Exclusive: Kat Dahlia Dishes on Music and Love in Vixen Photo Shoot
While most 22 year-olds are dreaming about love and happiness, Kat Dahlia (born Katriana Huguet and formerly known as Kat Hue) is living it, and is happy to share her story. At 18 she moved from Miami to New York to pursue her dreams of making it big as a singer/rapper. And so far so good.
The Cuban-American songwriter has rubbed shoulders with Timbaland and Salaam Remi and she just released her second single, “Fireman,” which was preceded by “Gangsta” her lead single that provided her big break.
Kat has been through it all (at one point she lived in a hotel room with her mom and three siblings) and her music evokes her diverse emotions. With two songs on iTunes, she’s primed more than ever before for the release of her debut album, My Garden to be released next February viaVested in Culture/Epic Records.
“The Garden is a plethora of sounds, not unlike a garden of flowers,” Kat says. “You have daisies, sunflowers, willows, thorns—all evoking different emotions, expressions and meanings. I’m inviting everyone into my garden, my mind, my music.”
As she takes a moment out of her hectic schedule to talk music and her plans for the summer, we learn two things: Kat is a bona fide hustler with a huge heart.
Is songwriting and rapping something you’ve always wanted to pursue?
Songwriting was definitely something I always wanted to do; I just didn’t know how I was going to get to this point. I always imagined myself to be a great singer as a kid. The first song I wrote—and it wasn’t a rap—was a sappy love song about how a dude cheated on me. It was really juvenile; I don’t even think I’d kissed a boy at that point. But for some reason I knew all about heartbreak when I wrote that love song. I’ve always had an enchantment with rhymes.
When did you really dig into the rapping game?
Rapping just kind of came. As a kid I would write raps and record things just because I was so bored at home. When I was older I released my projectShades of Gray, one of the songs on it was “Gangsta” and that was the first time I really took the song serious. I really just to write on subjects about my life.
Is “Gangsta” one of your favorite songs?
It’s definitely one of my most personal songs. I don’t really have favorites, but “Gangsta” is definitely a special song because it is so personal and got me to where I am today. So it’s an important one, I would say.
Do you have any rapper in mind for a remix of “Gangsta”?
I want to reach out to 50 cent. I definitely would not mind having him on the remix.
Is he someone you admire?
Absolutely. First of all, he’s an amazing writer and songwriter. What he created for himself is amazing. He did what he had to do to get out of the lifestyle he was in and once he was out, he created stability for himself and his business. He’s thriving and hopefully happy, so I’m happy for him.
How do you define success and do you feel that you’re successful at this point in your life?
I think success is happiness. I think that this industry can be very unforgiving and cutthroat and full of a lot of unnecessary drama. But as long as I stay loyal to the music and what’s really important, I’m okay.
Some say your music and personality is complex, how do you respond to that?
I think that we’re all complex beings. I don’t think I’m the only one, it would be silly to say that.
Artistically I can be very, very complex. I have my very vulnerable moments and I have my very strong moments. I think in the vulnerability, you find strength and in strength you can find vulnerability. I think that’s why”Gangsta” has so many vulnerable, break down moments but then also very strong moments. My music can be very complex, but I think that’s just a reflection of the human spirit.
Let’s talk a bit about your upcoming album, My Garden. What can we expect?
The album will be released early next year and it’s a plethora of emotions and sounds. The album shows a different side of who I am—I’m inviting people into my garden, my mind and into my thoughts. It has happier songs and deeper, more inspiring songs.
You talk a little bit about your love life in the songs. Who are you dating now and what type of guys do you like?
I’m not dating anyone right now. I have zero time to date anyone. But if a dude comes correct and knows how to make me laugh, that’s all that really matters. You have to make me laugh and be able to laugh at yourself. I just like to chill and joke around, especially because my work can be so overwhelming. When I’m with a dude, I do not want the drama. I don’t need it. I’ve been through the drama; I’m good.
Who’s your dream celebrity boyfriend?
Bradley Cooper. He’s hot, sexy, funny and he seems very chill. And from what I hear, he lives with his mother, which I love. I think that is the cutest thing ever. My sister was telling me he moved to LA and had a crazy life and then he ended up moving back in with his mom. I love that. I think it’s cool and down to earth. But we’ll see. He could be a total asshole and end up having a little dick. So, you never know.
What trends are you getting into this summer?
I’m from Miami, so for me, I’m just looking forward to getting into bathing suits and getting a tan. I love summer prints and floral prints. I also love wearing white and beach dresses; that’s all I used to wear when I lived in Miami. I used to get them from Walgreens or Forever 21 for like $8. It’s too hot to be really fashionable.
Where are you hanging out this Summer when you’re not too busy?
When I’m not busy I’ll be in Miami. Sometimes it’s nice to get away from the New York mindset. New York City is a creative and active state of mind. So sometimes you have to get out of that environment. Sometimes I get overwhelmed, but when I take a step back and disappear I feel better. Usually it’s me going to the beach—I can reset my batteries and realize what’s important to me.
What beauty products are you carrying around this Summer?
Honestly, as long as I got my tan and I’m not looking too pale, I’m good. Right now I like Clinique mascara, but sometimes it clumps. I really love the Cover Girl volumizer mascara you can from Walgreens. It’s perfect and simple.
What are your favorite words to live by?
I tattooed on my body, “Be still. This too shall pass.” It reminds me that as long as I stay still and calm no matter what it is, it’ll pass. But at the same time, that goes both ways. If it’s something that’s really amazing, something that you really want to jump for joy about, that’s going to pass too. You just have to constantly be still and happy with everything that happens, because no matter what, it is what it is and it’s all for a purpose.
How’s it working with Creative Executive Sylvia Rhone who is also Chairman of Vested in Culture?
Sylvia is amazing. She really is pushing for me [to do well] and I’m just so grateful. For whatever reason, Sylvia came into my life and taught me that if there’s something that you believe in, don’t give a shit about what anybody says. You believe in it and you go for it. Stick to your guns. She’s a legend in the industry, and it’s great to have her around.
Styling by Tiffany Hasbourne (@TiffTheStylist)
Photographed by Karl Ferguson (@KarlFergusonJr)
Location: Robin’s Jeans (@RobinsJeans)
Makeup: MAC Cosmetics (@MACcosmetics)