KadyRoxz is a Soulful Pop artist from Memphis, TN. A mentee of legendary Memphis writers, David Porter (Hold On I’m Coming, Soul Man) and Rick Carnes (Long Neck Bottle, I Can’t Even Get the Blues) and a product of Memphis’ High School of Performing Arts, Overton, newcomer, KadyRoxz is no stranger to the music industry.
As a child, Kady was quiet and often bullied at school yet she shared a close friendship with her paternal grandmother. In her grandmother’s home she would listen to Stax and Motown records and a few of her father’s favorites such as The Eagles and Bob Marley. This set the stage for her diverse and eclectic music taste.
After the passing of her grandmother in the 6th grade, Kady shut out the world and fell into a deep depression. It was not until her mother and father gifted her with her first guitar that she began to learn to communicate with the world again. This basic drive to communicate with song where words have failed has driven her musical journey from the Memphis High School of Performing Arts to Berklee College of Music to her 2017 European Tour.
In this interview spotlight, I chat with KadyRockz about motivations, challenges, her newest project and more.
Full Q&A along with links and music below.
Where are you from and what style of music do you create?
I was born and raised in Memphis, TN. I moved to Nashville at age 17 to pursue my bachelor’s degree at MTSU and a music career. I’m always fairly tempted to call my sound alternative as I never feel like I fall quite “here” or “there”. There’s definitely some soul influences, some folk influences, and some pop. I’ve been called everything from Soulful Country to Electronic R&B. But I feel like Alternative or Indie Pop feels more true to my eclectic sound and influences. Call it what you want as long as it Roxz your world.
What led you down this path of music and what motivates you to keep going?
Music was the only thing that I could grip on to in this world growing up. I was very heavily taunted and bullied as a child and a bit emotionally neglected, to be honest, dubbed sensitive and strange. I didn’t really have a way of dealing with all of those negative emotions and I was deeply depressed most of my childhood and adolescence. Reading and music became huge escapes for me. I survived most of those negative experiences through disassociation and music and writing was my space for that. My records and my books were my home and eventually, I started to create within that realm for myself. I wanted to add to the conversations there as well. And one day, one of my high school teachers convinced me to tell these stories and truths on stage and I became pretty addicted to it. A large part of what keeps me going is knowing that by adding to this realm and space of music and art I’m fortifying this safe space it creates. I want to continue to save myself, I want to begin to reach others. I want to keep crafting this waking dream. And as far as sharing it with the world, I’m just getting started.
How is this new release different than previous ones? Were you trying to accomplish anything specific?
So this year was the first year that I ever made any kind of a commercial release. I’ve been doing live performances for the last few years just trying to gauge what my voice was. I always knew that when I finally made an artistic debut I wanted it to be pretty meaningful and thematic and that’s that the Coloured EP Vol 1 is or will be. The 1st single came out in Septemeber and it was a lot of fun and “artificially sweet” and played on the concept of being addicted to bittersweet love affairs and this second single is a bit like saying goodbye to that type of thing. The first single was all Pink and this one is Blue, but it’s not sad. It’s an acceptance of this is what needed to happen, mistakes and all. There’s even a line that goes, “I can’t apologize for blunders, I needed to lose.”. This concept that even if we failed at love and it was all my fault or all your fault, this is still what I needed all along. And the rest of the songs – coming soon 2018 – are all about self-discovery and growth and how losing what you thought you wanted can force you to be more introspective. I just want to share my journey… I want to make art out of all my trauma… and I’ve had a lot over the last 3 years and its purpose in my life is finally making sense.
Name one or two challenges you face as an indie musician in this oversaturated, digital music age? How has technology helped you (since we know it does help)?
I’d say working as an indie musician in America is particularly hard because I think the oversaturation has made entities value performers less. If you book a gig, it’s your honor and you oughta be grateful that anyone would let you play for exposure tips or one beer split 3 ways. In Europe it was something of an advantage because you were free to book anywhere you wanted with no contracts or the like and most countries there especially, Spain, are all about paying for entertainment, no matter what level you’re at. The only time I wasn’t compensated for a show the promoter covered ALL of my travel expenses, ALL of my hotel costs, and meals and it was really wonderful. Technology has been incredible because it’s helped me cultivate a following without really having any releases over the last few years. It’s landed me some opportunities with shows like the Voice, major producers and publishers and more, and I’m able to still connect with my fans regardless of what country I’m currently touring.
Where is the best place to connect with you online and discover more music?
I’m something of an Instagram addict so I’m always posting little tidbits or artwork there, but I do most of my music promotion on Facebook and Twitter. So please Facebook me, it’s my favorite place to check out fan photos from shows or screenshots (for Sept release a bunch of fans screenshotted their downloads and streams for me to see and my heart almost gave out it was so beautiful).
Anything else before we sign off?
Stay tuned, it’s only going to get awesome from here. A lot is happening with the official EP release next year from secret shows, giveaways, and radio tours. I’m incredibly humbled by all the entities involved in the planning and dedicated to making the Coloured project a full experience.