Published on March 29th, 2020 | by MuzikScribe0
Kandace Springs: Classic Sounds
Your lead single/performance video is “Pearls,” a Sade staple — Tell me about this particular track; how did it even come to fruition?
I’ve always been a huge fan of Sade. She has the most amazing tone in her voice. When I first heard “Pearls,” it literally brought tears to my eyes. It’s so powerful. I started doing it in some of my shows over the last few years and when we came up with the concept for this album, Sade and “Pearls” were a perfect fit!
Of course “Pearls” comes courtesy of your just unleashed covers LP, ‘The Women Who Raised Me’ — Although pretty self-explanatory, still tell me, conceptually, what does that title represent both to and for you?
The album title refers to the incredible female artists that literally taught me to do what I do, and shaped me to be the artist I am today. They are all so iconic and inspiring.
Aside from the obvious, how else does ‘The Women Who Raised Me’ either differ and / or compare to previous Kandace Springs efforts?
I think this album is the most true to who I am, and the music that moves me the most. I’m kind of an old soul, and I love to interpret classic songs.
‘The Women Who Raised Me’ is a Blue Note Records project — What particular strings of events actually led to this union?
I had originally signed to Epic Records years ago and although they gave me a great deal, it just wasn’t the right fit. They allowed me to move on, and I will always be grateful to them for that. Blue Note was the first place we went next, and the president, Don Was, signed me on the spot. Just to be a part of the legacy of the Blue Note label is such an honor.
Reflecting, tell me your whole inception into music — When did you first become interested in it? And, how did it all begin for Kandace Springs?
My dad is a singer and I grew up listening to soul, gospel and jazz playing in the house all the time. I picked up so much just seeing him perform locally in Nashville and hearing him sing at home. He began to notice me messing around on the piano and singing, and eventually, he got me lessons with a guy named Victor Wooten who is amazing…and also got me involved with the Nashville Jazz workshop where I learned so much.
Now you’re from Nashville, Tennessee, correct? So growing up in “Music City,” who all did/do you consider to be your strongest musical influences?
Other than my dad, I listened to a lot of Ella Fitzgerald, Nina Simone, Diana Krall…but I also loved Luther Vandross, Lauryn Hill and, of course, Sade!
At what particular point in time did you even opt to pursue music on a professional level?
I recorded some demos locally as a teenager, but nothing really materialized. When I was about 18, the producers who discovered and signed Rihanna – Evan Rogers and Carl Sturken from SRPMusic – heard about me and flew to Nashville to meet me. It took a few years for me to be ready and become independent, and then we re -connected and I came to New York to write and demo the songs with them that eventually got me signed. They put me in front of all the major labels, and are still my managers to this day.
How do you classify your overall sound and / or style?
I’m hard to put into a box, but my sound is definitely classic jazz…but with touches of gospel and soul. My own little mix all in one pot!
Prince – “voice that can melt snow”
The legendary late, great Prince was not only a huge influence on you but also a personal friend — How did this connection even come about?
Prince actually direct messaged me after he saw a video I had posted of me singing “Stay With Me” by Sam Smith. I will never forget that night. We were all freaking out like, “ is it really him!!??” And it was.
How much actual input/involvement did His Royal Badness have when it came to the overall hands on experience with you and your music?
Prince flew me to Minneapolis several times to experiment in the studio; it was unreal watching him create tracks, playing all the instruments. But we also did things like play checkers, go to the movies – he would shut down the whole theater when he wanted to use it – and we talked about music and life. He always encouraged me to stick to jazz, and be true to who I am. I miss him so much. He was so hilarious when he wanted to be, but also just a great friend. He would call at all hours of the night.
Switching gears here…
What do you want people to get from your music?
My goal is to make timeless music. That’s why I love these songs and artists. They are still totally relevant all these years later.
On a more serious note, are you happy with the current state of music?
I enjoy all kinds of music…from Adele to Billie Eilish to Daniel Caesar and H.E.R.; I think there is room for all kinds of music. As long as it’s soulful, I’m good with it.
Do you have any other outside / additional aspirations, maybe even completely away from entertainment?
I’m a huge car enthusiast! I own a whole bunch of cars; from muscle cars to bad ass jeeps to vintage cars. I take apart the engines, put them back together, detail them, you name it. I love to go off-roading in my Jeep out in the woods and blast my music!
To date, what has been your greatest career achievement(s), at least thus far anyway?
So many great moments so far on my journey; performing with Prince at Paisley Park on the 30th anniversary of Purple Rain, debuting on the David Letterman show, performing at Madison Square Garden in New York City…but on my new album I got to duet on a song and become friends with one of my all time heroes, Norah Jones. That’s my girl! Totally blew my mind.
One track of yours that you think defines you and why?
I think the song “Solitude” on my new album. It’s a jazz classic, but it’s also so soulful. I never get tired of performing that one.
Lastly, what’s next for you, Kandace?
Next for me is touring all over the world to support this album. I’ll be everywhere; from NYC to L.A. and everywhere in between, as well as Japan, London, Paris, Amsterdam, Milan; basically all over the world with my all girl trio. See you out on the road!
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