As well as a notching up a guest spot on The Internet’s debut LP Purple Naked Ladies, Kish has been busy collaborating with Childish Gambino and Frank Ocean, and working towards her debut LP, Sick Sad World, which is slated for release later this year. Wears The Trousers caught up with Kish to talk about growing up as a misfit in Florida, why image is important, and why she’s okay with all those Cassie comparisons.
Who was your first crush, and did you ever confess?
My first crush was a little blond boy named Ben in kindergarten. I was super shy in elementary school so I didn’t confess.
If you were an answer in a crossword puzzle, what would be your clue?
Girl who talks quietly with big hair.
What’s your middle name?
Kimberly. Lil’ Kim.
Are you lucky or unlucky in love?
I think I’m pretty lucky. Everything flows pretty seamlessly. I’m friends with everyone I’ve dated expect for one, because he was insane. Of course it sucks to break up or feel hurt, but I’ve never been cheated on (as far as I know). That’s a good thing.
What did you listen to when you were growing up? Who did you first see live?
Growing up I was super into the Spice Girls, boybands, Britney, the whole crew. I loved Michael Jackson. I think the first show I ever saw was a gospel thing at the Jersey Shore (but not seaside). My first show I was excited to go to was N*Sync.
If you chanced upon Aladdin’s lamp, what three things would you wish for?
1. Student loans paid
2. Happiness and good fortune for my family and friends
3. Unlimited wishes
How important is image to your music, on a personal level?
I think image is super important, even if your only ‘image’ is not having one at all. Visuals are something that can really alter your perception. I try to be conscious about that. I make all of my own artwork and invites to anything surrounding my music. I like to be as hands-on as I can possibly be. For me to delegate that to someone else is one more degree separated from myself. You should see what you get and get what you see.
What are your biggest obstacles as a musician?
Getting used to hearing it played around me. I never really know what people’s reactions will be and it makes me anxious.
Have you ever had any bizarre comparisons to other musicians? How do you feel about that?
Yeah, all the time. I get compared to M.I.A. and Cassie, and some other people I can’t think of at the moment. It isn’t all that bizarre because Cassie and I kind of do sound alike. They’re compliments. I’m totally fine with it.
What’s your favourite joke or quote?
“Work hard and be nice to people.”
What’s the first material possession you would rescue in a fire?
My art portfolio and diaries.
If you could star in any TV show, past or current, which would it be and what kind of character would you play?
‘The Cosby Show’. I would totally be Denise Huxtable, hands down.
Are you a dog or a cat person?
What would you tell your teenage self if you could go back in time?
I would tell myself not to dilute myself for people. I wasted so much time wishing I was someone different; I wasn’t comfortable in my own being. I didn’t really find that place where I fit for a long time. I wore Abercrombie, they weren’t feeling it so I started wearing Baby Phat. Didn’t work for me, so I went super prep. I was friends with nerds because I had classes with them, and was probably one too. Growing up in central Florida, the only other ‘strange’ people were goths and rednecks. Didn’t fit there. I wasn’t one of the cool black girls. I didn’t use slang or have a southern accent. The Myspace age killed me. I wanted to be that girl with 64,542,958 friends. Only when I got older did I understand how ridiculous all those people were. I’ve grown to understand that you don’t have to be in everyone’s face to be relevant.
What’s the best thing you’ve ever seen on YouTube?
Which women have most inspired you?
My mom gave me a great work ethic.
What makes you angry? Why?
It takes a lot to make me angry but some things that annoy me are disrespect of someone else’s time, lateness and flaking. Also, when people catch attitudes on the train. It’s like, seriously? None of us want to be here. Chill.
Describe your vision of the afterlife.
I’m Christian so I believe in heaven.
Who would be your dream collaboration?
Musically, Juicy J. Fashion, DVF.
Do you have a tattoo?
Yes, I have a feather on my wrist. I want a few more really small textual ones.
Would you rather see a ghost or simply have a piece of toast and watch the evening news?
I’ve seen a ghost before. Wasn’t a great experience. So I’m down for the seven-grain toast with peanut butter please.
How are you most likely to die? What would you want written on your headstone?
I’m clumsy. I can see myself falling off of something. On my headstone it would say ‘Too trill’.
What gives music its worth?
It breaks down barriers, it connects people and evokes feeling and emotion. Which is something very special.
Check out two tracks from the Homeschool EP below.
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