Nyticka Tiki Hemingway and Chuck Young
Nyticka “Tiki” Hemingway & Chuck Young
By Kevin Zimmerman
Nyticka “Tiki” Hemingway & Chuck Young: Straight To The Top
Having scored hits for Usher, City High, and others, R&B singer/songwriters Nyticka “Tiki” Hemingway and Chuck Young – collectively known as 925 – are now turning their attentions to developing their own performing careers.
“I’d demoed a gazillion songs to a bunch of artists,” Hemingway says of her forthcoming album Introducing Tiki. “It felt like the time was right to give it a shot.”
Young describes his own See Why (a title punning on his initials) as “a labor of love for as long as I can remember. It’s about being seen as a singer/songwriter, beyond just being a singer.”
The pair already each have singles – Hemingway’s sinuously evocative “Sippin Tea” and Young’s seductive, slow-burning “Loser” (featuring Hemingway) – making waves on iTunes and other services, and are actively being courted by several labels.
It’s an exciting time for the 925 brain trust, who first started working together when they were both employees at the same bank. A partnership was soon formed.
“We’re flexible enough that if one of us has a hook but no lyrics, the other one can step right in, and vice-versa,” Young says. “No one person does one thing.”
“As much as we have a process,” Hemingway adds, “there is no set process.”
The New Jersey natives wear their heritage on their sleeves. In fact, the “925” moniker refers not just to their round-the-clock work habits but also to exits 9 and 5 – where each lives -- on the Jersey Turnpike. “We each have studios in our homes, and we’re always talking on the phone,” Hemingway says, “prioritizing and re-prioritizing what’s next.”
And that, Hemingway says, is “diving headfirst into our albums. Remixes, promotion, setting up different avenues to get released properly. We want to parlay the 925 writing team into a 925 label, and we may even develop other artists down the line.”
When asked what being a part of SESAC has meant to them, Young is unequivocal. “SESAC has been nothing but a blessing. There’s real love and attention that you can feel there, and they’ve introduced us to some great people.”
“SESAC is like a really good private school,” Hemingway adds, “very hands-on, more personal, than the other performing rights groups out there. They can help point you in the right direction.”
And that direction, they say, is straight up to the top.