|ROCKWIRED INTERVIEWS KAITLYN ANDERSON
KAITLYN ANDERSON TALKS TO ROCKWIRED
HER DEBUT E.P. ' A NEW WORD FOR
DOING WHAT MAKES HER HAPPY
BY BRIAN LUSH
KAITLYN ANDERSON has
released her debut
E.P. 'A NEW WORD FOR OVER' in a pop music environment where it's
princesses are voted in by the American public. In recent years,
despite protests by AMERICAN IDOL's resident curmudgeon, young women
are entering the pop stratosphere with the sole intention of rocking
out. This is KAITLYN ANDERSON's intention as well. Sure, comparisons
to KELLY CLARKSON, CARRIE UNDERWOOD, and MANDY MOORE are inevitable,
but ANDERSON's sound echoes the sentiments of rock's female veterans
PAT BENATAR and 80's-era HEART. Her debut E.P. is all sweetness and
slick power chords; a winning combination for any girl that wants to
rock. Packed with earnest pop rock compositions such as the breezy
UNHAPPY, the frantic and insistent PRESSURE and the pleading 'I DON'T
KNOW HOW', - 'A NEW WORD FOR OVER' is only the beginning for KAITLYN.
However, nowhere on this CD does ANDERSON's pop smarts and guitarist
GUILLERMO GUERRERO's dexterity come together as flawlessly as they do
on the track WALK AWAY; a thin slice of power-ballad heaven that will
have those who are old enough recalling a time where the idea
voting for a pop star seemed ridiculous.
spoke with KAITLYN ANDERSON over the phone. Here is how it
What's all going through you head now that this E.P.
is out there for everybody to hear. How do you feel about it?
feel excited but so nervous because it's brand new and there is so
much out there and I just hope that enough people get excited about
It's an E.P. and not a full length album. Is there an
album on the way?
Right now, since this is kind of
independently funded by my father, we are are pushing this E.P. to
get some sort of recognition and hopefully if someone believes in us
enough to help financially, I would love to make a full length album.
Obviously, you've got a lot of family support with this
endeavor. For most people that I interview that is most definitely
not the case.
To be honest with you, I almost gave up on my
dreams a while ago and my parents were like "listen, whatever we
have to do to help you, we'll do it." so, I'm one of the lucky
What was making you want to give up?
into relationship with somebody who wasn't as supportive as my family
and wanted me to get a real job so I could start helping pay for
life. That kind of disheartened me and so I kind of stopped for a
while but then I realized that you've got to do what makes you happy,
whether you make six figures or not even close. Life is just way to
short and you've got o be happy.
What drew you to music in
My mom must've listened to a lot of music when
I was in her belly because I came out dancing before I started
walking and started humming before I even spoke a word. So then,
immediately, my mom had me taking piano lessons and voice lessons and
I kept them up through high school and kind of stopped in college
only to start again and I haven't quit since.
So are you
No. My dad is a banker, so he's moved around
quite a bit but I was born in Houston, Texas and I've lived all over
Southern California and all over Arizona and now I'm staying put for
And in the beginning, what sort of music spoke to
I used to listen to a lot of AMY GRANT because we're a
real Christian family, so that was great. She's very emotional and
powerful, and I also like BETTE MIDLER because of her theatrics. But
I have to say that I love THE BEACH BOYS because they were all about
catchy melodies and harmonies. I love them.
And you moved
to the right state for that.
With this current
E.P., who all did you work with. On your MYSPACE page, I noticed two
musicians with you. Who are they and tell me about them.
have GUILLERMO GUERRERO who is my guitar player. He's currently on
tour overseas with another group but he co-wrote the songs with me.
He did the music and I did the lyrics and the melodies, so he played
a big role in a number of the songs. He's fantastic! He's originally
from Spain and I got him from the MUSICIAN'S INSTITUTE and he's now a
working musician. I also have a drummer named ERIC KAMBESTAD. He's
from the MUSICIAN'S INSITUTE as well and he graduates in September
and he kind of completed the songs with his drum beats.
this E.P., had you ever had an inkling to write songs or is this
something that has come along with releasing the E.P.
