Q+A: 5 minutes with KID BE KID
Producer KID BE KID is a bit of a rebel. Having outgrown the restrictions that piano sheet music placed on her self-expression, she now taps her inner contrarian to explore unsung subject matter, which we can hear in her new record ‘Naked Times’, out under the Fun In The Church label. But that’s not all.
She is also a beatboxer, singer and Jazz pianist from the capital of Germany. The triple-threat Berliner has poured her abilities into a tongue-in-cheek album titled Truly A Life Goal But No Ice Cream, which fans can expect to lay their hands on on the 9th of June 2023. KID BE KID tells us more:
Set the tone for us. Why the arts?
Life is boring without the arts.
Which comes first when you’re producing – the sound or the idea?
The idea triggers the sound, and the sound triggers the idea. But the composition of a song is more than that. I write poems first, and then I write the music to the message and create a mood with sounds, chords, basslines, beats and, of course, vocals. I think a strong idea mostly comes with meaningful lyrics or a good harmonic or rhythmic idea or hook line. In my single ‘Naked times’, the core of the song was the idea that if we all stood face to face naked, the meaning of our online profiles would evaporate. “plastic surgery, then to gym, pumpin’ up muscles, tryin’ to be thin, Barbie and Ken, truly a dream, truly a lifegoal, but no ice cream.”
Does your material feature any collaborations?
I love collaborations. But I also like albums that are made in one unique way. This speaks more to me. Whenever I listen to albums with a lot of features I am a bit disappointed to not get enough of the artist I wanted to listen to. I think it has a special strength to follow one artistic idea instead of many. So there is only one feature on my album: the guitar playing of Beatdenker on ‘Stories’.
What’s on your current playlist?
Little Simz, Frank Ocean, James Blake, Kaytranada, Flying Lotus, Radiohead, Dorian Concept, Moses Sumney, Mount Kimbie, Jordan Rakei, Solange, Little Dragon.
Tell us about the chemistry you have with your fans on stage.
I feel like me and my fans are having a good time together.
What techniques do you experiment with to get your original sound?
The combination of piano, vocals, beatboxing, and synth played at the same time without any looper makes my sound unique. Also, I invented the “splitvoice” – a vocal technique that produces up to 3 tones at the same time without using effects.
Take us through a day in the recording studio.
I need a long time to get started, as you can hear in the song ‘Start’, but once I am into it, I am unstoppable.
Was there a specific moment in your life where you thought, “this is what I want to do”?
When I played in Paris at the Le Trabendo, the sound was so amazing and the audience so curious that the concert felt as if it was played by itself. Like an ecstasy. Concerts like that are what I want to do. But besides work – having fun with friends. Laughing is one of the most important things for me.
What do you keep close by while you’re playing a set?
Any emerging artists on your radar?
What gets your creative juices flowing?
Having had a good time. Or having had a bad time.
Take us through your collection of gear, tech or software that accompanies your creative expression.
A grand piano, my voice, the Tetr4 Synth from DSI. Probably the SPX404 for my new live set that I am now working on. In the studio, I work with Reaper.
Any side projects you’re working on?
I did a collab with Henrik Schwarz and Bugge Wesseltoft called ‘My first life’. Also, I recorded 7 songs for the Netflix Soundtrack of Rumspringa made by Tim Neuhaus. I currently work on a duo EP with the french-Canadian pianist Simon Denizart. I also started working on an EP with Yael Naim from Paris.
How have you refined your craft since you entered the industry?
Practice, practice, practice, producing, producing, producing, playing, playing, playing… And also the new album has a wider range of moods and more positive vibes. This was my goal and I think I did it.
Break down the news for us: what can we expect from you this year?
My first single ‘Naked Times’ just released and will be followed up by 2 more singles. The album comes out on June 9th 2023. I’ll play internationally. There will be more videos, too. This year is basically supposed to be the biggest year I have ever had. So let’s see!
Famous last words?
Create art instead of “content”!
Watch / listen to KID BE KID‘s latest single below:
KID BE KID Tour Dates 2023
11th March – Kulturetage Halle, Oldenburg, Germany
23rd March – Burghof, Lörrach, Germany
24th March – Les Cuizines, Ville de Chelles (near Paris), France
18th April – Cully Jazz Festival, Cully, Switzerland
12th May – XJAZZ! Festival, Berlin, Germany
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Image credit: KID BE KID