The DMV Daily Interviews: Yan

Yan Shares Knowledge With LivengoodLivin


Where did the moniker Yan come from?

It’s just a nickname. My name is Tatiana, since Senior year in high school my friends have called my Yannie. Over the years I shortened it to Yan. Yannie was really childish.

Describe yourself with a lyric:

(Insert Curtis Mayfield – “The Makings of You” Lyrics here)

When did you start media?
My true start in media I would date all the way back to 2010 during the Myspace era, when I really think about it. At the time I was pursuing music as a rapper/vocalist, I had built a music page and did a number of collaborations with California artists and producers that I had built internet “friendships” with via my personal Myspace profile. To paint a picture, this was back during the blog era when Jerkin’ music was popular in Cali, and the New Boyz made it popular on the East Coast. When I stopped pursing being an artist, I started my own art submission blog via Tumblr, The Art Xhibition and did a lot of interviews and features on local artists: rappers, clothing designers, photographers, etc. That’s where I made my transition from the performance side of music to the background – digital strategy, journalism, interviewing, content production, A&R coordination.

What made you fall in love?

Performing arts made me fall in love. I danced ballet, tap and jazz as a child, I sang in the church choir and Mercer County Community College’s Jazz Band, I played percussion in the marching band in high school, I’ve played piano for over 15 years, and I minored in voice throughout college. Music is literally my life.

Tell us everything you do media related:

I am on the Board of Directors for and the Editor-in-chief of Dinner Land Network, which involves a lot of content curation, event production, digital strategy, audio/visual premieres, and social media management. In my personal time, I was a media personality for 2 years, currently I am a freelance graphic designer, occasionally release opinion editorials, and finally after years upon years of performing arts and studying music theory, I recently got into A&R coordination — Chase N. Cashe blessed me with my first A&R Coordinator credit on his upcoming album, 3 Point Star which does not have a release date at the moment.


What artists you have worked with? 

As far as directly working with as far as in-studio or building content, I’ve worked with Chase N. Cashe, Will North, Saturn Alexander, Corey Lee and Connie Diiamond to name a few, but many of the artists I’ve “worked with” over the years was more so plugging opportunities, providing studio time, featuring them within content on Dinner Land or House of Blaze, and providing direction with social media strategy. In THAT light, I’ve “worked with”  Kris Kasanova, Joe College, Tray Pizzy, Brick City Cartel Twondon, and others.

What artists dead or alive you would love to work with? 

I want to work with SiR, Daniel Caesar, H.E.R., Ye Ali, Snoh Aalegra, Bryson Tiller, Iman Omari… man there’s so many. I would name dead ones, but honestly, that could never become a reality so I’d rather speak working with a lot of these artists that are carrying R&B on their backs at the moment, into existence. These artists have the talent and skill to make timeless music and I would love to be a part of that process.

Which artist reminds you of you the most and why?

H.E.R. reminds me of me the most. Although I relate to a lot of her music if not all, her efforts to remain low key is SOOOOO me. I’m not too much of a fan of attention, I don’t really hit the scene too much, I don’t make it an issue to be in pictures with everyone, I only go where necessary, I only respond to certain shit, if it doesn’t elevate me, I’m good. But this is all just based off social media presence, I can’t really say who actually reminds me of me the most because I don’t know any of the artists I’d like to work with on a personal level, yet.

Where do you see yourself in five years?
In five years I see myself as an exec in the music industry either at a label or streaming platform. I see myself still providing resources and being a resource for up-and-coming and mainstream artists. In five years I see me still working alongside my team, Dinner Land, who will at that point in time be one of the biggest influences in the content game.

Thoughts on the industry?
Honestly, I’m still trying to get a seat at the table, I wouldn’t say I’m “in” yet. What I will say though, this industry is male dominated, obviously. These men will do everything to slight you, to not acknowledge you, to give you less money than your male counterparts, to sleep with you, to keep you below them. Of course, not all of them, but eventually as a woman in this industry you stumble upon this behavior so frequently that you begin to move like they all act these ways, until they show you that’s not their character. Know your value, demand what you’re worth, and recognize that sometimes there’s a lot of present and future value in doing free work. Assert yourself, create opportunities for yourself and don’t always depend on someone to give you one.

There’s a lot of people in this industry that truly love music, but there’s also a lot of people in this industry that don’t care for it, don’t care for the culture, just here for a bag and a look Hence, don’t jump on every single thing presented to you. Lastly, a lot of these “clout kids” aren’t doing shit to grow the culture, it just seems like it because of their social media followings, don’t get sucked up into that bullshit.

Anyways to improve it?
Invest in black women. Hire black women. Support black women. Stop slighting black women. Stop bullying black women in business. The industry needs more black women winning.

Any tips to media rookies?

Figure out what you love, figure out your target audience based off of what you love, then build your audience and influence being genuine. There’s longevity in authenticity. It’s hard to build a loyal audience when you keep switching up your online/offline presence and content built around it based on what’s trending. People stop connecting with you when you’re not consistent. Best way to stay consistent, brand yourself being yourself. Focus on high engagement, before you worry about high follower count.


Any shout outs?

Shoutout to my other half and #1 supporter Jamar, shoutout to gang, Shake, Blue, Sunny, Brea Simone, Crystal, Joe Vango, the CIVXSAV boys, DJ Miss Milan, shoutout to anyone that ever blessed me with an opportunity, and shoutout to anyone that genuinely supports me.

Final thoughts?
#FreeTax & Rest in paradise Reggie Ossé.

All social medias

Twitter – @YanBlaze

IG – @YanSnead


About John Livengood

24 UMES B.A. Fall 2016 Bowie State M.A. In Progress TheDMVDaily CEO Media Correspondent, Actor, Model, The most interesting man in the world. Inquires

View all posts by John Livengood

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