Kat chatted with of Complex Magazine about Hip Hop Squares (which I’ve added new BTS shots from), her music and Perez Hilton as her muse:
So, how did you become involved with Hip Hop Squares?
They literally asked me to do it. At first I just thought it was like Hollywood Squares, then I realized they were doing the hip hop version. Here I am, this little pop girl and they stuck me right at the top, and I’m like the only girl in the episode or in any of the squares. I just thought it must be for comedic purposes that they threw me in there ’cause I’m in between like Fat Joe and DJ Khaled.
How would you describe your sound and your influences?
Industrial Pop, like marching band beats with strong vocals. Almost like militant-styled fashion mixed with ‘90s melody.
It seems like you’ve been working on your debut album for such a long time. For years! [Laughs.]
When can we finally expect that to drop?
Well, I know the label is thinking of dropping an EP in June and then after that we’ll start gathering tracks together. I want to record as much as I can so people get the best possible first look at me. We’re about like 40 songs deep right now, so at any moment we could literally drop an album, but we want it to get within the the lane of “Graffiti.” We want it to be competitive and we want it to be strong. We want it to be the best definition of me who I am as an artist.
MTV’s Hollywood Crush caught up with Kat at Wango Tango to talk about what’s next for her character and Nina Dobrev’s character, Elena. Spoilers for those that haven’t seen the finale.
“Oh well, I’m so excited,” Kat shared with MTV News earlier this week at Wango Tango. “I love Nina. I’m a huge fan of her. She works so hard and, as her friend, I get to see when she plays Katherine versus when she plays Elena. So it’s really great for me to be able to, I don’t know, I’m getting so excited to see what she’s going to do because it obviously has to be different than Katherine. And she’s definitely going to bring the vulnerability of Elena to it, and she’s gonna rock it out. I know she will.”
But it might not be just Elena who makes a move to the dark side. Kat shared that witchy Bonnie might also embrace that side of herself next season.
“Well, a lot of her decisions that she made in the episode ‘Before Sunset’ and the season finale were affected by, I think, the whole of season three and the things that happened and her making the statement that ‘I’m not gonna let you guys push me around anymore,'” she said. “So I think you’re gonna see an even stronger Bonnie, a more surprising Bonnie, a character that’s gonna make some decisions that are going to surprise people. And then I feel like a lot of people want to see a darker Bonnie. So we’ll see if they play with that. It’s amazing. I’m surprised. I thought that people wanted Bonnie to have a halo all the time. But if it’s justified than it’s never bad.”
Kat and Joseph Morgan were on WPIX to talk about their mothers for Mother’s Day. Click the picture above to view.
Also, the CW, in conjuction has released a series of Behind the Scenes videos of Kat talking about her music. The videos don’t embed, and are restricted to US citizens only. Below is a longer version of the video I posted earlier.
When she’s not playing Bonnie on The CW’s The Vampire Diaries, Graham’s busy putting out dance hits, including her singles “Sassy” and “Put Your Graffiti On Me.” Celebrity blogger Perez Hilton has already proclaimed Graham as a favorite artist in the gay community, an honor that Graham herself is proudly living up to with a music video she dropped on National Coming Out Day. Although Graham has yet to release her debut album, she’s already been on tour with the Black Eyed Peas and has had some of her music featured in episodes of The Vampire Diaries
She also talked to Ebony Magazine about her music and career plans:
EBONY: You’ve been creating music and releasing singles for years but this is your first project with a major label. How would you describe your sound and evolution as an artist? KAT GRAHAM: I would describe it now as strong vocal and heavy drums, melodic 90’S bitch pop. It’s definitely grown into fun, self-empowerment, self-ownership kind of music.
EBONY: Many of your fans are really embracing and enjoying your focus on music right now but there are always a few people who just want you to stay who they know you to be and don’t want you to branch out and grow. How do you deal with those people who want you to just be Bonnie Bennett forever? KG: I don’t let that get to me. I like Bonnie, but I’m a hired actor and I am hired to play a character, whether a good or bad one. I try to be unbiased and middle-of-the-road about the character and just become them [on set] and then leave them. So, it’s like the more work that I do [outside of acting] people start to learn who Kat Graham is [as opposed to] a TV character who I am so different from and who I don’t even control.
Kat just announced on her Twitter that she’s been officially added to the GLAAD Atlanta Council. Congrats Kat!
On a related note, here’s a new interview from The Advocate. The singer-actress speaks to The Advocate about pursuing her hot single “Put Your Graffiti On Me,” her obsession with drag queens, and her close ties to the transgender community.
Although best-known for her role as Bonnie Bennett on the CW’s hit series The Vampire Diaries, Kat Graham’s true love is music. With her stunning voice and sexy choreography, her new single “Put Your Graffiti On Me” has caught the attention of names like Perez Hilton and RuPaul’s Drag Race contestant Jiggly Caliente. And as an appropriate rite-of-passage for the rising actress-singer, she’s even been noticed by Sherry Vine, who has has already produced a naughty parody of the song. Graham speaks to The Advocate about pursuing her music career, her obsession with drag queens, and her close ties to the transgender community.
The Advocate: I know you’ve been acting for a while, but when did you find a passion for music? Kat Graham: Well, I was a backup dancer when I was 14 or 15 years old. That’s when I started to dance for other acts. I was pretty young. I saw what they were doing and I saw myself in the background of it. I thought that I could do what they did. I actually got into music around that time. I started making mostly beats and making tracks in my bedroom. That eventually led to everything, from working with Will.I.Am to signing to A&M/Octone Records. So it’s been a natural process. It’s been a hustle and a struggle, but it’s been great.
On that note, how did you go about booking yourself on a gay club tour just a couple of years ago? You know, it’s so funny. It’s like you’re this little black girl walking into Fubar and talking to everyone saying, “Hey, I’d love to perform here for free if you would give me a chance.” That was the first step into everything that has become so much a part of who I am and so much a part of my performances and lifestyle in the gay community. I’ve been so completely influenced by performers in the community, drag queens especially. I feel like most of the world, or the mainstream, has the complete false perception of a drag queen or a transgender performer. There’s so much incredible beauty and style and ferociousness that goes into it. I feel like what I want to do, the more I grow as an artist and the more known I become, is to help raise that knowledge of how incredible these performers are. I feel like so many artists take different things from different queens and the originals never get any credit. For me, I’m like, “Listen, honey, I learned everything I know from a drag queen.” I’m part of a house in Atlanta, the House of Brooks, with Phoenix and Nicole Paige Brooks.
So where did your inspiration for “Put Your Graffiti On Me” come from? Different places. One, I’ve always been about self-acceptance and self-love. I wanted to express that in sassy way, where it’s like if you want me come and get me. I wanted to put it in a song that had euphemisms. So when graffiti came about, it was perfect because I was singing about someone who I wanted, if they really wanted me, to come and put their name on it. It’s the attitude I have.
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