CALYN delves into the intricate balance of emotions in her songwriting, especially highlighted in her latest release “Waiting.” She emphasizes her desire for the audience to find their own interpretation of her work, allowing them a personalized connection to the song. She shares her own take on the track, illustrating how positive aspects can exist even in detrimental situations, and stressing the importance of not settling just because of these positive traits.
Singing brings CALYN immense joy, serving as an escape from reality and a means to appreciate life and her hard work in the industry. Heavily influenced by her early exposure to diverse genres and growing up in a musical household with her sister DYLI, has led her to find a unique voice in the R&B genre. This not only has enhanced the artist’s creative process but has also contributed significantly to her identity.
Keep reading to find out more about this promising young talent.
“Waiting” touches on the idea of experiencing joy within difficult situations. How do you balance these contrasting elements in your songwriting, and what’s the key message you want your audience to grasp from the song?
Balancing the contrasting emotional elements in my writing for this specific song was kind of the concept of the project from the very beginning. I don’t typically write with any intention for my audience to grasp a specific message, solely because I want my audience to be able to interpret it however they please.
As for my own personal interpretation of the song, the message that went along with those conflicting emotions was the fact that there can very well be positive sides of a situation that isn’t good for you. Just because there are good things about someone or something, it doesn’t always mean you should stay.
Starting with background vocal recordings in Los Angeles, how did those initial experiences influence your music approach and what valuable lessons did you glean?
Growing up in a musical household because of my sister DYLI definitely had a huge impact on my music. More specifically, when I was around 8 years old I was recording background vocals for DYLI on reggae tracks. From there, it went from bubblegum pop, to r&b, to rap, etc.
Being that I was exposed to so many different genres face to face definitely made me question what sound would fit me best. It took years before I finally found my lane in a more r&b setting, but I’m so glad I took the time I did to do so. I learned so much at such a young age, because I dipped into everything. Although I still have so much more learning and growing to do, I’m so grateful to have experienced as much as I did, so early on.
How do your studio collaborations with your sister DYLI enhance your creative process and what unique qualities does she bring to your music?
Collaborating with my sister DYLI has to be one of my favorite things about the creative process, let alone growing as an artist in general, because I have her in my corner. I think we both are very self aware when it comes to our strengths and weaknesses regarding the creative process, so when we come together it feels like a perfect little program we have. I learn so much from her writing wise and tend to help her with melodies the most.
Over time, we’ve picked up on each other’s skills so it’s just gotten more fun to work together, constantly picking each other’s brains about anything and everything when it comes to our work. Specifically for my music, if I’m struggling to bring an idea to life, she knows exactly what to say to get my mind working in the right direction. I would say her lyricism is by far the most unique contribution to either one of our projects, she’s tough with the pen for sure.
Your parents instilled a love for music and travel in you at a young age. How have these influences shaped your identity as an artist and the themes you explore in your songs?
I was blessed to grow up in a family that loves to travel and it most definitely shaped my artistic identity. Being given the amazing opportunity to travel as often as I do has allowed me to really appreciate the cultures that surround me. I think the themes in my music have been subconsciously influenced simply by the fact that I’ve explored so many different cultures and the way other people live. World culture and experiencing other lifestyles first hand has always been something I value, so I’m sure it has and will continue to reflect in my work.
How do you aim to establish your distinct presence in the Alternative R&B genre, and can you share some lesser-known or unexpected musical influences that have contributed to your unique sound?
As an artist trying to make it in the r&b world, establishing my own distinct presence is definitely something I’m still figuring out. My main goal right now is to make a statement by simply being me rather than trying too hard to be different. I hope that one day I can put myself in a position to be fully comfortable exploring my own creative ideas without worrying so much about where it will put me in the future. As for musical influences that have contributed to my sound, I would definitely put Pink Sweat$ up there. I’ve always loved his sound, so I would for sure say his melodies have impacted the way I write.
What is it about singing that brings you immense joy, and how has your path as a budding musician personally enriched your life?
I think being surrounded by music my whole life heavily influenced the way I feel about it now. As corny as it sounds, something about singing in general, let alone creating original pieces, allows me to feel like I’ve completely escaped reality. For that same reason, my journey so far in the industry puts me in a position to appreciate my life as is. To sit back and think about how hard I’ve worked just to get here and how hard I will continue to work to find success in doing what I love is such an unreal feeling.
Considering the possibility of people interpreting your lyrics in various ways, could you share an instance where a fan’s interpretation of your song surprised you or added a new layer of meaning to your work?
I can’t recall a specific instance where someone has brought me their interpretation of one of my songs, but I do find that new layers of meaning come up all the time throughout the creative process because of my sister DYLI. It’s more often than not that I present a set of lyrics to her, she explains to me what she thinks they mean and it’s almost always a completely different meaning than what I intended. That factor alone tells me people are bound to interpret my words in so many ways, which is something I really value in my work.
Listen to “Waiting” below: