas – of Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure fame – home, ran track in college and sings, she definitely qualifies as a beauty with brains.
Beauty & Brains: What have you been up to lately as far as modeling?
Jazzine Jackson: It hasn't been too much. I did a lot of modeling as a kid. I just recently got back into it and did a shoot with Brass [Photography] and I just did her new t-shirt line, for their look book [Pistol Etiquette]. And that's pretty much it for now this year.
Beauty & Brains: What are your pursuits outside of modeling?
Jazzmine Jackson: I sing. I've been a part of all of the choirs since I was a kid. I'm a member of AGAPE international spiritual center. I've sung there for years. They have an international choir and a joy ensemble. We did a lot of stuff for the inauguration, we sang behind we sang behind will.i.am on Oprah and Larry King [Live], the Neighborhood Ball & a bunch of different balls around there in [Washington] D.C. last year. But as far as me, I'm just working with a bunch of different producers for my EP, Jazmin and I are a group, she produces and I sing, we're called 'The Jazzmins'. We're working on that to come out sometime later this year.
Beauty & Brains: What's your background in terms of where you are from, raised, went to college?
Jazzmine Jackson: I was born in Pasadena, California, and I've been raised further east every couple of years, as we've moved. I went to Glendora High School and Cal State Northridge for music and ran track there. I did MI [Musicians Institute] and that's pretty much it school wise. I'm Black, my grandfather was Native American. I started singing when I was about nine, I had a little music group with my cousin.
Beauty & Brains: What do you do for a living?
Jazzmine Jackson: I've been singing in a cover band around here that does R&B. I used to be a bartender, I got out of that in February.
Beauty & Brains: What do you think makes you different from other models or singers?
Jazzmine Jackson: Body-wise not too much. I just run. I did hurdles most of my life, so I'm still in shape. I sing as much as I can. I decided to do modeling so I can get my face out there so that when my music comes out I can be more known.
Beauty & Brains: Is there anyone you want to model your career after?
Jazzmine Jackson: I don't necessarily have one. I admire the way Tyra Banks can focus on so many endeavors at one time, and I think musically I look up to Lauryn Hill and a lot of underground people, Emily King, Mateo. I love R&B.
Beauty & Brains: Finish this sentence..: In five years, I'm going to be …
Jazzmine Jackson: ... I plan to be a lot more well-known. I plan to be modeling and singing professionally. And I also have a lot experiences with my church and I plan on having a workshop for teens and young adults.
Beauty & Brains: The Jazzmins, how would you describe your sound?
Jazzmine Jackson: Our mixtape is going to be like '90s-inspired. We've done a lot of old songs we are changing the song and making more relevant to today.