I was just kind of singing for fun because I didn't know how much
support I would actually have but I've always written songs. I have a
journal full of lyrics that dates back to junior high with, I'll be
completely honest, terrible lyrics, but at least I got them out
somehow, I guess. It helps to hone what it is that you write later on
in your life. So I always wanted to write music.
terms of writing, who inspires you. What catches your ear and makes
you think 'I can do this'?
I love COUNTING CROWS because
everything is so poetic and beautiful but the FOO FIGHTERS
such a rock group and their songs are so incredible. They change so
much from one song to another. As far as women are concerned, it's
got to be catchy, so i love KELLY CLARKSON and CARRIE UNDERWOOD and
back in the day I loved HEART and PAT BENATAR. Those are the kind of
people that get me excited to sing everyday.
HEART and PAT
BENATAR can get anyone excited.
I love them. PAT BENATAR's
voice gives me chills every time I hear it.
Your song 'WALK
AWAY' totally reminds me of HEART in the eighties when they went
through their power-ballad period.
That's such a
When I first visited your MYSPACE page, that
was the first song I heard.
It's actually one of my
Other than that song are there any other tracks
on the E.P. that stand out for you at the moment?
WALK AWAY is
the closest one to my heart. i wrote it in a very sticky situation in
my life. It helped me work through my issues. The single, UNHAPPY is
the story of what happened in my last relationship. I realized that I
was just sticking around because I didn't want to hurt his feelings
but I totally neglected my own. When I had had realized that,
removing myself from the situation was the best thing I could do.
Like I said before, you've got to be happy.
Since we talked
about this earlier, it seems as if there was an absence of women
doing rock music, and then in the past couple of years, there seems
to have been more of it. What do you think about that?
it's very hard for women to be accepted in rock. I don't know why
exactly because there are some great women out there. It just seems
that it's a lot easier for guys for some reason but I'm really
excited that female singer/songwriters in rock and pop are starting
to come back. I really think that someone like KELLY CLARKSON helped
a little bit because her music had a rock edge to it. I think it's
great that women are starting to come on strong again. I think the
band PARAMORE is awesome. Especially their lead singer HAYLEY
In terms of promotion for the E.P., are there any
shows coming up.
We're working on setting up a coastal tour
at the moment. There will also be a couple of shows in Arizona. On
September 11, 2008 we'll be doing a huge show at the KEY CLUB in
Hollywood. It's going to be an art show mixed with music, so it's
going to be really cool.
Explain the creative process to
me. How do go about writing songs?
There are so many different
inspirations for me but the one example I'll give you an example. For
the song PRESSURE, GUILLERMO thought of this really cool riff and we
decided that we should make this a song. He allowed me to take the
music and listened to it over and over and was thinking about how the
music made me feel. It just so happened that we were under a lot of
pressure because that was the last song that we recorded for the
album, so we wrote a song about feeling under pressure and how the
music affected me. Usually, I write the lyrics first and have
help from an actual musician. While can put out a melody line on a
piano but I can't actually put it all to music.
you like a person to come away with after they've heard the album?
really want them to have fun and like it. That what music is all
about. It's about making you feel something. For me, I think the
songs are about empowerment for young women but I think guys could
definitely like it too. I don't think it's specifically aimed towards
girls. I'd like people to walk away thinking 'I wanna hear more from
And this is just an E.P. I can't wait for a
full length album.
I can't wait either.
Do you have
any other material that you are working on at the moment?
I'm working on three songs right now and then I have one that we
didn't get to put on the E.P. My life has changed a lot since the bad
relationship and now I'm in a good one. In the future , there is
going to be a mix of angry chick rock to the softer singer-songwriter
and maybe even a little bit of country, because I am from Texas after
all. When we make the full length album, there are going to be a lot
of different styles to it. So I'm really excited.