“To Be Young, Gifted And Black” – Ms. Donnita Hathaway

Donnita Hathaway

Twitter has provided us with a way to constantly meet new and interesting people……

I will proudly admit, I urbanSocialite AM A TWITTER ADDICT.  I am always down to follow average people who seem interesting, have similar career goals as myself, or people who at least have something entertaining to tweet on a daily basis (follow @lilduval, thats some pure entertainment right there).

So one day I happened to stumble upon the Twitter page of a woman by the name of Donnita Hathaway (@donnitacamille).  Her last name stuck out to me, but what also really caught my eye was her bio, “Chi-town girl, who now lives in A! I’m the PA for Musiq Soulchild, proud daughter of a musical legend. Love life & myself!“.   I was blown away.  She’s got the bomb ass job of being the Personal Assistant to Musiq Soulchild, one of the Hottest R&B stars out there (who I am a MAJOR fan of), she resides in ATL, and ON TOP OF THAT she’s the daughter of musical royalty Donny Hathaway (and anyone who knows me knows that I have been listening to the music of Mr. Hathaway since the age of 5)…so need I say more??  I knew right then and there, Donnita needed to be featured on fem-fATL pronto.

So I immediately contacted her via twitter, asked if I could interview her for fem-fATL, and she gladly agreed.  Besides the fact that she has a famous father, and works in an industry where she is around famous people on a constant basis, Donnita is a down to earth sweetheart.  Originally from Chi-town, Donnita is now an official ATLien.  She is a 33 year old female who is driven, intelligent, and yet is still down to have fun with a good laugh. Check out the interview I did of her below, she’s got a very interesting background.   You will see that she is the true definition of her late fathers famous song, “To be Young, Gifted And Black“, as well as the definition of a fem-fATL.

How did you become a Personal Asst. for Musiq Soulchild? How long have you been his PA?

5 Years.   Musiq was someone I was blessed to become friends with. He was a fan of my fathers (Donny Hathaway) & I was a fan of his. I love helping people so I asked him in 2002.  In 2004 I got the call!

What has it been like being a PA for one of the best R&B artists that are out there today?

I love it! It is hard work but it doesn’t seem like “WORK” Especially since I’m blessed to be working for one of my best friends!!!

I know that many people would KILL to have your awesome job.  So describe the typical day-to-day activities for a Celeb Personal Assistant.

It really depends on whether we are on the road or not. If on the road there are generally radio station interviews, early morning wake up calls, sound check, meet & greet and the show.  So there’s prepping for those events ie gathering clothes, making tea, getting something to eat. I like to make sure that his band is ok….things of that nature.

What is your ultimate goal…where do you see yourself in 5 years?

Hope to have a family while still working. I want to blossom into a beautiful graceful woman!

What is the 1 thing that people would be surprised to know about you?

I don’t sing!!!!!

What are some of the perks that come along with your job?

I like to see when Musiq’s fans tell him that his songs has done something to change their lives. I think that’s awesome because I know that’s what Musiq’s intent is.  And….. every now & then I get some free clothes!

Where are some of the interesting places that your job has allowed you to travel to?

Japan, South Africa, Europe & Indonesia.
Indonesia was interesting because there are so many rich & poor people. There’s no medium. Just driving from the airport some of Jakarta looks 3rd world other parts looks like heaven. It’s really something to experience.

Who are some of the interesting celebs that you have met?  Have you met any of your idols (what happened when you met them, did you freak out?)
I’ve meet a lot of celebs before I got this job. One person that I met just last week that I just loved was Jennifer Hudson! I love when artist perform any of my fathers music. I was at a show of hers and jumped out of my seat when she sang ‘I believe in music” which is not known to many. So it was a risk especially with where she is in her career. So I had to tell her thank you for that & she’s also a Chicago girl. She was surprised to meet me & was very sweet.  I don’t “freak out”, I feel at home.

When you want to chill, where are some of your fav hangout spots in ATL?

Ummmm I’m still trying to find that out? Lol  I love to laugh so Uptown Comedy Club is a must. Atlantic Station is cool.

Whats the 1 word you would use to describe yourself, and why?

Silly! I love to laugh and have fun even if it’s to my own amusement.

Coming from a musical family, how do you feel about music today?  Who are some of the top artists in your opinion that are keeping GOOD music alive?

I’m not a huge fan of some of what’s mainstream. I’m more of a underground baby. But more so the stuff that is aimed at kids is just that.
Artist keeping good music alive? There’s A LOT! Of course Musiq Soulchild, my sister Lalah Hathaway, India.Arie, Jill, Scott.  I also dig Hip Hop. Kanye West, Jay-Z, Common, I love the creative nature of J*Davey & N.E.R.D just to name a few.

The legendary Mr. Donny Hathaway, Donnita's father

You come from an extremely talented music royalty family, with your father being an R&B legend, and your sister Lalah Hathaway being an extremely awesome singer as well.  Have you ever wanted to venture into singing yourself?

No ma’am! Lol I will leave the singing to the professionals .Because this business is a tough one I’d rather be on the other side of things.

I consider myself an old-soul, and I’m such a HUGE fan of your father, I cherish the vinyl albums that I own of his music.  “Someday We’ll All be Free” is my favorite song and it provides such an inspiration.  What is your favorite song from your father’s music, and why? …there are so MANY to choose from.

“Sack full of dreams” hands down. The music, the lyrics, the delivery is all perfect to me.

Your father’s music and lyrics have influenced many of today’s R&B artists. What is the best advice or lesson that your father gave you?
I was 2 when my father passed so I don’t have anything personal but I do use his music as a tool. I can go back to a song like “Sack full of dreams” and say “I know daddy would want me to be happy and make my dreams come true & love life!”



on ““To Be Young, Gifted And Black” – Ms. Donnita Hathaway
6 Comments on ““To Be Young, Gifted And Black” – Ms. Donnita Hathaway
  1. i know her personally and she is one of the absolutely sweetest ladies you’d ever meet in life. down to earth is an understatment. such a pure spirit, sweet as pie. that has got to be grounding to have a music legends daughter so untainted by the industry to keep you in the right head space for a friend and pa.

  2. Hello, my name is Paul Johnson Jr. I am a singer, songwriter, musician and playwright. I’m contacting you in hope that we can connect to discuss a Tribute show I want to present in memory of your father, the late, great, Donny Hathaway Nov. – Dec. 2013. I have produced, written and directed several original stage plays in the Metro Detroit area although Im looking to expand. I have been I have a similar sound to that of your father, even Stevie and Marvin. Please call me so we can discuss further business in regards to copyright, compensation for the Hathaway family and overall preservation of Donny’s music. PLEASE Call me: 313-7O4-5736.

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