Introducing Kaya Jones

Kaya Jones is causing a commotion, earlier this year she released the track Boyfriend, a song that many other artists had shied away from recording. The song contains the lyric ‘My boyfriend’s has got a boyfriend now and this girlfriend us just figuring it out’. While Katy Perry is happily singing about kissing girls and liking it, it seems that few artists were prepared to record a song about guys hooking up.

Jones is a former member of the Pussycat Doll’s, you heard her voice on their debut album but by the time the band started making videos and going on world tours Kaya Jones had already left to start her solo career. She’s slowly been building up fans around the world and is now releasing an EP of her songs. OUTinPerth spoke to Kaya Jones from her base in Los Angeles.

How long have you been working on this EP for?
I’m going to say about two years of honing in on a sound, tacking many songs and building a fan base through touring. It’s been a good decent amount of time building a base, making sure the songs are right and getting in there are recording with all these different powerful producers.

Who have you been working with on the record?

I’ve worked with a lot of European artists actually on the record. I worked with Accident who’s Norwegian he did two songs Like You and Release the Energy and I worked with Yves out of Belgium, so I was tracking in Belgium. I worked with a lot of different DJs and producers. I’ve been very inspired by the European sound that I think a lot of artists are honing in on now because dance music is nothing new to the rest of the world, in America it’s become a very big thing. Because dance music is so big in Europe I think they are aware of newer sounds and always ahead of the game when it comes to dance music so it was very much honing in on artists over there that can collaborate.

One of the songs on your EP Boyfriend has been quite controversial.
I’m not sure of what the exact controversy is. I’m aware that it is to some people. It’s was kind of a song that I felt needed to be recorded and put out there. A lot of people love I Kissed a Girl, and I adore Katy Perry, and people are OK with that but if we talk about the LGBT community whether it’s about marriage or a woman being left for a man or a man coming out as being gay, it’s interesting because it’s OK if it’s two women, or an open lesbian, but it’s not as accepted if it’s a male.

So [through the song] I’m asking a question, because I do a lot of work for equality and I’m part of the GLAAD committee and we’re about to do a tour for gay and lesbian equality. I perform on a lot of the gay clubs including in Dubai, the only gay club that’s in the Middle East and in Hong Kong, that’s another market where it’s not very open to talk about sexuality, or be open about your sexuality.

The song for me was a song that needed to be sung. If you don’t agree with the LGBT community and their rights then you don’t love I Kissed a Girl, you stand on one side and you own up to what your beliefs are, you don’t waver, you stick with it.

Your touring has taken you to some amazing places lately, you’ve been in China and Iraq, what were they like?
I went over to Kuwait and Iraq to visit the soldiers, the troops and there was so Aussie’s there too you know. It was very very cool and it enjoyed it very much.

I’ve also been able to visit Iraq, Kuwait and Dubai and see those countries and meet people, it’s very different when you meet the country’s people and the soldiers who are working over there. Those countries are incredibly beautiful, very hot and warm. China was amazing I got to see 15 of the 18 cities in mainland China! I’m actually the first artist to tour all 15 of those cities, isn’t it crazy?

China’s such a huge market now for music, a lot of people probably don’t realise how many people are there.
You’re right, it’s a really big and beautiful country there are so many facets to that country. I was lucky enough to have such amazing food, and see the Great Wall and the Forbidden City and Tiananmen Square.

Any chance we’ll see you in Australia soon?
I hope so. Gosh I hope so, Australia’s pretty beautiful, I’ve heard so much and I’ve seen beautiful pictures and of course I love watching Oprah! She did her finale big in Australia, I’ve wanted to go for years, and I have a lot of friends who are Australian.

Kaya Jones’ new EP Release is available now on itunes.

Graeme Watson