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The Voice of Trey Lorenz








Los Angeles, CA - - TREY LORENZ, perhaps best known for his backup vocals with super star MARIAH CAREY, shows off his own singing and songwriting skills with his latest release MR. MISTA out September 19, 2006 on X-RAY RECORDS.


Having performed on blockbuster albums by such artists as USHER, VANESSA WILLIAMS and WILL SMITH just to name a few, this impeccable vocalist steps out from behind the shadows with this solid, 11-track R&B collection showing the world what an exceptional artist he truly is.


Born in Florence, South Carolina, Trey began singing in church and learned to read music through a brief stint of piano lessons.  While in college, he performed with various bands lending his vocal and keyboard talents. In February, 1990, a friend of his was singing backup in the recording studio with a new artist who was working on her debut record. That artist was Mariah Carey.


"I met Trey in February 1990," says Carey, "when I was working on my first album. I was recording a song called 'There's Got To Be A Way,' and one of the backup singers was friends with Trey and had brought him down to the studio for the session. I heard someone singing all the high, top notes with me and I'm like, 'Who is that?' I turned around and it was Trey. It was the beginning of a beautiful friendship."


And that friendship continues. Trey has been working with Mariah Carey ever since, sharing vocal duties as well as having written songs with her. In 1992, Lorenz catapulted to fame with his MTV unplugged duet of "I'll Be There." On it, Trey displayed his incredible falsetto soaring to one of the highest notes a male can sing. The "Unplugged" concert was turned into a home video as well as a CD. Soon after, Trey found himself signed to Mariah Carey's then husband Tommy Matola under the EPIC label.  His self-titled debut effort was released to critical acclaim spawning the Top 20 hit single, "Someone To Hold."


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Trey Lorenz Exclusive Interview

by Rashmi Shastri

Trey was born in Florence, South Carolina on January 19th, 1969. His father is Lloyd Lorenz, the director of a local job-training program and his mother Bernice, a history teacher at local Wilson High. Both parents and Trey sang in church. Trey learned to read music through a brief stretch of piano lessons. When Trey met Mariah, he was in his junior year at Farleigh Dickinson University, majoring in advertising. Since then Trey has been touring with Mariah Carey as her backup singer, since her first promotional tour in 1990, for her debut album, 'Mariah Carey.' Not only touring, Trey has written songs with Mariah and they have become very close friends.

Trey has continued to sing with Mariah Carey. He has co-written songs for Mariah's album and continued to do background vocals. Trey toured with Mariah in 1998, singing "Let's Make This A Night To Remember," with Mariah's other backup singer Melanie Daniels. Trey also toured with Mariah on her "Rainbow Tour," in 1999 and then again in 2003 on the "Charmbraclet Tour," singing "I'll Be There," and leading the background singers in a song called "Friend of Mine."

Trey Lorenz sings backup vocals on Mariah Carey's latest album 'The Emancipation of Mimi.' Trey vocals are featured on four songs: 'Get Your Number,' 'I Wish You Knew,' 'Joy Ride,' & 'Fly Like A Bird.' Trey has been present on the promotional tour for the album.

Hi Trey, how are you? We finally got connected! I hear you’re performing in Texas tonight.

Yeah we are! It’s really hot out here and a friend of mine lives here so she’s coming to the show. At this point we’ve got the show down and everyone’s comfortable with each other so it’s going well.

So you’re just in the hotel room relaxing before the show right now?

I usually take an afternoon nap before having to go to the venue but this is a pleasant distraction having you call me.

How do you feel having completed a record by yourself after so long?

It’s been a long time since I’ve done a project by myself, I think it’s been fourteen years that I had my solo album out. I better do it now while I’m still sexy!

Tell me about Mariah’s involvement in this project.

Mariah and I always joke that we were two years old when we started. We decided to call the CD “Mimi Presents…” because she’s helped on a song or two but for the most part these are songs that I’ve done over the past four or five years. Every time we go on tour I don’t have any new material of my own to perform. Mariah’s fans are great, they are constantly asking her if I’m doing anything and it’s weird for me because I’m totally not the celebrity type. Eventually I just thought it was time to go ahead and do it. Mariah was gracious enough to lend her name to it.

I heard the track Pisces a few days ago, what’s the story behind that?

