'Empire' Cast Premieres 'Hourglass' feat. V. Bozeman: Exclusive Early Listen

Empire Cast 2015
Courtesy of FOX

A still from the "Without a Country" episode of "Empire."

When the second episode of Empire, “Without a Country,” airs Sept. 30, among the guest stars popping up will be Ludacris, Kelly Rowland, Becky G, Andre Royo and V. Bozeman. As fans will recall, Bozeman put an exclamation point on the first season of Empire with her captivating performance of “What Is Love.”

Now Bozeman ramps up that oh-wow factor with “Hourglass.” Among the songs introduced in the upcoming second episode, the powerful ballad was co-written and co-produced by Terrence Howard, aka Lucious Lyon, and Max Beesley. Underscoring the song’s beautiful but tragic love story is the striking range of Bozeman’s soulful vocals.

“Terrence told me he wrote the song during one of the lower points in his life,” recalls Bozeman, whose first name is Veronika -- the same as her Empire character. “When he asked me to translate that emotion for him, I said, ‘You don’t have to tell me. I’m in.’ The song was created in a lower register but Terrence wanted it higher. Going full-blast and exercising my vocal muscles like that took me back to church.”

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That fearlessness is one of the qualities Bozeman shares with her television alter ego. “She’s a lot like me,” says the South Central Los Angeles native. “She’s driven; very determined to make her dreams come true. She possesses the fire and willingness to go toe-to-toe with whoever to get what she wants.”

Bozeman is concurrently fueling momentum behind her real-life career. Best-known for her stirring duet and sensual video with Timothy Bloom on “’Til the End of Time” (2 million-plus YouTube views), the artist is signed to Timbaland’s Mosley Music Group. He is featured on Bozeman’s new single “Smile.”

Its video will hit Vevo on Sept. 30, while the single will go to urban AC radio on Oct. 5. “Smile” will be featured on both Bozeman’s Music Is My Boyfriend album, slated for second quarter 2016, and Timbaland’s forthcoming set, Opera Noir. Managed by Max Gousse and Monica Payne and repped by CAA, Bozeman will join R&B artists Raheem DeVaughn and Leela James on a 25-city tour kicking off Oct. 7 in Charleston, South Carolina.

Click here to pre-order songs from this week's episode of Empire.