Natalia Kills is the newest English pop princess to burst onto the scene. She has regularly been performing in Chicago as such venues as the Metro, Allstate Theatre and Roscoe's Tavern on her own as well as supporting such acts as Ke$ha, Robyn and Katy Perry.
Her first full-length album, Perfectionist, has just been released and she talked with Windy City Times about it.
Windy City Times: Hey, Natalia. It was great meeting you face to face at the Borderline Music signing the other day.
Natalia Kills: Thank you, I loved it. There is nothing quite like meeting people face to face that relate to your music. It makes it all make more sense.
WCT: Record stores don't do signings like that anymore.
NK: Record stores don't look like that or function like that anymore. If other record stores looked like earthy mom and pop record stores like that one then people would remember how special music really is.
WCT: You have been living in the United States for a little while now. You are from England, correct?
NK: I am English. I have actually only been living here for about two and half years now. I am moving to New York in about five weeks from now. I am excited because I miss home so much and there is nowhere quite like Europe. America is definitely a different country even though the language is the same. I feel like if I move to New York I will feel like a Londoner again even though I am not in London.
WCT: I heard you mention the other day that you used to be a waitress.
NK: Yes, I have had a few odd jobs. I did some interior designing. I used to teach drama.
WCT: You wrote "Free" during that time.
NK: I did. I started writing it way before but that is where I finished it. That is when I wrote the chorus. I started writing it when I was about 18.
WCT: How did Will.i.Am become connected with it?
NK: I had made a demo that was like "Free" called "Shopaholic." That was when I first started writing the ideas for free. I put a bit of it on MySpace. I had written for soundtracks for movies and television shows as well. Perez Hilton had blogged about me and suddenly I had 2 million plays and was number one on the MySpace unsigned charts. I thought, "Fuck it. I am just going to take a risk."
I quit my job without even telling them and got on a plane. I went to Hollywood and where I knew Perez would be. I met many producers who wanted to sign me. I had meetings with record labels and flown all over the U.S. from Miami to Atlanta. Will was one of them and I got the most genuine vibe from. He never talked about money or sales or number ones. He talked about music and messages, having fun and being yourself. When people told me I would sell millions I always thought that is not why I make music.
WCT: Perez has a whole music component to his blog.
NK: I like how Perez supports artists and will still say it if he doesn't like a song. He will say if they have done something that is total garbage. He's not a schmoozer. He won't tell someone they are amazing when they are not. People get him wrong sometimes but his opinion is genuine. Either he likes it or not whether he is friends with you or not.
WCT: What is your song "Acid Annie" about?
NK: I wrote that song to my former self. I have never said that out loud and I feel a bit weird. It is to who I used to bethe 17-year-old me crying on the kitchen floor sneaking and trying to find text messages on my boyfriend's phone. I was trying to find out if I was going mad like he said I was or I was right and he was doing all of these horrible things. I wrote it to myself to get up off the kitchen floor and stop being a fucking psycho! To get it out of my system and start living life again, stop being affected by someone else in your life.
WCT: We have all had that moment of going through our boyfriend's personal things to prove a point.
NK: Yes but it is so ridiculous, though. I go through it and find something every time! It baffles me because I was either extremely stupid or now I am extremely smarter for having been through it. I can't figure out which one it is, whether it is stupidity or naivety. I would always find something like a letter or a napkin with someone's name on it. It is so fucking stupid. I can't believe how I was. People used to call me a Bitter Betty. I would say, "This is not bitterness; I am not a fucking lemon. It is more than bitter. It's acid." Acid destroys things bitter is just sour. So I wrote to myself "Acid Annie, don't be bitter for the rest of your life."
WCT: It is your own saying. I have never heard it before.
NK: No, I never heard it either. I don't even know where it came from, to be honest. Sometimes I have these little ideas and they make no sense but when made into the full the idea suddenly it does. It is so weird how the brain works.
WCT: You wrote a song called "Heaven" for your grandfather.
NK: Yes. It is produced by Kanye's producer Jeff Bhasker. He did Beyonce's 4 album. He did the Jay-Z/Kanye album. Watch the Throne. He did most of my album. He is my main producer.
WCT: I have seen you open for Robyn two times and Katy this time. When are you doing your own thing?
NK: I start [soon] with my own headline tour in Germany. It is smaller venues. I think the capacity is between 500 and 1,000. They will be small intimate gigs. I am very excited for that. I am going to Austria and Poland. I will be in the U.K. and then back to the U.S. I actually really love opening for people because it is nice that people are expecting to see one show but they get a nice surprise with something beforehand. I really like it, especially Katy's crowd. I had a lot of fun opening for Bruno Mars and Ke$ha as well over the past six weeks. I have been tour-hopping!
Follow her @nataliakills on Twitter and on her website, www.nataliakills.com/splash.