Here Is What Love Can Do
With songs like “Last Kiss Goodbye,” “Don't Know How To Love You,” and Vicetone’s “Something Strange,” vocal powerhouse Haley Reinhart might seem like someone that is nothing like the average person: Top 3 on American Idol, platinum certification, and a strong social-media following – but under all those countless accolades and achievements is actually just a vibrant young woman from Chicago that loves to sing and dance.
28-year-old Haley Elizabeth Reinhart was born in Wheeling, Illinois, a small suburb of Chicago with a population of about 40,000. Ever since she was a kid, Reinhart has aspired to be a musician. From singing harmonies with her parents to watching them play in their band, she would cry at concerts because she pictured herself up on that stage. She knew what she wanted from a young age, and worked long and hard towards that goal.
The first step she took towards that goal was with her parents. Singing along with her parents on stage at the age of three started her journey. Afterwards, writing poetry and studying jazz in college were her next steps. Along the road, many similar steps were taken, but perhaps the biggest leap forward was her performance in the tenth season of American Idol. Placing third, Reinhart gained national recognition and signed a recording deal shortly after. She released her debut album Listen Up! a year later. Now, six years after her first album, Reinhart boasts an impressive resume: a platinum certification for her cover of Elvis Presley’s “Can’t Help Falling in Love,” voice actor and co-star of Netflix original series F Is for Family, an impressive social-media following of nearly a million people, and more than one million monthly listeners on Spotify.
In case you think you can’t personally relate to Reinhart at all, though, here is the thing: Some people don’t even know how to do their laundry at 28. All the jokes aside, Haley Reinhart has her own hobbies, favorite holiday, and childhood memories – just like you.
One of her hobbies is science and astrology. A frequent customer of her local bookshop, Psychic Eye, she likes to read books and learn more about astrology. Interested in rocks that hold energy, she doesn’t let things take over in life but tries to understand what those things mean. She is attracted to amber, which, according to her, “is the color of energy,” and is good for creativity, passion, and maintaining a Zen state of mind. Along with crystals, she is also interested in astrology readings. Taking each reading with a grain of salt, the main takeaway is to look for your own interpretation within the reading.
Reinhart also likes to travel. Among the many places on her list, Brazil and Argentina make the top. “I grew up in Chicago with a really big Latino population so the language and music have always been enticing to me,” she says. One of the favorite places she has been to is Bali (she actually wants to go back there for her honeymoon).
On another note, she likes to socialize too. “I like to meet up with my friends and go out dancing, lay out in the sun doing nothing, yoga, and definitely shopping. Shopping should definitely be higher up on that list,” she shares.
Her most memorable childhood memory is the same block party she went to every 4th of July. “The streets were blocked off, my parents’ band would be playing, and kids you would only see once a year were having balloon fights,” she recalls, adding that it was a simpler time where all she had to worry about was who to throw a balloon at next and which firework to focus on. She then mentions Christmas – in a time of freezing temperatures and snowfall, it’s always heartwarming and comforting to go back home to family and unwind. “My boyfriend’s family is also from Chicago so it’s a great time to be able to see everybody at once,” says Reinhart. “Going back home and seeing the snow, it helps me think about everything I’m grateful for.” We also discuss gifts because Christmas wouldn’t be Christmas without gifts. One of the best gifts she has given to someone is a stove for her parents; one of the best gifts she has received is a record player from her boyfriend. She further elaborates that it’s not always about the creativity or price or magnitude of the gift but it’s about the little things, and it’s about paying attention – and that’s what makes a great gift.
In the future, Reinhart wants to have a family: one boy and one girl. She wants to have a place to live in Europe. And, she wants to go back in time and give her younger self some advice: Everything is temporary, any hardships are not forever, and people can always change for the better. “I’m a very rooted person with a lot of love to give to the world. I always stay true to myself, I’m strong-willed, I know what I want, and I want the best out of myself and for people,” she candidly says. “I want to help bring that out of them while simultaneously staying true to myself. It’s all I’m about. But, at the same time, I’m also pretty wacky. I do a lot of funny voices, and I just like to be super-goofy. Life is much too short not to laugh a lot.”
Writer: Kevin Chau
Photographer: Seung Lee (www.kokumastudio.com)
Photographer Assistants: Andy Kim & Mason Kim
Stylist: Marc Littlejohn (@marcalittlejohn - for Ken Barboza Associates Inc.)
Hair: Iggy Rosales
Makeup: Dillon Peña (for TheOnly.Agency - using Milk Makeup)
Videographer: Wanhi Lee
Editor: Eiko Watanabe
Special thanks to Amber Thayer (@amberthayer - www.amberthayer.com) & The
Henry (@thehenryrestaurant - www.thehenryrestaurant.com)