It’s not often you get to work with some of the music industry’s greats like Usher, Mary J. Blige, and Robin Thicke.
At least for most of us. But for Robert ‘Elijah Storm’ Daniels, he’s been doing it for years.
“Being hands on with the industry people, in the backgrounds, and in every aspect of the industry, I’ve been there,” said Daniels.
Growing up in a family of singers, Daniels knew what he was destined to do.
“It kind of trickled down to me, I don’t know how, my mother started giving me lessons when I was like 5 or 6,” he said.
And years later, he made history, winning a Grammy for songwriting for Usher’s 2004 Confessions album and writing multiple hits on the billboard charts with a range of artists including Robin Thicke, Cee Peniston, Angie Stone, All 4 One, and Mya. He’s also made a name for himself in film with the soundtrack to the movie S.W.A.T. and The Fast And The Furious Tokyo Drift.
Now he’s here in Cleveland sharing his secrets with local teens and young adults, like Jordan Lee, who has already sat in one session with Daniels.
“It was different, but I felt the difference,” Lee said as he wrapped up his vocal coaching session.
Daniels hopes it is a different experience, wanting to not only teach and enhance vocal skills, but life skills, using his own story of struggle and overcoming the odds, to inspire them.
“What I’ve been through is, I’ve been through a lot,” Daniels said.
Growing up in projects of Los Angeles, he knows about hard times, the grind of it all, but he also knows there is hope and that's the message he wants to spread.
“You gotta know there’s hope. And that’s the thing I have to offer,” he said.