Chicago jazz vocalist, recording artist and Elmhurst College alumna Typhanie Monique ’95 returned to her alma mater recently to receive an award for entrepreneurship in the music business, and to speak with students about how to succeed in the highly competitive music industry.
Monique, who is preparing to launch a solo CD next spring, was named the winner of the 2016 Entrepreneurship in Music Business Award, sponsored by the College and the Illinois-based Coleman Foundation.
Professor of Music Tim Hays, Coleman chair at the College and director of the music business program, presented Monique with the award, which recognizes successful music professionals for “accomplishments in music business entrepreneurship” in the development of their careers.
“She’s a full-on artist—conceptually strong, an excellent singer, the full package—and she’s always done it all herself,” Hays said.
A popular vocalist on the Chicago jazz circuit, as well as a recording artist and educator, Monique took the unusual step of raising the money for her upcoming CD, Call It Magic, by launching a Kickstarter campaign. In a month she raised all the money needed to finance her project, with some to spare. The Chicago album release of Call It Magic is scheduled for late February of 2017.
Professor Hays presented Monique with her award during his class, Principles and Procedures in the Music Industry. During the class, Monique told students about some of the things she has done to further her career, including being open to a variety of performance opportunities and writing songs for commercials. She encouraged students to have a strong EPK (Electronic Press Kit) with samples of their music, photos and a compelling bio. Monique urged the students to write their own bios, and to use the opportunity to think about their artistic identity and what makes them stand apart.
“You have to want it. You have to have this passion in your belly and know that ‘No’ is not an answer,” she said. “You have to be really determined if you want to do this as a profession.”