Q&A: 5 Minutes with Camille Rose
We recently caught up with up-and-coming singer-songwriter Camille Rose after the release of her exciting new single ‘Rose Tinted Glasses‘, shared on the 31st of August. Fresh off of performances at iconic venues such as The Viper Room, House of Blues Anaheim, and Hollywood Rose Bowl at Foodieland Festival LA, Camille Rose is back with the perfect breakup song featuring model, producer and singer Christopher Kenji.
Set the tone for us. Why the arts?
I was introduced to the arts at a young age, growing up raised by a Hawaiian mother, I was forced to dance hula and Tahitian dance on stages in front of audiences. Funny enough, I was always the child singing the songs the loudest on stage- when I should’ve been focused on dancing. My parents realized quickly that my passion for singing superseded any other interest in my life. At the age of nine, I started doing vocal lessons with Lynn Asher, who introduced me to Grammy and Emmy award winning producer Narada Michael Walden at just ten years old. By the time I was fourteen, my mom moved to another town specifically so I could attend Marin School of the Arts for high school. Singing and songwriting have always been my form of therapy, emotional release, and escape.Being a type one diabetic since the age of twelve, I dealt with intensive stress that other kids didn’t. When I had no control over my health, singing was my way of regaining control, both vocally and through expressing my experiences in song.
Which comes first when you’re producing – the sound or the idea? What gets
your creative juices flowing?
Ideas normally come to me at random, whether I’m in class or trying to fall asleep, even in the shower. Sometimes songs pop I to my head with a full melody, other times it’s an entire melody and structure concept. I write all of my songs from some degree of personal experience, I feel like that is what makes a song feel more authentic. Most of my songs are about boys that were stupid and did me wrong, so I guess you could say that gets my creativity going!
You collaborated on this track with model Christopher Kenji. How did that come
Christopher is an amazing talented singer and songwriter himself and we met
through an alumni event of our shared high school, Marin School of the Arts. What started as a mentorship between the two of us quickly grew into a full-fledged musical collaboration. Christopher got a sense for my sound and realized I was having trouble clicking with a producer. As a producer of his own music, he offered to produce one of my songs. We clicked instantly and he ended up producing, co-writing, and engineering 8 songs total with me.
Take us through your writing process. Was ‘Rose Tinted Glasses’ inspired by true
At the time I was going through a transitional phase in my life and my relationship with myself and others. I was realizing how tainted our views of other people, particularly our significant others, can be when we project our ideas onto them. I started vocalizing this to Christopher, who could relate through his own perspective. We realized most songs about relationships were either about the “honeymoon phase” where you love someone so much that you have no problems, or the “breakup stage” where you decide the problems aren’t worth fixing. Instead of sticking to the normal formula, we decided to emulate this “middle ground” of a relationship. When you’re in a relationship with someone you love but start to see who they really are, do you choose to leave them or stay? And similarly, how do you cope with your partner seeing your uncovered flaws?
What was it like working with Grammy-winning producer Narada Michael Walden?
Working with Narada from such a young age really opened me up to a world of opportunities. At the young age of ten I was standing in the same studio that Mariah Carey and Whitney Houston once had. The rehearsals with Narada and his team made me grow as an artist very quickly. I learned studio etiquette at the same time as I learned how to set a table. Working and performing alongside greats such as Carlos Santana, Ronnie Spector, Martha Reeves, and more never intimidated me. Rather, it inspired me.
Any emerging artists on your radar?
Of course, Christopher Kenji’s music is amazing. He has a very unique voice that is so well suited for rock, plus all his songs have catchy hooks that will absolutely get stuck in your head. I’ve also recently really been loving Emei, she’s just starting to tour internationally and I absolutely love her lyricism. I would love to open for her one day. A great local artist to LA who I have been loving is Halle Abadi, her middle eastern influences make her pop music really standout in a beautiful way. Finally, a standout lesser known artist in LA that has been doing an amazing job bringing pop punk back is kailey.
We love the rock instrumental on ‘Rose Tinted Glasses’. Is rock one of your main
Initially, my training consisted of R&B, soul, and jazz- since those were the genres Narada liked to dabble in. As I got old enough to choose my own classes in high school, I joined the rock band program. I learned so much from Scott Thunes, who used to be the bassist for Frank Zappa. Scott pushed me to go outside of my comfort zones with covers and nearly forced me to write originals. I loved writing, I loved singing, and I loved having an audience. But it wasn’t until I took my rock band class did I fully feel comfortable combining the three. These past few
singles I’ve really been tapping into my rock inspiration, particularly from Gwen Stefani, my all-time idol. I really love performing rock, there’s something so satisfying about belting and getting gritty with your tone- most other genres don’t have room for that in the way that rock does.
How have you refined your craft since you entered the industry?
I am a firm believer that every day is an opportunity to grow and learn. Every session with Narada was a chance to learn from legendary industry professionals. Every day at my high school was a chance to learn alongside my peers who knew more about music than I did. And now that I am finishing my last year in college, I feel that every day is a chance to learn new vocal techniques, songwriting formulas, music theory, and most importantly- collaborations.
Breakdown the news for us: what can we expect from you this year?
This year has been about a lot of new music and I’m happy to close out the year with my debut EP. Within the coming months, am I collection of some of my favorite songs I’ve ever written, including the first song I ever written will finally be released. In terms of things outside of this project, expect many more shows within California, particularly in Los Angeles and one in San Francisco come late September.
Famous last words?
Before every rehearsal, show, or audition ever since I was young my dad would tell me the same thing. To this day, I still call him before my shows or important meetings and let it carry me through my day. “A.B.C. Always Be Confident” -my dad, Michael Rosenthal
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