Miguel Wears Suspenders On First Date

R&B singer talks about his fashion-forward style over Japanese barbecue.

It might’ve been a First Date with Miguel, but Miguel had been around long before he and I took to the grill at Gyu-Kaku. With 2010′s “All I Want Is You,” featuring J. Cole, the singer defined himself with a sound and image that can’t quite be classified: a little R&B, a little hip-hop, a little sexy and a lot of swag.

Despite all those adjectives, he’s nothing but a genial, level-headed and funny guy in person, and he hopes for a girl with the same outlook. “I think that life should be lived on the light side; there’s enough bullsh– that we deal with. Having a sense of humor makes things a lot easier,” he explained when asked what the most important trait for his lady ought to be.

The 25-year-old crooner showed up to our date dressed to impress: sporting tailored, jade trousers, a rust-colored coat and suspenders, Miguel’s interest in fashion is evident upon first glace. In fact, he considers following it to be one of his prime interests outside of making music. His other non-musical hobbies remain creative: He cited iconic ’80s artist Jean-Michel Basquiat as one of his greatest influences and photography as another passion of his, finding David LaChappelle’s work especially compelling.

But like any artist, he hopes to inspire just as much: “I really hope to come to a place where I’ve achieved some kind of trust with my audience. The kind of trust that allows me some kind of influence … influence to effect some kind of social change.”