It shouldn’t come as any surprise to learn that we just love Katy Perry. She’s a great musician, is super cute, has a fabulous fashion sense, and wrote a song we’ve not been able to stop singing, what’s not to love?! I recently got the chance to ask Katy some questions, and got some very funny and insightful answers back. Check it out:
Jessica, PopWreckoning: Hi Katy! I hope you’re doing well! Everyone at PopWreck(oning)loves what we’ve heard from you and it’s been difficult trying to get “Ur So Gay” out of our heads.
Katy Perry: Thanks so much!
PW: You’ve been hailed as the United States’ answer to Lily Allen — how do you feel about the comparison?
KP: As a new artist you’re always gonna be compared to someone because you are just establishing your sound… so I don’t mind so much. The Lily thing probably stems from the fact that we both have black hair, got our bangs cut and have big eyes… I’m sure it’s hard to get past that. Ha. I think we are alike in the way that we both speak our mind in our lyrics and are young females… but we’re different cause I play and sing… and my vocals are way different, plus I’m rock and roll… she’s got her own lane, hopefully I’ll have my own lane too.
PW: Who have been your musical influences and when did you begin writing and playing?
KP: I’ve been influenced by many different artists and songwriters. I regularly mention that Queen is one of my most influential bands to me… but also there’s these female singer song writers like Jonatha Brook and Patty Griffin and even Allison Krauss and Joni Mitchell are my influences. I like the very popular 90’s female fronted bands like The Cranberries and old Garbage. Oh yeah and Fiona Apple and Alanis [Morrisette].
PW: All amazing musicians, for sure. Your debut album will be released mid-June — what went into making the album and do you think you achieved what you set out to do with it?
KP: This record was WORK in progress for sure. 4-5 years in the making and every year I thought and was even promised it would come out. Imagine the kind of tough skin you have to grow after continual let down. I am very happy and VERY proud of it now though… cause looking back at it… I’m glad I didn’t put out a record when I was 17. My ideas and thoughts and opinions have changed so much… I had the opportunity to GROW outside of the spotlight and be comfortable with who I am and all my flaws.
This album is full of stories… its like a dear diary for sure. There’s no confusion and many plays on words and puns and jokes, too. I am a BIG lyric person and want to communicate with people… I don’t care if they laugh, cry, hate or love… just FEEL something in music again.
PW: I totally hear that. I’m a big lyric person, too and I definitely think your music is going to make people take notice and feel. Pop legend Madonna has said she’s a fan of yours — what was your reaction when you found out about that?
KP: Um… I was floored. I totally did a Wayne’s World, “I’m not worthy!” move after I heard. It’s like being blessed by the music pope!
It was like “OMG… you validated my existence, thank you!”
PW: Ha ha, absolutely! It doesn’t get much better than Madonna pimpin’ your tunes. “Ur So Gay” is probably the catchiest song in the history of music — and it’s no secret that it was written about an ex-boyfriend — the video was very well done and matched the song perfectly. Who came up with the concept for the video and are you happy with the outcome?
KP: Oh, well thank you! I am very happy with the outcome of our little low budget video. I was on iChat with my director friend, Walter May, one night and I was about to pull the move of… “Okay, I am going pay for my own do-it-yourself music video for this song.” I woke up the next morning to hear that a very, very, very small amount of money had been found to do this project. Walter and I were going back and forth on ideas and there were treatments submitted from outsiders… but nothing shouted, “This is perfect for MySpace & YouTube.” Something people that are on the internet (aren’t we all now?) will get all the references in this song. So I told Walter I really wanna do something with dolls! And POP! I remembered as a child… playing with the Ken doll and taking his clothes of and noticing a malfunction (obvi) in the private parts area with him. I realized this is perfect for my video… and can I do this? ha.
PW: You’ll be playing Warped Tour all summer long — how are you preparing and what are you expecting, as it’s generally dominated by male musicians?
KP: I am happy to be one of the only girls on this male tour… I stick out like a sore thumb and people wanna see why, I hope. It’s one of the reasons I am calling the record “One Of The Boys.” I think I can keep up with them, play and sing as hard and as well as them… and for sure drink them under a table. Ha. No, actually I have had to give up alot of my vices knowing this tour is gonna be physically exhausting. I am trying to work out more and have traded in all drugs for vitamins B and C and fish oil. I hope the fall will be… a little more… pampered… knock on wood. I know I will have to take a vocal break after 45 shows. Please pray for me. ha.
PW: Absolutely, we wouldn’t want anything to happen to that voice! And we wanna see you in a more intimate setting someday. When can we expect to see you on the road in actual venues and not in the sweltering Warped Tour heat?
KP: Hopefully in the fall we will put together something very me and exciting! I know next year I wanna try new things, too, like an acoustic club tour and a HUGE production tour… I wanna do EVERYTHING and it’s all new so it is very exciting.
PW: If you could put together your dream tour, whether you opened or headlined, who would you want to be on the road with?
KP: I would love to do an updated version of the Lillith Fair. More pop than acoustic and have it be a lot of the cool diva bitches that are up and coming and versatile and then a legend… I would do the following line up:
I think we all bring something different but I think we can all keep peoples’ attentions.
We could call it… “Don’t Fuck With Us Tour” [smiles]
PW: What does the rest of 2008 look like for you, following the end of Warped?
KP: Nothing is for certain yet, I can’t wait though… I am sending out good vibes and hoping I will get them right back at me. I always want to surprise people and try and live up to my idols like Freddie Mercury and his stage presence, his participation with the audience… and not caring what people thought.
PW: What bands/musicians are you listening to these days?
Well I just bought the whole Robyn record and it’s SO RAD. Her lyrics are insane and they resonate with me, every one of them. It’s a type of record I would want to write. Fun, personal and makes people feel.
I also like The Ting Tings, Leona Lewis, Sia, Bat For Lashes, Damien Rice, Jeff Buckley & The Beach Boys to name a few. I love music, especially GOOD music!
PW: Thanks again so much for answering our questions. We can’t wait for the record and we know you’re gonna be huge. Good luck with everything, we’ll see you at Warped!