ARTIST NAME: KIA
SONG TITLE: Worth It
ALBUM TITLE: Tomorrow’s Mind
RELEASE DATE: April 28, 2020
Dutch and Indonesian singer KIA is an authentic artist based in Los Angeles whose soulful sound and memorable timbre are ready to be heard. Much like her own mixed heritage, her music is a blend of various genres; a base of neo-soul with a strong emphasis on pop and touches of jazz, funk, hip-hop, and R&B.
KIA has written and recorded for several productions like web-series “Hard Medicine” (USA), G’Day productions “Honoring Liam Hemsworth and Helen Reddy” and “Standing Together” (USA), movie “Help! I Shrunk My Friends” (Germany), upcoming series “Madam$” (USA), and “The Walkers” (USA).
She recently received her first American Award (NAMM President’s Innovation Award), became a top finalist at the IMSTA songwriting competition, a semi-finalist at the International Songwriting Competition, and with her solo project she just released her latest single “Worth it.”
Discuss your singing ability.
I always listened to pop and soul music when I was younger and tried to emulate the sounds, the phrasing, and the articulation of the singers. I wasn’t serious back then though; it wasn’t until I was about 17 years old that I really started taking classes and developed a specific sound. This didn’t happen overnight; I studied jazz and pop music at a conservatory and I just finished my master’s degree in commercial music.
Tell us the reason you want to sing.
I feel a sense of freedom when I sing. I love to share my interpretation of something and connect with people’s senses and emotions.
Tell us your most memorable live performance.
Oh wow, there are so many. If I must be brutally honest, every live performance is memorable to me. You create something magical together with the band, so every gig is different, and every audience is also different.
Discuss how you build your song.
This differs from time to time. Sometimes something pops into my head and I need to record it quickly or make a quick production in Logic. Then I’ll send it off to a producer who can make the song sound good.
But most of the time I’m co-writing with producers and other writers and things can happen from scratch. It depends a little bit on what kind of song I’m writing, but most of the time I start with the hook, a theme, or a word and then build a whole world around it.
Tell us how you impress your fans with your music.
I want people to feel something rather than impress them. Music to me is more like a self-journey rather than a competition. Everyone has his/her own path and if my music takes you to where you need to go, then that’s a beautiful thing.
Discuss the relevance of promotion to the music business.
Promotion is necessary for your music to get heard and to reach people outside of inner your circle. Finding creative and effective ways to do this like good visuals for advertisement, email lists, and social media strategies will help you along the way.
Tell us what you will do apart from music.
I love cooking, organizing, and clearing my mind every now and then at the beach…
List the names of the instruments you can play.
Piano and trumpet.
Tell us if you have any music background.
Back when I was a kid, I played trumpet, French horn, and classical guitar. But unfortunately, I kind of dropped this when I got older. I picked up the trumpet again as a minor for my Bachelor of Music degree, but I put more focus on piano playing at that time so that I could write my own music.
Tell us the piece of advice you will give to a new artist on entering the music chart.
Don’t let up. Keep your foot on the gas pedal.
Elaborate on melody and rhythm.
These two things are so intertwined and yet so not. They always have to work together but they can be contrasting at the same time. It’s like a love and hate relationship except maybe not that extreme…
Tell us about your future goals.
I want to write, record, and perform as much as I can. I’ll always keep working on my art and share my stories through my original songs.
I want to continue writing and recording for productions, TV and movies, and my solo project.
My near goal is to work towards a publishing deal.
Share your music experience with us.
I strongly believe that in every phase of our lives, music is what will always connect us. It will move us into a better place when you’re up and down, and especially now during these hard times of the pandemic. All we have to be is patient, safe, and smart and the tide will turn.
Tell us the most difficult part of the recording.
Sometimes it’s hard to get fully into the emotion of a tune. You don’t have the audience in front of you; just a microphone so it really comes down to an inner reflection and your job is to translate that through your voice.
Discuss the greatest mistake you have ever made in your music career.
Always wanting to help others; which is not necessarily a bad thing, excepts when it gets to a point that people take advantage of you.
Tell us how you build up your composition.
I like to start with the music, and then the instant composition of lyrics and melodies. The music already gives me so much information; a vibe, an emotion that will most likely lead to a story.
When I found something to grab on, I sometimes make a mind map with this word or theme and try to come up with as many words as I can that are connected to it and work from there.
Discuss the relevance of the lyrics to the listeners.
Lyrics are most of the time not the first thing people listen to, unfortunately, but nonetheless, I believe every word should mean something to the person who wrote it. It can be interpreted completely differently by a listener…
Elaborate on the song.
When the song first started, I had this idea of self-love in a social setting, it was based on an external personal experience, but as I continued writing and listening to it, it applies in so many different aspects of life. Something we don’t stop searching for. There will be struggles and there will be doubt, both external and internal, but the only person who is going to get you out is yourself. It’s important to find self-love, self-respect, and self-worth. These lyrics couldn’t be more honest to me.
Elaborate on your artist’s name and the title of the album.
Well KIA doesn’t stand for KIA Motor as I get the joke many times.
My full name is Saskia and ever since high school people started calling me Kia which kind of got stuck with me.
The title of the studio live album “Tomorrow’s Mind” (which will be happening when things are going back to normal again) is part of a lyric from my song “All Night”, where I’m saying; “Tomorrow’s Mind Ain’t Nothing But a Yesterday’s Guide.” I love to play around with words and in this sentence, I was thinking about a concept where we can’t plan every little thing in the future and at the same time how we can only learn from whatever happens today.