It’s rare that I write songs that are too personal because I want people to be able to relate. It’s about a friend of mine who’s a Pisces and I hadn’t seen her for a long time but when I did see her she was really cold which wasn’t her personality. Honestly, I just like the way Pisces rhymes with icy! Mariah’s singing the background vocals on that song.

Are there any other songs that we should know about?

One of my favourite songs on the album is It All Comes Back Around. As I’ve become older I’ve become more interested in the world. I’ve been blessed to be able to travel around the world and meet a lot of different people, the world almost seems smaller. I’m against war and all that nonsense; I guess I shouldn’t say that with the war going on right now. I’ve been to so many places and I must add that I love London…

Now that brings me to a very important question, when are you and Mariah coming over here to tour? Tell me the truth!

You know what there hasn’t been any talk of a European tour which I was really disappointed about because we always go to Europe. They’re adding dates to the tour but I don’t exactly know how it works, maybe the Europe promoters have to request it or something. I know we’re going to Japan for two weeks and they’ve added a show in Hong Kong but that’s the last I’ve heard personally. I don’t think there will be a UK tour with Mariah but everything changes around here so keep your fingers crossed, they might try and do something at the top of the year. She might just release a new CD then come over with that.

Is Mariah around you at the moment by any chance?

She’s on vocal rest at the moment which I probably should be doing myself! It’s where she doesn’t talk a day before the show and everything she needs to say she writes on cards.

What are the plans for your album?

I don’t even know if we’re releasing the record or have any agreement for distribution for my album. That would be my goal but for me I love to sing and I love music but I don’t want to be a celebrity. I’ve seen what Mariah goes through and I don’t want that type of life. This album is a gift to the fans. We need to change the tracks on MySpace to my favourite ones! You need to add me. I might try and do a video shout out to put on there as well. I haven’t had a record out in God knows when so it surprises me when people come up to me and ask where my new material is, it’s always flattering.

Things around you have been pretty hectic, how do you come back to earth?

For me it’s always been about the music. I went through a stage of “drinking and drugging” is what we call it. I shouldn’t even joke about that but you know like smoking weed and being unproductive, going out with friends and enjoying life excessively. When I started going back to church everything started to turn around and I’m grateful to God for that, that’s what my favourite song “My Everything” is about. We come from a very spiritual clique over here. Mariah performs Fly Like A Bird from the Mimi album and the lyrics really speak to me. That’s what it’s all about to me.

You’re going to be on tour with Mariah for a while, do you ever get stressed out?

What I really want to do is go around the world with Mariah on her down time. I’m getting tired of the travelling thing but if I was doing it on my own terms it might be different. I would like to give more people some of this soul explosion that’s in me!

What do you like about touring?

The audiences and the performances. I do like to travel sometimes but being away from home months at a time can be difficult. Sometimes it’s just like “I wanna drive my own car!” At the end of the day seeing people’s reactions is the coolest and overrides everything even if you’re missing home and family. I also like it when people wait for us outside and take pictures, I make them send me them. I like it that everyone’s so cool and still remembers me from all that time ago.

Of course they remember you! They won’t forget when it’s artists like yourself or Mariah. I’m still listening to old Whitney Houston.

Right, exactly. I actually heard that Whitney and Bobby are getting a divorce. I love Whitney to the point where one of the reasons Mariah and I clicked on a personal level was because we were the same age and liked the same type of music. I went to the Mariah session, not to sing, but just to go and someone said “this girl sings better than Whitney Houston” and I was thinking nobody can sing better than Whitney, then when I heard Mariah sing I felt totally different.

What do you all get up to when you’re backstage?

Sleeping! Mariah doesn’t even come in until 30 minutes before she goes on stage; she comes in made up and is ready to go. Sometimes we have a sound check and then eat something. We then have three hours to wait before going on stage so I have a nice blanket and pillow close by!

Do you have any special requests before going on stage?

Tea with lots of lemon and chicken wings!

What about the journeys to and from different venues?

After the show is when we really get the party started and get on the tour bus. We took a 20 hour drive to get here [Houston, Texas] which was pretty brutal. You should give me a call on the next long drive when we’re going to Canada there are always lots of people on the bus. It’s cool because we have a big TV and fun people on board. People I know in different cities are always asking me when I’m arriving but I really don’t know, the only thing I know is when it’s over! Everyone thinks that when you go on tour you party all the time but being the type of artist Mariah is we have to really sing so partying is a real no no. We’re only halfway through and don’t finish until November!

