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Meet “Single Ladies” Star — Anthony Montgomery


Single Ladies’ fans, you may dislike his character, Darryl Jenkins, but I recently got an opportunity to discover who the man behind the camera truly is. Humble, ambitious, and dedicated are just a few words to describe him and he definitely has a lot in store for himself as well as his fans on his continued road to success. Rising star, Anthony Montgomery dropped in to chat about his journey to Hollywood, the truth behind his Single Ladies’ character, his music, and the near launching date of his first graphic novel, “Miles Away”.

Charli > Hi Anthony! How are you?

Anthony > I’m doing great Charli, how are you?

Charli > Awesome, I’m wonderful. Thank you. So what was it that actually jump started your career?

Anthony > College. I got a degree in Performance Theater & Drama from Ball State University. I left from there and sang in an R&B group in Chicago for a year, then moved back to Indiana and started doing stand up comedy for a year, and finally moved out west.

Charli > What was your experience like on Star Trek: Enterprise, playing the role of Travis Mayweather?

Anthony > It was a great time! That was obviously my real big break. Because of the legacy that the Star Trek franchise has, it changed everything for me; it completely changed the game for me. I learned a lot about being in front of the camera. I learned a massive level of professionalism, so it helped to keep myself grounded amidst all of the chaos that my life had been turned into. But overall, it was a pretty amazing experience quite honestly. To be able to go to work and do what you love on a daily basis and actually get paid well! [laughter]

Charli > Talk about your role on Single Ladies. I was really pulling for you [laughter] to overcome your dilemma with April, but I’m speechless! What happened to your character?

Anthony > [laughter] What happened? April cheated on Darryl! He was hurt so he went after her money. He wasn’t going after it because he’s a gold digger. [laughter] A cheat is a cheat. Y’all never one time say, “Well you shouldn’t be that mean to him.” Women never do that. So that’s what I’ve gotten when people respond to Darryl. They say, “I know she cheated, but you don’t have to be that mean, you don’t have to do that to her.” Okay… so what’s the balance?

Charli > I took two questions from twitter. The first question comes from a Single Ladies’ fan @Iam_HellOnHeels: Why did your character Darryl choose to leave without trying to work it out with April?

Anthony > That’s a good question. He did try to work it out. He went through therapy sessions. I don’t know what our brilliant writer Stacy Littlejohn had in mind for him. [laughter] I think Stacy was brilliant in having it happen that way because it has created a massive controversy because Darryl was being the way that he was. Had she written it any other way, would people still care as much?

Charli > Right, good question! The second question comes from a fan, @CVRGRL87: Darryl seems to hate April now. I know the circumstances, but it’s funny how you went from one extreme to another. Was it really love to begin with?

Anthony > Yes, it was really love to begin with. Darryl doesn’t hate April. Darryl is hurt and when men hurt, we hurt very deeply. It’s that simple. Women are an emotional species. So we always know what’s going on with you. People probably would have felt differently if Stacy had written Darryl crying in a corner, begging her back when she came home that night. That would have made him seem weak. That would have made people go, “Man he’s too soft, she doesn’t need to be with him”. As a black man, that would’ve completely emasculated him in the eyes of everyone. It’s hard to find that balance when you have devoted your entire soul to someone and they break that covenant. How does a person respond? And what we saw was how Darryl would respond. You never saw Darryl in his private moment where he was crying and just sitting at home, reflecting on everything and what he did to cause April to stray away from their relationship. In Darryl’s mind, he had done nothing wrong. He was truly loving her and everything he had done from the day he had met her, was to uplift her as a person. I don’t think that Darryl loves her less, but the pain that he has been dealing with, it completely enveloped his entire being. I’m not the writer, I’m the actor! [laughter] I create my reality based on what it is that’s given to me. From what I keep getting from several people, the drama of Darryl and April is a very grounded and real dynamic that people really are relating and connecting to.

Charli > I learned that you’re the grandson of jazz musician Wes Montgomery. How did you get into rapping and what inspired your single “Stimulation” that we heard on last week’s episode?

Anthony > Well first, what did you think of the song?

