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Tank on earning his first gold record at age 42: As long as you still have a story…you can rock


Taj StansberryTank recently achieved an extraordinary milestone in his decades-long career: earning his first-ever gold-certified single with his song, “When We.” 

But he tells Vulture that being able to add that accomplishment to his resume at the age of 42 is even more significant.

He says, “You become a 42-year-old R&B singer and everybody says, ‘You’re old, start doing as many shows as you can with [71-year-old] Frankie Beverly and call it a wrap.'” 

“We didn’t want to give up,” he adds. “We wanted to keep changing the perception of where R&B can live.”

Then there are Tank’s peers, such as J. Valentine, who believe in the star’s versatility and generational appeal. 

Valentine tells Vulture, “Tank is probably the only artist who can do go a show with Frankie Beverly and host the hottest club in the city that night. [He can] have a song with Jacquees but still be respected by Mary J. Blige. He lives in all of those worlds.” 

In fact, according to Atlantic Records’ Vice-President of Marketing, Grace James, Tank’s appeal to young fans, particularly 16 to 24-year-olds, means the song could be a “potential top five record”.

“Younger fans were gravitating towards [“When We”] on their own. That’s when I knew there was something going on,” she says.  

Overall, Tank hopes that his success with “When We” can encourage other artists “from my generation to not feel like it’s over.”

“As long as you still have a story, a fire burning in you, you can rock — I’m living proof,” he adds.  

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