Do you have any favourite parts of the show?

I was so proud of Gnarls Barkley and their success that I perform Crazy in Mariah’s show which always gets a good reaction. I love the stuff that my parents listened to like Motown. They never had a problem with what I listened to because it was always one of their records that I wanted to play. LA Reid gave us the idea to do a tribute to Luther Vandross and as you know, Mariah sung Endless Love with Luther…

That’s so strange; I’m listening to Endless Love right now!

Get out of here!


Wait, listen…

Oh my goodness! Look at that, we’ve got a connection here.

Thanks for that, Trey. I’ll give you a call on your long drive.

Definitely, speak to you soon. Have a great day and thanks for the interview.

The new album from Trey “Mimi Presents…Trey Lorenz Mr. Mista” comes out on September 19th 2006.

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- By Samuel Burke
Mariah Carey brought her "Charmbracelet World Tour" to Phoenix, Arizona on August 23rd 2003. As always Trey Lorenz was singing backup. Photos are available in the Photo section. The Arizona Republic had this to say...
"Mariah's four back up singers were phenomenal, especially the charismatic and uber-talented Trey Lorenz. Just as he did 11 years before on MTV Unplugged, Lorenz joined Carey during a stunning rendition of Ill Be There.'"
After 'I'll Be There," Carey left the stage and Trey took the lead on a song sung with the three other backup vocalists called "Friend Of Mine."  
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- By Timothy White

He was a find at first sight, a star at first falsetto flight, and, while the world recognized the former backup singer's exceptional gifts the instant his pipes penetrated the troposphere on MTV's "Unplugged" last March, still nobody really knows Trey Lorenz. So Mariah Carey figures it's time we were all properly introduced.

"Everybody kept asking, "Who's the guy singing?" says Carey, swiveling giddily on a stool in the control room at Manhattan's Right Track Studios. She is describing the since oft-retelecast moment during the live "Unplugged" taping at Kaufman Astoria Studios when Lorenz cut loose on the "Jermaine part" of her cover of the Jackson 5's "I'll Be There." Fact is, Lorenz's aerial larynx acrobatics at the bridge of the vintage R&B classic proved the most crowd-pleasing eruption of vocal yearning since Carey's own high-pitched exploits on her May 1990 "Vision of Love" debut.

"I really didn't want all the fun and interest behind him with the "I'll Be There" record to go to waste," Carey continues, nodding to the gangly, grinning Lorenz, who's seated opposite her, "so we just went at it for about three months, worked really hard and made this." She flicks the mixing console faders forward to near-maximum volume level, while the tape begins to roll for "Someone To Hold," the kickoff single (written by Carey, Lorenz, and Walter Afanasieff) from the forthcoming self-titled Epic album, "Trey Lorenz."

What spills from the mixing-room monitors is a supple soul soprano, feathery but vibrantly flexible, that's been framed in a buoyant vocal arrangement by Carey. Sailing across a glistening tide-pool of descants from Mariah, Will Downing, Audrey Wheeler, and Cindy Mizelle, Lorenz's dusky-to-dulcet vocal lead is a decisive devotional oath, seemingly capable of any sort of coloration, yet never flaunting its myriad strengths. On a ballad this straight forward, the danger would have been to descend into the labored yelps and modulations that veteran R&B helmsman Jerry Wexler has described as "over-souling." Happily, as with album's other top tracks ("Always In Love," "Photograph Of Mary," "Run Back To Me," "It Only Hurts When Its Love," and a swirly rendition of the Commodores' "Just to Be Close to You", principal producers Afanasieff and Carey kept Lorenz" arsenal of agilities in check, reserving the gymnastics for points of legitimate storytelling impact. Guest producer Keith Thomas, known for his work with Amy Grant ("Baby Baby") and Vanessa Williams ("Save The Best For Last"), followed a similar, tightly controlled course with "Run Back To Me," harnessing Lorenz"s lung power as if shaping a series of horn solos. Consequently, "Trey Lorenz" has the same blend of proficiency and providence that brought him to the attention of both Carey and MTV's viewership in the first place.

