Alex Kelly has just released her new album Orange Circle that mixes a bit of pop, rock and dance to make a great summer record.
- What’s the story behind you Alex Kelly?
Well, I was born and then a bunch of stuff happened and now I’m here. It’s pretty rad here, wherever 'here' is?
- If I twisted your arm and you agreed to pigeon hole yourselves to one genre, which one would it be?
- If you had to choose one element of your music that defines your music as a whole, what would it be and why?
One element? FIRE! Haha. Ok, seriously though, I’d have to say that no matter what we do, we always keep it funky.
Whenever I’m putting a piece together, I like to first establish a groove that makes me want to move my body.
- What made you get into music?
Did it tell you that? Because, in all honesty it got into me first, I swear. I can’t remember a time when I wasn’t sing. I think if the love of music is something that is truly inside of your heart, it’s what you do naturally.
When I was little, I used to imitate everyone I’d hear on the radio. In the 80’s I feel like there was more diversity on the radio, which made imitating fun.
I could listen to Aerosmith, George Michael, Salt n’Peppa, and Anita Baker on damn near the same channel depending on the time of day.
One of my earliest memories is of seeing a Tina Turner performance on television and thinking 'Omg, I want to be this woman!'
- What’s the story behind ‘Orange Circle’ the album?
I’m going to tell you a very short version of a story that played out over what felt like a very long time. One day I started seeing the number 11 a lot!
It was actually quite frightening at first, no thanks to my friends who were all 'O.k. sweetie, why don’t you lie down'. Anyhow, this repeating 1 pattern just kept showing up. Being the curious person I am, I started down a road of research that really got my creative juices going.
I read all kinds of interesting books and bits of writings, from both ancient and modern texts based on the number one. This story is already headed for nerd-city isn’t it? It gets better I promise.
So, mostly I based the record on concepts from one book in particular called 'The Law of One'. I’m not suggesting that anyone read this book; it’s pretty far out there. In the book, an entity that calls itself 'Ra, the humble messengers of the Law of One' is channeled by a woman named Carla Rueckert (I told you it gets better).
The main point the book makes is that mankind must learn to love one another. That thought is so beautiful to me. The title of the album is a reference to Ra.
The single 'Orange circle' is about the joy of being or the joy of existence. Each song expresses a separate concept, and no two songs sound the same. It’s going to be a lot of fun to see how people respond to the music, especially a song called Splendor Solis.
Over the course of making the album, all kinds of strange events took place, some of which one day I’ll talk about one day, but not in this interview. Listen to the album.
- What sort of reaction have you been getting since it was released?
It just came out. So far, so good.
- You’ve got a launch party coming up, what can we expect from it?
Well, Kelsey and I will be there, and now we have Howard Alper (drummer) and DJ Tiger, plus I’m pumped about sharing this music. It came from our brains!
The night of the show I’ll be smiling from ear to ear. It’s always a good time. You can expect to be rocked!
- Who’s your favorite up and coming artist out there at the moment?
I don’t know if up and coming is the right phrase, but I like Gary Clarke Jr. I was meeting a friend at the Highline Ballroom and he was playing. I was slightly mesmerized.
- Who’s your ultimate icon and how have they influenced you?
Purple Rain was my first record. It probably belonged to my older cousins or something, but I slept with that thing (ha-ha).
Let’s Go Crazy was so addicting. Only Prince can start off a song with an incantation! I’m not a guitar player, but all I needed to know about how a guitar should sound, I heard come out of him.
I loved watching his performances. His music was very lively and sexy. I always tell Kelsey 'If it’s not sexy, where not doing it!' So enough said.
- Are you playing any festivals this year?
Not yet, but we would love to. After everything calms down a bit, for sure. Don’t let that stop you from contacting us though (that means you Burning Man?).
- What was your first ever gig like?
My first official gig is not what you’d expect. I was singing in the young adult choir at St. Paul’s Community Church in Riverhead NY.
My family moved to Riverhead when I was about 13 years old. I think I was 14 at the time of the gig. About 20 adults and at least 20 teenagers piled into a small bus that had the church’s name on the side of it.
We were to sing at Rikers Island prison in New York City for a few hundred inmates. I remember stepping out front to do a solo and feeling like peeing my pants. It was terrifying at first, but I managed to eek out a note or too. Talk about paying your dues!
- Is there anyone out there you would love to work with? Musician, Director, Designer?
Musician: Gwen Stefani
Director: Spike Jones
Designer: Morgan Love (My girl)