Kash Kaaria born Mukami Gitonga Kaaria is a singer and fashion blogger.
What got you into writing songs and being in the creative space?
When I started, I never knew I was writing poems as a form of expressing my emotions. I would write when feeling overwhelmed, especially. My mum had instilled the writing culture in me from a young age. I wrote my first song when I was in primary school.
Is that what got you into blogging as well?
Yes, actually. But it was more of a channel for me to explore fashion, which I didn’t have the opportunity to do while in school. The transition from high school to university gave me the time to share my two cents on fashion.
It’s not as active anymore because music has been taking so much of my energy. But I know I’ll fuse both loves in the near future, seeing as I am my own stylist. I’m still trying to figure that out.
How would you describe your music?
It’s a fusion of Afro beat, pop, rock and hip-hop. I still don’t have a specific genre. (Laughs). I’m still figuring that out.
Is this your debut EP?
Yes, it is.
What inspired the name ‘Strings Attached’?
It actually comes from some experiences I went through while trying to record the EP. Although nothing bad happened, it was more of a challenge that female artistes face from time when it comes to male producers or sound engineers. They would want to get too involved in one’s project or involved with an artiste, and if they are turned down, things end up being not so rosy.
Could you tell us about the production process?
Wow, the production was a one-of-a-kind experience. I feel like every song has its own identity and could stand on its own, telling a story different from the others. And this is all thanks to the amazing talent that is Mutoriah. He is such a gifted individual and working with him I feel made me a better all-rounded artist.
Which of the songs on it would you say is the best, and why?
(Laughs). It’s really hard to pick a single song but if I had to, I’d say ‘There’. Stylistically, the song almost plays to a younger me. I loved rock so much that I had a band in high school called The Towels. So, I decided to add a little rock element to ‘There’ in the process of recording it. When it turned out the way it did, I smiled thinking of how much the younger me would be proud.
Who would you like to collaborate with in the near future?
I like to mix with artistes with whom we’re musically different. This is evident in my collaboration with Maandy in the song ‘Solo’. For future collaborations, I’d say Femi One, Nyashinski and Bien. The Mount Rushmore of Kenyan artists.
Who would you say influenced your music career?
Well, I’ve had a lot of influences with music. The sounds of Gaga, Prince, Linkin Park, Michael Jackson, Yemi Alade, and Asa have all played a major part into me being who I am as an artist. But I’d say that Beyonce is the one person I emulate the most. To me, she’s just complete as an artist and that’s what I am for.
What would you like to be remembered for as a musician?
Inspiring a whole generation of artists to know that they can follow their dreams and be successful while doing it.
Do you write your own songs? If so, what inspires you?
Yes, I do. It’s because I have a lot of stories to tell. Honestly, my inspiration comes from life experiences that I try to portray in a way that listeners can relate to.
Do you think you can get better as a musician? How so?
I do think there’s always room for improvement that in every aspect of life. As an artist, I always aim to be better than what I am. For example, stylistically, I’ve changed a lot from the first number of singles that I put out. In the future projects, I’m sure that there will be things that I’ll do that will sound different from what we hear now.
Where would you say you want to be in the next five years?
Professionally, I’d want to be a household and international name. I want to export my talents beyond Kenya, beyond Africa and work with people from different parts of the world. As far as personal goals go, I want to be a serial business person, á la Rihanna.
What motivates you?
My motivation comes from life. I always want to do better and be better, whether by being a better singer, pianist, or friend. My motivation also comes from wanting to achieve all my goals so that the 5-year-old Kash could smile when she saw me.