Ebony L. Ross, singer, song-writer, actress and speaker is a D.I.V.A (Determined, Intelligent, Victorious & Able) in her own right, captivating audiences with her hardcore and gut wrenching vocal delivery. From the time she grabbed the microphone at 8-yrs old in her current church home of Trinity Pentecostal House of Prayer Church (TPHP), she felt comfortable captivating an audience.
Ms. Ross, made her debut appearance as “Eva” in the independent film: “Bullets Over Brownsville,” that has been screened in Berlin Germany, Africa, New York and Los Angeles (just to name a few). Also, she landed a lead role in the stage play: “I’m Every Woman.” She has been blessed to share her music ministry at the BET Sunday Best Competition, 98.7 Kiss FM Showcase, The NY Musical Theater, The Riverside Church of New York and as a NYC NAACP ACT-SO gold medal winner.
Born and raised in Brownsville Brooklyn, Ms. Ross learned early thru her community and Christ that being a soldier is necessary and faith truly moves mountains. That is why in 2010 when God said it was time to take it the next level, she joined forces with the soulful musicians of TPHP to embark upon a true God fearing music ministry that seeks to take the word of God thru sound to the masses.
With a Bachelors and Masters degree under her belt, there is no stopping Ebony L. Ross. In addition to her creative ministry, Ms. Ross is also a “youth empowerment” leader, “spiritual” advocate and “foot soldier” in the spread of awareness on HIV/AIDS. She is determined to do what her father could not, due to his death in his battle with AIDS. Sing to save souls, inspire sadden hearts, and encourage those on a positive track to continue pushing forward. Sky is the limit and she gives God all the glory!!!
Q&A With Ebony L. Ross
BS: When did you realize your talent for singing?
Ebony L. Ross: I began singing in the children’s choir at my home church, Trinity Pentecostal House of Prayer Church in East New York, Brooklyn when I was 8-years old. The name of our group was the Tiny Tots and I was one of many children that was forced to sing or else? LOL! But, I never got a chance to sing a solo during that time because we did everything as a group. However, I realized my true talent for singing when I was 11-
years old on a family trip to South Carolina.
My entire family, including extended relatives all stayed at my grandparent’s house while on this particular southern journey…..ohhh that sure was a tight spaced week. My grandparents were saved, sanctified, holy-ghost filled and fire baptized folks, so activities for us children were truly scarce. I remember literally being bored out my mind one evening, so I decided to gather all my young female cousins and said; “Let’s
pretend like we are on Showtime at the Apollo and perform Hold on To Your Love by En Vouge for the entire family as a surprise.” Although, they agreed initially they were bit reluctant because it was not a Gospel song…..totally to the left of “This Little Light of Mine”, but I was determined to show my family that I could really sing and have some fun doing it too. We made show tickets out of loose leaf paper, created outfits, practiced dance steps and tried to harmonize the best we could, but I didn’t reveal my solo part during rehearsal because I wanted to surprise everyone. Finally, the moment had arrived and I called everyone into the room and gave them each a ticket as they walked in. As they walked in, I made them rub the wall to make them fill like they were at the real Apollo. LOL! I suppose, my imagination was running wild even back then. They all sat and were puzzled as to what was going on. Then out of no-where, I said: “put your hands together for En Vougue.” They all clapped and were laughing at the same time. However, when I opened my mouth to sing the 1st line of the solo portion of the song; my family faces dropped and were in total shock. I remember them saying: “Oh my God, Ebony can really sing” and my grandfather saying: “I had no idea, I just wish it was a Gospel song.” LOL! It was in this moment, that I realized I was on to something because I felt so comfortable hitting those high
BS: How did you enhance your talent?
Ebony L. Ross: As time went on, I enhanced my talent by joining the choir in my elementary school, joining the choir in my high school, participating in singing competitions where I worked with a vocal coach, and attempted to determine if singing was indeed part of my purpose because in my household, Education was first and the Arts were 2nd.
BS: Which artists inspire you? Why?
Ebony L. Ross: There are several artists that inspire me, but I believe Diana Ross, Kim Burrell, Mary Mary and Mary J. Blidge are my top four. Diana Ross, simply because thru-out the history of her career she has exuded grace and was one of the originators of the term D.I.V.A, which I personally define as: “Determined, Intelligent, Victorius and Able.”
