Image Courteous of the Internet :)
Interview by Dom Ellis
Circa Summer '14
Today’s music industry is highly saturated with artists fighting to prove to the world that they can make the dopest, up-to-date, relevant music. For Bay Area native, Kehlani, the skating tattooed songstress and trained dancer, is rolling the dice and going out to show the world her vision through soulful singles and spicy visuals. She isn’t afraid to be the only girl in the crew like Sammie from the 90’s Nickelodeon show Rocket Power, and she’s learned to keep it down to earth through jamming out to Lauryn Hill. She’s ready to climb the ladder of success and battle her way through the mass market of music makers, and seeks to prove it through her single ‘FWU’ and forthcoming EP. I mean have you heard ‘ANTISUMMERLUV’? Girls got soul (and steez ).
You’re originally from the Bay what are you doing in L.A.?
I’m just here to be here. You know when you’re from the Bay and you’re ready to take it to that next level you gotta move to L.A., that’s me right now.
You recently tweeted you are releasing your single “FWU” April 24th. You also hinted toward a “spicy” visual to go with it and a forthcoming EP. What can we expect?
A lot of people don’t know I dance so it’s actually the first video I’m dancing in. I originally wanted to drop the EP on my birthday but I decided to hold it back. I just don’t want to overwhelm anybody or give them too much at once. I didn’t wanna put out too much too soon. I really want people to see and feel me.
So you’re a model. How’d you get into the fashion industry?
I wouldn’t say I’m a model, I’m more of a clothing promoter. People just started giving me clothes to wear and I would do some shoots. It’s easy and fun.
You have some interesting tats. Two in particular: the Lauryn Hill and the Sam from Rocket Power. Has Lauryn Hill or Sam inspired you or contributed to who you are?
Yes, my Ms. Lauryn Hill tattoo just reminds me to keep going, and to no matter what always keep my head up. I grew up listening to her and she inspires a lot of what I do as a singer. I connect with Sam (From Rocket Power) because she was the only girl in the crew. She was a rugged tough girl that could skate just as good if not better than the rest of the squad.
Your music is soft and delicate yet you have tattoos and you skate, how do those things define you?
That’s the beauty of it, it doesn’t. I have tattoos and I skate but how I feel on the outside is totally different from how I express myself and feel on the inside. I don’t think that my appearance and how I feel on the inside have to match.
So you skate and you sing, so who do you think would win in a celebrity death match, Chris Brown or Tyler the Creator?
Ooooh, have you seen Tyler under his shirt? He is ripped! But at the same time I feel like Chris has a deep crazy side that’s waiting to be unleashed. They’re just two totally different levels of crazy. I don’t even know, maybe Chris, I just can’t say.
Who can we see you teaming up with in the future?
I’m looking forward to working with a bunch of people. I just did some stuff with Bobby Brackins. He’s really good at making up-to-date main stream relevant music, so lookout for some big stuff with me and him.