Interview: Kaylah Marin
Since Kaylah Marin’s debut album Loving Life dropped this summer, the Los Angeles based alternative-meets-soul vocalist has been on a whirlwind of performances, interviews and events. The soulful R&B singer/songwriter, known for her edgy alternative twist, has opened another door with the recent release of dance remixes to “On the Floor (Oh Baby Please).” The thumping track is earning Kaylah the #3 breakout artist spot on Billboard’s Club Play dance charts.
Teaming up with top producers Josh Harris (The Killers, Madonna, Seal), Tracy Young (Christina Aguilera, Britney Spears) Rod Carrillo, and Billboard’s top charting DJ’s The Perry Twins, Marin has chart topping dance mixes. We recently caught up with Kaylah to discuss her background and future plans.
SoCalMusicToday.com: How did you get started in the music business?
Kaylah: I have always been performing in different capacities. I used to do theater and plays, and poetry and paint. At some point I met my executive producer Laurie Andrewsen who offered to give me a chance to record some tracks of my own. When I went into the studio I got a chance to work with some great producers and once the music came out it was I think better than she expected and therefore decided to invest more and gone farther and farther with me.
SCMT: Did you ever think you would have this much success right off the bat.
Kaylah: No never! I try not to think about it too hard, which has been my M.O. I find that when I am just doing it, and I am not looking for anything, then things just happen. That has been the way it has gone. I try to just be open and create with people to bring the music in. That process seems to be working. It’s awesome
SCMT: What is up next for you?
Kaylah: We just finished the dance remixes, “On the Floor.” We are exploring doing some more remixes and I am looking forward to doing another album. I need to write all this material so we have more to sift through and hopefully we can have some more great producers to come work with us and go forward. In between that, we will still be doing performances and stuff and working on marketing the CD and dance remixes.
SCMT: Who are some of your biggest influences?
Kaylah: I have many. Growing up my mom just played a lot of music. She would play Barbara Streisand, Aretha Franklin, Diana Ross, Frank Sinatra and all that. Surprisingly I grew up loving that music, so that definitely influenced me a lot. Today I really love Alicia Keys and Mary J. Blige. In fact Mary J. Blige as a songwriter , I really love her lyrics and the base of it all, I really like her as a writer.
SCMT: Is there a dirty little secret artist that maybe is off the wall that nobody would expect you to like, that is not in your genre maybe?
Kaylah: (Laughs) Yeah.. Patsy Cline or Loretta Lynn. I am such a fan, it’s my mom’s fault but I am. Patsy is gone, but she did have a soulful country voice.
SCMT: Outside of music has there been anybody that has influenced you?
Kaylah: My family has been such an influence, with the love and support and just exposing me to so much art growing up, also my executive producer who just put a lot into me to make this happen. I think a lot of the artist out there today that are just doing it, a lot of different hip hop artists. A lot of the conscious hip hop I grew up with influenced me. Growing up in San Francisco and just being around a lot of the activism and the people who were just trying to be conscious and care and give back. That just makes me want to use my art to bring as much positivity as I can. All those things influenced me.
SCMT: It seems a lot of Political music comes out of up North. You have Boots Riley on the rap side who is now teamed up with Tom Morello in Street Sweeper Social Club.
SCMT: Why do you think that is?
Kaylah: What is it about the bay area? One of the things I really loved growing up in San Francisco was the larger than life characters we had. It was drama and color and theater and at the same time you have this really down to earth home feeling with the ocean and trees and just a really open nature based way of life. I think it is a great mixture of the nature and the concrete that makes a nice balance. I think it can make people better rounded and get them thinking about the earth and the world at large, while at the same time having the urban experience.