"I met Trey in February 1990," says Carey, "when I was working on my first album. I was recording a song called "There's Got To Be A Way," and one of the backup singers was friends with Trey and had brought him down to the studio for the session. I heard someone singing all the high, top notes with me and I'm like, "Who is that?" I turned around and it was Trey.

"So he kept singing backup for me, working on my "Emotions" album, and then we went to Europe for appearances. Then last summer I was doing a rehearsal for a showcase show at the Club Tatou (in New York) and I had him sing for a couple of people at the label, a cappella, just riffing and ad-libbing -- and that was it.

"But we also were involved in the preparation for "Unplugged," and people kept saying to do an oldie. Two nights before the actual show I decided on "I'll Be There" and said, "Trey, why don't you sing the male part?" We had no plans to release the show on record when we originally did it, so the decision to put the song out as a single was a total fluke. Eventually, we decided we should get going on his album, and we wrote two songs, the second being 'Always In Love.'"

"It all happened just like she said!" exclaims the genial Lorenz, whose hectic discourse can rival the vivacity of his best serenades. "I just happened to be in the room when Mariah was doing "There's Got To Be A Way," and, you know, when you're in the studio so long, you get bored. I was singing along with the guys, just going along with the song, and that's when she heard me. At that point, I was in my junior year at Farleigh Dickinson University, majoring in advertising, and I had been in a group that had quickly disbanded called" -- he whimpers -- "Squeak & the Deep -- but we were only together for a minute!"

Lorenz's sheepishness concerning the outfit that immediately preceded his association with Carey is mild compared to his embarrassment with his initial reaction to the news that "I'll Be There" would be released as a single. Problem was, he couldn't honestly recall how he'd sounded on the performance -- which he hadn't heard since the "Unplugged" session -- and he feared the worst. "I was like, "Whoa! Let me hear it again!" I mean, great goodness, I think we were singing really good that day, but I wasn't so sure about me." He smirks. "I was really relieved when I listened.

"When the song actually debuted at 13 in Billboard," he adds, "that's when I really lost it -- especially after growing up in a small town where you don't have anything else to do but watch the charts, check the record stores, and dream."

Most of Lorenz's professional reveries occurred in and around the old railroad town of Florence, S.C., where Trey grew up a proud "pine-bred" son of Lloyd Lorenz, the director of a local job-training program, and wife Bernice, a history teacher at local Wilson High. Both parents sang in church, as did Trey, and he learned to read music through a brief stretch of piano lessons. But by pure coincidence, the first song he can ever recall singing was the Jackson 5's "I Want You Back." By eighth grade, he was winning talent shows with renditions of country pop like Eddie Rabbitt and Crystal Gayle's "You And I." He passed his freshman and sophomore years lending vocals and keyboards to the Players, a Top 40 band whose set list rambled from the Romantics to the Ramones.

The emergence of Trey Lorenz matches the equation of precocious talent rewarded with enthusiastic discovery that lifted Carey to international prominence. The two artists also share a fondness for a certain brand of material: "I really wanted to stick to melody," says Lorenz, "and not put out a track-oriented album so much as group songs that could hopefully stand the test of time."

Much of the warmth contained on "Trey Lorenz" may be derived from the undisguised glee Carey found in bestowing belief and support in the same measure it was once extended to her. Six tracks into her listening preview at Right Track Studios, Lorenz's mentor can hardly contain her pride with the fruits of her protege's labors."I'm trying not to talk too much and let the music speak for itself," she exults shyly, "but I think people are ready to hear him."

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Mariah's Work Is Quite A Production Lends Hand To Lorenz While Prepping New Set
- By Nda Newman

NEW YORK Mariah Carey has worked nonstop since recording her multiplatinum debut in 1989. However, when it came time to produce the Epic bow by her backup singer and protege Trey Lorenz, it was an offer she could not refuse.

"Trey is a really good friend of mine and he's one of the funniest people I've ever met in my life. He's so much fun to be around and he's really talented, so I was really into the project," Carey says.

Because of time constraints, she opted to produce or co-produce six of the tracks rather than the whole self-titled album, which is due in stores Sept. 29. Working with her on five of the cuts was Walter Afanasieff, with whom she shared a Grammy nomination for best producer last year for her Columbia album "Emotions." Producers on the other tracks were Keith Thomas, Mark C. Rooney, Mark Morales, Glen Ballard, and BeBe Winans.

