Get To Know: Kim Petras
1) For those who don’t know about you and your music, tell us a little bit about who you are and where you’re from…
Well, I’m from Cologne, Germany, but I’ve been living in Los Angeles for the last six years. I’ve been obsessed with becoming a songwriter since I was twelve or thirteen years old. I originally set out to become the next big pop songwriter, so the first few years of my career were focused on that and putting songwriting first before anything else. I wrote for a bunch of different artists here in LA until I got a publishing deal. I’ve always been in full control of my career, but I put out my first song as an independent artist about a year and a half ago. Ever since then, I’ve been performing in every single club there is and building a fan base.
2) Describe your sound in three words…
Retro. Future. Pop.
3) Who inspired you to start a career in music?
A lot of people! I don’t think I can credit one person in particular, but my biggest idol is Madonna. I adore her. I was inspired by all the amazing pop girls that came before me. I love Cher, Lady Gaga, Katy Perry, Kylie Minogue, Cyndi Lauper, Janet Jackson, Beyoncé, Rihanna… I look up to all of them and I feel like I’ve seen every single show they’ve done a million times over.
4) Who are your biggest musical influences?
Daft Punk, Freddie Mercury, Madonna, Billy Idol, Kanye West… The list goes on. I think Kanye’s 808s & Heartbreak, Madonna’s True Blue, Lana Del Rey’s Born to Die, and Marina and the Diamond’s Electra Heart have inspired me a lot.
5) Tell us about the writing and recording process for your new full-length project Clarity…
It started back in December on the Troye Sivan tour. Everything was going really great, but I had just gone through a breakup. It was tough. Even though I was performing these big, bubblegum, happy songs on stage, I started writing all these sad songs when I came off stage. I feel like my music before Clarity was an extreme, super-confident version of myself. Clarity helped me process what was going on. I felt really lost and didn’t know what to do, but when I got in the studio everything clicked and started to happen really naturally. It’s more stripped back. It’s like hanging out with me for a night. It’s very much me inviting you out, then going back to my place, ending the party early, and drinking wine and talking about boys and emotions. It’s very different from what I started doing, but I’m really proud of it.
6) What can we expect from your live shows?
I don’t want to give too much away, but… I really sing my ass off at my shows. You can definitely expect a party – all of my concerts feel like a party rather than an actual concert. There’s always a lot of energy and my shows are always unapologetically pop.
7) What has been your biggest career highlight so far?
All of it! I can’t pinpoint one particular moment, because they’ve all been so important. I’ve just been building away. The best is still to come, for sure.
8) Have you met anyone and been totally starstruck?
Yes! Madonna. I had no idea what to say to her at all. I just freaked out, but she was really nice and cool. I met her in New York and I’m so obsessed with her. Whenever I’m down, I watch her Truth or Dare documentary and it picks me up. She’s a huge inspiration for me. I think I just fangirled out, thanked her for inviting me, and backed away into the crowd of people. It was lit.
9) What’s on your playlists that people wouldn’t expect?
Peppa Pig! No, I’m kidding. Prodigy records, Travis Scott, some old European techno from the 90s, Alice Cooper… “Poison” is THE song.
10) When can we see you live?
I’ll be performing at Manchester Pride, Reading Festival, and Leeds Festival. I also have a London show coming up on August 27, but it’s sold out. I’ll be back, for sure. I’m constantly touring… and if you plan on coming to America, I’ll be doing something very exciting there soon as well.