INTRO BY KAT VISTI
INTERVIEW BY CAMI LIBERTY
No matter how many different styles Kris Angelis played around with in her music, she always would go back to her roots and who she is, a storyteller. Her latest single Photobooth displays her storytelling because you get some of her real life moments with a melody behind it that listeners will fall in love with. Her songwriting has earned her numerous awards such as the 13th International Acoustic Music Award for Best Female Artist, LA Music Critics Award for Best Female EP, and she was named a finalist at the 2016 International Songwriting Competition. We sat down with Kris to get the deets about her songwriting process, her single Photobooth, and what's next in store for her.
When was the moment that you realized you wanted to be a musician?
KRIS: "There were two moments. The first was when I discovered Hanson and loved their positive sound with meaningful songs and harmonies and that they played their own instruments. The fact that they were so young made me think that I could do that too and I started learning to harmonize with my twin sister. The follow up moment to that was when I saw Brandi Carlile coincidentally (or not…) opening for Hanson and was so drawn in and moved by her raw emotional voice and songs. I really connected to that and immediately finally picked up a guitar and started writing my own songs again with the intention to play them for people."
How would you describe your music for those who have not heard it yet?
KRIS: "My music is folk/pop. It has elements of both with some story telling, melodic influences from both genres and a foundation of organic, acoustic instruments with some electronic flavoring."
Who are some of your musical influences?
KRIS: "I’m sure I’ll forget some but Ingrid Michaelson, The Head and the Heart, Brandi Carlile, Gregory Alan Isakov, Taylor Swift, The Lumineers, Ray Lamontagne, Regina Spektor, Jeff Hahn, Racheal Yamagata, Katie Herzig, Rachel Platten, Elton John. There are more."
You recently released your single “Photobooth”. Can you tell us a little about the song and the inspiration behind it?
KRIS: "I wrote Photobooth about those things in life that we thought were going to go one way and they ended up another way and the sometimes bittersweet nostalgia of looking back on those moments. It’s based on a real specific experience I had one night at a party with a guy and I thought it would finally be the beginning of a real relationship and it turned out to be the end but the night was wonderful and the joy and hope and laughter that we captured in the photobooth was real but those photos are all that is left. I’ve always thought photo booths were romantic because they’re old-fashioned and spontaneous and I thought it would be a fun thing to write about and a way to release those memories without letting them be tainted."
Do you find that you always have the same process when creating songs or does it change often?
KRIS: "I have a process that is generally the same for a lot of my songs but of course every one is different in the details. I usually have something running around in my head and heart and I’ll write down my thoughts about it and snippets of lyric ideas as I go about my day and then I’ll sit down at some point with a guitar and form those into a song. Sometimes it takes an hour, sometimes it takes years! I also enjoy co-writing which usually is a faster process because there is more than one creative mind working on it and it’s fun to get the different ideas, viewpoints, melodies, and chords that we can bounce off each other and come up with something cool that we wouldn’t have separately. Usually for co-writes, I come in the room with an idea of something I want to write like I do when I’m alone (often just a title or one line that ends up being a hook) or sometimes we’ll just say “what do you feel like writing about” or we have some sort of prompt and I can still scroll through the epic Note on my phone for tidbits that would fit in that feeling or concept."
Is there anything else we can expect from you in the near future?
KRIS: "Yes! Photobooth was the first single from an EP that I’m finishing up and will be coming out in August. The music video for it was just released that my sister directed and has some fun effects in it. I also put out another single this month called Stained Glass.
I’m touring all over Germany in September and then the US in the Fall.
Anyone who’s interested in the EP can pre-order it along with some cool packages including one-of-a-kind vinyl singles that I’ll be recording live in a studio in NYC this week! The pre-orders will help me finish, promote, and get it to radio! https://krisangelis.bandzoogle.com/album-fund-pre-order-now
I’m also on Patreon which allows people to support an independent musician on a consistent basis while getting access to exclusive and early content, private chats, and fun stuff.
All my socials, Spotify, Bandcamp, etc can be found at http://www.krisangelis.com