We’re about two months into lock-down, live shows have been cancelled, many artists can’t record from home and because of social distancing have not been in the studio to record. Longtime #WomenCrush Music ambassador aka Portland’s Queen of Pop, Kingsley - is not letting that stop her from showing off what she’s been working on. In this Q & A celebrating the release of her newest single, “I’m Fine”, learn about she shifted her mindset & put the needs of her followers first, in order to keep momentum and show appreciation to her supporters.
Can you tell us a little more about your newest project, Crying on Holidays?
Crying On Holidays will be a 15 track album releasing SOME TIME either in fall or early Jan 2021 (depending on when I can get in the studio to finish tracking my vocals). This project is everything you feel during the holiday season in a relationship. The good, the bad, and the ugly crier. I worked strictly with Portland producers on this one, and I am very excited to showcase the pop talent PDX has to offer.
What was the original timeline/plan for the release and how did COVID-19 affect it?
Everything has been to shits for this project. I got fully funded in Feb via Kickstarter (shout of to the 105 donors, love ya’ll) and went into pre-production/demoing out 20 at the start of March with a plan to pick the top 15 and do final vocal tracking in April. And so now, I have the 15 songs I want but I am unable to get in the studio to track.
What are you doing to keep your followers & supporters engaged since you won’t be able to release on time?
Honestly, the first 5 weeks I went into a hibernation mood, I stayed TF off social media for my sanity. It’s hard seeing people release things when you LITERALLY CANNOT! I worked on my mediation practice and read the self-help books I’ve been meaning to read but never had time. After that, I chatted with a few folks about if I should or shouldn’t go live and how to keep my fans engaged for the time being. It all came down to the same things, which I also do, put out meaningful content. Don’t just go live to go live.
What made you think of releasing the songs as demos and recording videos along with it?
This cool idea came from chopping it up with my bestie - releasing the raw version of songs is something special and something folks aren’t doing. I remember listening to Beyonce’s demo version of ‘Sorry’ and I was like ‘damn, there are sooooo many different elements added to it but hearing the skeleton version just brings you closer to the artist.’ It gives you a deep scope of how they create. For my fans, hearing the song as a demo allows them to experience the song in so many different ways they would have never gotten the chance to if I just released the final product.
What is the name of the video you are releasing today and what is the story behind the song?
Today I am releasing ‘I’m Fine’ which will be the first single I release prior to the entire album. This one was produced by my band-mate Jack Mortensen, it has a Chicago house style with a jazzy vocal layer on top, I know my dad is shedding a tear of joy just listening to it right now! This song hits home for A LOT of ladies - who hasn’t said ‘I’m fine’?!!? This song is about letting the guy who broke your heart know you are going to be alright, so step out the way and let me find something bigger (wink, wink) and better!!
What do you hope to get out of releasing the demo videos?
Giving my fans content that means something, allowing them to connect with me on a deeper, more intimate level. Showing songs as a demo is something incredibly vulnerable for me. I hate giving out songs when they are the final product, so I hope they love the beginning stages of the songs just as much as I do.
What advice can you give to our #WCM songwriters who might be struggling to find ways to connect with their fans during COVID-19?
Ask yourself what you would need as a fan if the roles were opposite and roll with it. Your fans really reflect and represent you. Be creative, everyone is LIVE, what else can you do?
How can your fans support you right now?
Keep streaming my tunes ya’ll, add them to any Rona playlist that you have! Keep sending me pics of rocking my merch around your crib!
Do you have any live streams coming up?
My first one (finally, some have said) will be on Friday, May 8th on FB/IG on Roseland Theater’s (@roselandpdx) socials. Doing Crying On Holidays (Demo) Live Stream where I am going to chat about the songs and share some funny ass stories. Bring some champagne and come hang with ya girl. xx
Watch “I’m Fine” below and keep up with Kingsley at @yokingsleymus on social media and learn more at https://www.iamkingsley.com/.
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