Kim Burrell, gives me chills everytime she sings. From her signature runs to her heartfelt delivery. Also, her testimony speaks volumes to me because she experienced tribulations as a child and so did I. However, she allowed her hardship as a youth to later be her strength to share with the world thru song. Mary Mary, due to their fearlessness in taking Gospel music to another level by combining sounds from other genres in an effort to bring those that would not normally be intrigued by Gospel music closer to God via production and lyrical message. Also, Mary J. Blidge because of her gut wrenching vocal delivery and reminder that God places diamonds even in the hood. All we have to do is allow HIM to dust us off and help us love ourselves enough to comprehend that we are capable of truly shining inside out.
BS: What wonderful experiences have you had the opportunity of showcasing your beautiful voice?
Ebony L. Ross: I have had the pleasure of showcasing my voice in numerous arenas. But a few that jump out as being truly memorable have been, NAACP NYC ACT-SO “Olympics of the Mind” Competition, where I was awarded the Contemporary Gold Medal Award, Stepping Up In Faith for HIV and AIDS-Christmas In July Gospel Concert, Brooklyn Borough President’s office-Marty Markowitz and BET Sunday Best. However, the best experience thus far has been receiving the opportunity to sing at my home church; Trinity Pentecostal House Prayer Church on Sunday’s because it is my foundation. My deceased grandfather is the founder of my church and everytime I sing, I know he is saluting me from Heaven saying: “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.” (Matthew 5:16)
BS: What keeps you going? What is the ultimate level of achievement you want to attain?
Ebony L. Ross: My faith definitely keeps me going and knowing that Jesus will never give me more than HE believes that I can handle. Also, my father who died of AIDS in 1997 is my strength because he always told me I was a soldier and I know that he would want me to never give up. Also, I believe my role is to assist in saving souls, healing hearts and encouraging those on a positive track to keep pushing. It’s a big job, but I know Ms.
Ross is equipped. LOL!
The ultimate level of achievement that I want to obtain is before I leave this physical earth, for my legacy to be respected as a true woman of God, for folks to listen to my music ministry and decide to give God a chance, to inspire youth/young adults from impoverished areas around the world that there is hope and to be provided with
a platform to illustrate that beauty, intelligence, gift, positivity and calling truly does exist and her name is Ebony L. Ross.
BS: What difficulties have you experienced as a singer? What can an aspiring artist do to avoid the common obstacles?
Ebony L. Ross: The difficulties that I have faced as a Singer have been personal challenges within myself. Sometimes, one’s self can be his/her biggest hurdle to conquer more than anyone else. Am I going to be obedient and answer the call of music ministry or let fear get the best of me? However, in 2006 God spoke to me and said, “It is time to get saved and lean on me 100%. Fear not because I will protect you and prepare you for great works to assist in building my kingdom.” At first I thought I was literally losing my mind, but the voice was so clear that I knew it was God. As a result, I decided to get saved, left my full-time job, became a Consultant, received my first independent lead acting role, began my song-writing journey, decided that Contemporary Gospel/Inspirational music was part of my calling, allowed God to gut me out of certain behaviors and promised myself that fear was a ghost of the past. This all done in the same year that God spoke to me…..hmmmm….HE is truly AMAZING.
To avoid the common obstacle of what I define as self-tribulation is to build a personal relationship with his/her Higher Power, surround themselves with individuals that celebrate them and not tolerate them, attempt to nurture their vision, seek to live a purpose driven life and know that obedience, hard-work and a positive
stance is fuel on the journey.
BS: What are the motto’s in which you live by?
Ebony L. Ross:
“ Many are called, but few are chosen.” (Matthew 22:14)
“Faith Without Work is Dead” (James 2:26)
“Loser’s Do What they Want to Do & Winners Do What they Have to Do.” (Eric
Steven Ross Sr.- My Deceased Father)
“People, Places & Things” (Eric Steven Ross Sr.-My Deceased Father)
“Live, Laugh, Love.” (John Mcleod)
“Anything, But Fail.” (Ebony L. Ross)