Charli > I thought it was a pop version of rap. I think it targets an entire audience. I enjoyed it! I heard it on the episode, but I also went back and listened to it on rhapsody.com

Anthony > So you got it. Well first and foremost, thank you on your support on that! So how did I get into hip hop? A good friend of mine and I used to freestyle all the time. I’m not very good at freestyling. To me, I need to actually sit down and make sure that I have coherent thoughts streaming together. I love music, but I just don’t love hip hop; I love all music. When I was on Enterprise, I completed an album with my own money and got a German record label that distributed me. I didn’t have an actual music team behind me because I was still focusing on acting. First and foremost, acting is what I do and love. I love the craft of acting and everything about it. This was just another extension of me creating myself and expressing myself in a creative fashion. I met a guy named J. Naugh – T! And he was truly instrumental in helping me bring this track to life and helping me find my tone while bringing in his flavor. I was able to get a product like this because of J-Naugh-T!, because of my cousin Darryl Treez Turner, and Myke Smith was the producer; I had an opportunity to have a song of mine placed on the show that I’m on. When we went into the studio I said “We aren’t leaving here until I have something magical.” I appreciate your feedback on it. You say it’s a “pop form of hip hop” and that’s exactly what I was going for. I think I should have been born on the east coast because I connect with most of the music out of the east coast more than I do anywhere else. Once Kenny and I met, he’s the supervisor of music on Single Ladies; once he and I met, he heard my song and said he wanted to put it on the show. So I went back and got it mix-mastered and sent it to him. They locked it in and I knew it was actually going to have a home. People love to hate me as Darryl, but I think people are loving to hate me as a rap artist. When I hear people say that it’s awful and that I need to stick to acting… I go, “the song is not that awful”. I listen to rap. I listen to the stuff that’s on the radio. My song can’t compete with any song that’s out there right now. So when I hear people say that it’s awful and that he needs to not do that, I’m going, “Are you sure about that?” [laughter] You can not listen to my song and tell me that my song is garbage. I want people to hear it and go, “I didn’t know Anthony Montgomery could do that, wow, he actually has a different set of skills completely!” [laughter] So what is it like being the grandson of Wes Montgomery? I did not know my grandfather. He passed away before I was born. He was my mom’s dad, so I would hear stories from my grandmother – his widow, my mom, my aunts, uncles, and then I went on a journey several years ago to discover him through his old musical partners and through different friends. So I’ve compiled about 60 hours of footage in a documentary format that I’m putting together. It will be a grandson’s discovery of a legend that happens to be his grandfather; and what price my grandfather had to pay to achieve the greatness that he was able to achieve. I’m honored that I’m apart of this family. I’m proud to be able to carry the torch in entertainment and excel in my field the way that my grandfather did in his.

Charli > Awesome Anthony. As it relates to your outside projects of Single Ladies, talk about your novel that you’re gearing up to release, “Miles Away”.

Anthony > My graphic novel, “Miles Away”, is about a 16 year old African American boy who has super powers and goes on a mission to find his parents and gets recruited by a secret organization on Earth by a couple of extra-terrestrials to come and liberate their own world. I just received the first 13 pages back in color. It’s going to be 96 pages, full color and I’m looking at a November/December launch of it. I’m looking at having an independent launch and doing everything myself. I’ve gone to various media outlets and Star Trek graphic novel publishers, but that would take 6 months to a year to have it ready. I don’t want to wait until December 2012; I want to go ahead and get it out to the fans. So I’m doing everything I can to get it out by the end of this year. I’m really excited about it and I will say again, it’s just one of those avenues of me creating myself and an extension of my entertainment side, just in the form of a book. Definitely want you to get your copy! [laughter] $14.99 when it comes out! [laughter] Please spread the word! [laughter]

Charli > Haha! I definitely will.

Anthony > Thank you Charli, I really do appreciate it. Honestly, you can never forget your core fans. My core fans are the Star Trek fans. That graphic novel is for them. I now have an extension through that core from Single Ladies fans and I love them dearly and want them to go out and join this ride in my graphic novel too. I know that Tyrese did a graphic novel called “Mayhem”, and now I have that same fan base that Tyrese has and I know people supported him in that, and I’m hoping that the people will get on board and support me the same way.

 

Charli > Is there anything else you would like to share with your fans and how can they connect with you?

Anthony > The biggest thing that I want my fans to know is that I truly, truly appreciate them. I know Darryl isn’t the most loved by the fans, and to me that means that I’m doing what I’m supposed to be doing. If I can evoke that kind of emotion out of you, that’s what my job is. That’s why I got into acting in the first place. I thank them for being supportive. Thank all you wonderful fans for giving Single Ladies a second season. Please continue to support your boy! Follow me on Twitter, @Amontgomery5. Check out my new website, AnthonyMontgomery.com. There is a contact link on there if anyone wants to get something to me. I want them to join me on Facebook as well, Anthony Montgomery Fan Page.

Charli > Thank you for your time!
Anthony > Thank you Charli and take care.

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