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Name: Adam Bernard
Home: Fairfield, Connecticut, United States
About Me: Entertainment journalist with 15+ years of experience. Supporter of indie music. Lover of day baseball, fringe movies, & chicken shawarma. Part time ninja. Nerdy, but awesome.
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The Eye Popping Miss Issa
Friday, March 23, 2007

Miss Issa (pronounced eye-za) is the stunning 25 year old San Diego native that’s starting develop quite the buzz in the R&B world. Her first single, “Stay Up,” featured Fat Joe and her second, a remake of the Expose classic “Let Me Be The One,” has a remix that features the ballin one himself, Jim Jones. With her debut album due out next month I sat down with the half Filipino – half Mexican beauty to talk about her Pokemon-esque childhood, her adoration of female fighters, and living out her mother’s dream of being on a track with Fat Joe (or something along those lines).

Adam Bernard: First off, you are gorgeous. How many people do you think get past that and even notice your singing?
Miss Issa: You know, I want to say maybe 70 or 80 or 90 thousand people. My MySpace pretty much tells it all. I don’t think people really know the real Issa. They see Miss Issa through my music but honestly, I’m a newbie to the industry, so there’s being controlled and what not. I don’t want to go into all that.

Adam Bernard: OK, so tell me the Miss Issa story. Where are you from and what are some of the events from your life that helped shape who you are today?
Miss Issa: I started out singing at five years old. My mother was a huge influence as far as music and she wanted me to sing so she started training me to sing. She would train me to sing Gladys Knight and a whole bunch of artists from back in the day. I was only five years old so I went with it and as I started growing up I kind of strayed from the singing because it wasn’t my thing at the time. I would always sing in the shower or the car or whatever, or in school, but I just didn’t think at that point that I would try to pursue it professionally. By the time I turned 16 was when it clicked in my head. I started watching a lot of BET and MTV and I would see all these people on television singing and I felt like it was destined for me for that to be my future. That’s how I got into this whole thing.

Adam Bernard: You said your mom trained you to sing when you were really young. Were you like a little singing Pokemon and she would send you out to other children and have you sing at them?
Miss Issa: Yeah. To be honest with you I think she wanted to live her dream through me because of that fact that she’s had opportunities in the past but she’s kind of taken the wrong direction so she threw me out there in public on some occasions and had me sing in front of a lot of people, like a couple hundred people at parks. I did it, I was a kid, I didn’t fuss about it, but later on I just started turning into a comedian on the microphone which was strange for my mother. That’s when I started straying from music.

Adam Bernard: And now you’re living out her dream of being on a track with Fat Joe.
Miss Issa: I don’t if she wanted to do a track with Fat Joe (laughs), but she’s definitely proud of me, I can say that much.

Adam Bernard: I’ve read up on you and noticed you’re very independent, even going out to the club alone.
Miss Issa: Sometimes I do. A lot of people would probably say that reeks of desperation, but you know what it is, I’m different, I don’t want to be with all my girlfriends and sometimes I just want to go out and mingle and make new friends and that’s it. I’m weird like that.

Adam Bernard: And I hear you come home to quite the full house because you have some pets.
Miss Issa: I have six pets so far but we’re trying to breed my two pitbulls. My younger one, his name is TJ, he’s not quite ready, but my older one, she’s ready so we’re just waiting to see what happens. I pretty much feel like sometime soon I’m gonna have a zoo.

Adam Bernard: Would you say your pets are spoiled?
Miss Issa: I would say they’re very spoiled. I’m at PetSmart spending like $500 every week just to make sure that they’re comfortable outside and inside the house. I was staying at a hotel once and I ordered filet mignon with mashed potatoes and I left it for my yorkie to eat because I went out with my brother and his friend in Houston and my brother looked at his friend and was like “man, the yorkie eats better than us!”

Adam Bernard: How hard is it for any man you bring home to get the seal of approval from the animals?
Miss Issa: You know, you’re probably going to laugh at me, but it’s been a helluva long time, so I wouldn’t even know. But all my animals are friendly. A lot of people say pit bulls are scary dogs and they’re the type of dogs that are real aggressive, but that’s a bunch of BS, it’s the way you raise them and all my animals are loving animals.

Adam Bernard: You said it’s been a while, so I’m wondering what qualities in a man do you find most attractive?
Miss Issa: It’s kinda hard to answer that question only because I haven’t been trying to look for a partner because of the fact of the my career, but if I was trying to look for somebody it would be somebody who’s decent looking, he doesn’t have to be the finest person in the world, but somebody with a good heart, lovable, loves animals, treats me really good, smart, good head on their shoulders. Pretty much the whole nine yards. (laughs)

Adam Bernard: I have good news. I qualify!
Miss Issa: (laughs) I thought you were going to say you just saved money on your car insurance.

Adam Bernard: Finally, tell me something about yourself that might surprise me.
Miss Issa: I’m pretty tomboyish, you can probably hear it in my voice. Usually they say you can tell how a person is the first ten minutes you talk to them and I don’t have a very dainty, feminine, voice. I’m not really girly. I dress the part, but there’s a lot of things I like to do, like box. I’m pretty athletic. I want to get into so many things it’s just finding the time.

Adam Bernard: So we’re probably more likely to see you watching a UFC event than something girly.
Miss Issa: Yeah, that was right on the money and you know what they actually have females now that are fighting in the UFC and that’s hot. I just saw a pretty girl the other day just dishin it out with some other girl and that’s so inspiring.

For more Miss Issa check her out at miss-issa.com and myspace.com/issabayaua. You can also see her video for “Stay Up” on YouTube.

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