LeToya Luckett : From Destiny’s Child to platinum solo artist

    A Jamie Foster Brown interview
    (Excerpted from the April/May issue of Sister 2 Sister magazine)

    LeToya Luckett will probably always be known as one of the founding members of pop quartet Destiny’s Child; you know, the group that she helped start and worked hard to release two multi-platinum albums with before she was unceremoniously ejected nearly nine years ago? Despite that, she continues to work—singing, acting and being a businesswoman—to step out of the shadows of her past. And I just love it that each time I’ve sat down to talk to this lovely, soft-spoken star, she’s had only positive things to say about her life and everyone in it.

    This time, Lucky Luckett and I met in New York, where she was visiting to promote her new album and movie. We talked about everything from her successful designer clothing boutiques (she owns two in Houston, each named Lady Elle), her churches (yes, she attends two of those too), and what she’s looking for in a man. I’m always so interested in speaking with young women about how they approach dating and am happy to know that LeToya has a good head on her shoulders.

    And you know I had to ask her about her new projects. She’s releasing an album called Lady Love on May 19, and she’s wrapped a movie called Preacher’s Kid (co-starring “Half & Half” actress Essence Atkins) and was excited to tell me all about how she got the lead role in it.

    LeToya also recorded a personal message to her fans and the S2S family for my Web series “Jamie’s Kitchen.” Log onto s2smagazine.com/s2sTV to see!
    Now read on for my all-inclusive chat with sweet-as-she-can-be LeToya.

    Jamie: How’s the boutique doing? You’re opening up another one.
    LeToya:  I opened up another one in the Houston Galleria.

    Jamie: That’s a big thing, right? Is it hard to get in the Galleria at Houston?
    LeToya:  It is. First of all, I live in the Galleria. I shouldn’t, but that’s, like, my favorite mall in the whole wide world.

    Jamie: Why?
    LeToya:  Because they have every store you could ever imagine, and they have a big ice skating rink in the middle of the mall.

    Jamie: Can you ice skate?
    LeToya: Yes.

    Jamie: What’s the name of the boutique?
    LeToya:  Lady Elle Boutique.

    Jamie: Lady Elle, and the other one was where?
    LeToya:  It’s in Uptown Park. It’s about 10, 15 minutes from the Galleria, but one is more, like, my higher-end stuff. The Galleria is the more affordable stuff.

    Jamie:  Why is that?
    LeToya:  It’s a different kind of crowd.

    Jamie:  Okay. That was your first one. Why do you think it did so well?
    LeToya:  It was my mom. She basically helped me to open everything. She’s there every day, so we built a lot of relationships with our customers. Every time they came in, nobody stayed less than, like, 45 minutes. It was that whole hair salon environment, where everybody sat around and talked and gossiped and this whole thing and got a outfit.

    Jamie: Okay. So they sit there talking. But do you think your fame added to that?
    LeToya: When I’m at home, I do work at the store. I go in, ring people out, help people out, do everything.

    Jamie: Do they ask you about your career, or do they know?
    LeToya: They do. I’ve had people be like, “Why are you here?” I’m like, “Uh, because I own the store.” But not just that; people will come in, “Well, when is your next CD coming out?” or “I love this CD” or “That was my favorite song.” Of course, my mom has decorated it with plaques and all.

    Pick up the April/May issue of Sister 2 Sister magazine to read how LeToya runs her shops and what she thinks of her pastor, Joel Osteen.