Carey went into the project high on the success of her "Unplugged" EP and video. Taken from a taping of the MTV acoustic performance program of the same name, "Unplugged" showcases Carey in a stripped-down setting and introduced the world to backup singer Lorenz, with whom she duets on "I'll Be There."

Carey and Afanasieff were in the midst of writing material for her new album when "Unplugged" bulleted up the charts. "Trey came over and it became a Trey writing session instead," Carey says. "We just made the time to go in and do it. So many people had noticed Trey from "I'll Be There" and we wanted people to remember him from that and have that excitement."

Knowledge gained from the "Unplugged" experience made her a better producer, she says. She also learned a lot while in the studio."'Unplugged' taught me a lot about myself because I tend to nit pick everything I do and make it a little too perfect because I'm a perfectionist. I also learned a lot from working with Trey because when you're working with another singer and the singer's going, 'Oh, I hate that, that sounds horrible' and you're going, 'No it's great,' that's what everyone always does to me. I'll always go over the real raw stuff and now I've gotten to the point where I understand that the raw stuff is usually better."

That understanding shows on the six-pack of songs Carey produced. The tunes are polished and radio-friendly without being too slick or formulaic. The arrangements, which Carey also oversaw in most cases, range from lean and restrained on "How Can I Say Goodbye" to lush and layered on a remake of the Commodores' "Just To Be Close To You."

There is a cohesion to the tracks that belies the fact that Carey and Afanasieff were often producing 3,000 miles apart. "Walter would start the tracks out in San Francisco and he would the send the rough skeleton of the track out to me," Carey says"in N.Y. "I would put on all the backgrounds and leads with Trey. Walter came in at the end and we did more overdubs and things together."

Surprisingly, the toughest tracks for Carey to produce were the two she had co-written. "It's almost harder to do the ones I wrote because I'm sort of writing them as we go along. When you don't have a demo to refer to and you're doing the track, it's like, 'What am I going to sing on this line and how should the background go on this one?,' as opposed to when someone else has already written it and you just do it."

Because both Carey and Lorenz are singers, Carey says they could communicate on more levels than just producer and artist. "When you're a singer and someone is producing you who's not, they don't (always) understand when you want to do things a few times or when you want to try things out a different way. The producer should really make sure they are creating a great vibe and environment for the artist. You just have to reassure them and let them know that you understand how it feels. So I think if anything qualifies me to produce, it's that. I'm coming from that singing point of view."

For Carey, vocal arranging and singing background were the best parts of producing. "I love singing background vocals; that's my favorite thing," she says. "I love doing them by myself, but it's also fun singing with a group. Both Trey and I love R&B singing and gospel vocal arrangements. It was basically an unspoken thing where we just made the vocal arrangements a really dominant part of the music."

This project was so enjoyable, Carey says she is considering some other production plans, though she's keeping names close to the vest. "I have some things in mind that I really don't want to get into only because they're totally premature, but I have plans to do some other artists that I've encountered, possibly a contemporary gospel (artist). There are so many amazing songs that I would love to do over with someone else singing."

But for now, it's time to work on her third studio album. She goes back into the studio later this month with Afanasieff with lessons learned from her latest experiences. "Sometimes when I tend to do things by myself, I tend to double (my vocals) a little too exact and make it a little too slick sounding. But with this and 'Unplugged,' it did help me realize that you can make something tight without it being too tight and that's OK."


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The Mini-Biography from the Insert of the "Someone To Hold" Single

Trey Lorenz is a young man who is already familiar to thousands of people although they may not know his name! It was Trey's excellent vocals that featured on Mariah Carey's hit single 'I'll Be There.'

This amazingly talented 23 year-old now makes his debut as a solo artist with this single 'Someone To Hold,' co-written by Trey and Mariah Carey.

Trey Lorenz was born in South Carolina into a family of music loves, his own youthful favourites include Stevie Wonder, Marvin Gaye, Chaka Khan, and the Jackson 5, so it was especialy poignant when he was asked to guest on Mariah's version of 'I'll Be There.'

Trey Lorenz is an increble talent, a striking new voice singing for all the world to hear. He's going to be a big star and with a debut single of this quality everyone is going to be aware of him for a ling time to come.

Trey Lorenz - Just listen.