18-year-old Australian singer now living in Hollywood. Her latest single Look At Us is climbing the music charts and her viral video, Princess Rap Battle, in which she played a Disney Princess in (Elsa from Frozen) has over 51 million views on YouTube and over 200 million views on Facebook.
Additionally she was just named the #1 artist on Periscope with the most daily viewers – katjaglieson.com
What’s your background?
I was born in Melbourne Australia in the Western suburbs. My parents are both immigrants from Germany. The area I grew up in is a little rough. Let’s just say if you want to insure your home and contents or car, you will be charged a heck of a lot more because it’s considered a “high risk” area! My parents swear it used to be a quiet European area and the chaos just developed around them! I was the most fashionable girl in elementary school, I wore all my brother’s hand me downs. (I didn’t fit into my sisters old clothes because I was obese)
Explain your sound in 3 words?
Only three words? It would have been so easy a little while ago, but since working on my new music its become more difficult to describe. Fun Pop Fusion.
How has your experience moving to California from Australia been?
I won’t lie, it certainly wasn’t what I expected or what people think it will be like when they imagine moving to LA. It was really daunting at first, and difficult to be away from my family and friends. I worked a lot while studying in order to save to get here. If it’s something you really want to do, you have to be willing to make sacrifices. I have missed a lot of birthdays, family weddings etc but they do understand the commute is a large one, and expensive! But I wouldn’t change it for anything, I absolutely love living LA!
What do you miss most about Australia?
I miss family Christmas. It is the one time of year everyone gets together. I also miss the amazing coffee! Melbourne has the BEST coffee.
What is the best thing about living in Los Angeles now?
The best thing about living in LA, other than the weather, is the like-minded people. People come from all over the world to work in their entertainment art. I think it’s awesome that we all meet here and work with each other, encourage each other and grow together.
Why did you move to LA?
I have always been in love with the US! I am obsessed with the movie Grease, which may have something to do with it. I also love the producers I am collaborating with and my entire music team! LA just feels like home to me.
When did you first start singing?
I have been singing into salad bowls since I started learning to walk. Yep salad bowls – great acoustics. I was actually too shy to let people hear me sing, so I would find an empty corner and sing into the salad bowl. I did that for many years to follow until I could finally have the courage to sing in front of my family…. in high school!
Tell us about the huge success of “Princess Rap Battle”?
It is mental! The Princess Rap Battle was originally a very humble, low budget production. All of us girls and crew donated our time because we just loved the idea and collaboration so much! I am so happy it’s brought joy to so many peoples day. I am constantly hearing such wonderful feedback! It’s awesome to be a part of the beginnings of the Princess Rap Battle series.
What’s the feeling of reach over 50+ million views?
I cannot even imagine every single individual, sitting there, clicking away! I love that it has been translated to so many different languages so that people all over the world can enjoy it. It just goes to show the power of the internet and every singe individual in the world.
You also are the #1 recording artist on Periscope – how does this feel?
I love periscope! I have had conversations with fans (#SpecialAgents) over my other social media, but its a whole other thing to be able to talk in real time! A lot of other artists out here have their family with them everywhere they go. So now I can share all those experiences with the people that have supported me the most. We are on the journey together.
What is your dream collaboration?
My dream collaboration is of course the great latin jazz legend Carlos Santana! I love his passion for music. You can hear it when you listen to his songs. I feel like there is so much I could learn from someone as talented as him.
What music can we find on your iPod?
You will find everything from Metallica to Sounds of the Rainforest! I just have the most random stuff in my music collection. I usually listen to music that suits my mood or what I am doing. To get motivated to exercise, I will play recent hits, to chill out I play some Jazz, I have meditation music when I need to zen out.
Do you play any instruments?
I do play the keyboard when I write. I have tried the drums too, I LOVE THE DRUMS! I also play a fabulous cowbell!
Do you have a celebrity crush?
What do you do when you have some time off?
I usually periscope whenever I have time to spare. I just love catching up with people all over the world! I also love a bit of binge watching Netflix.
Any plans for a tour?
Yes! I have a new show with new songs that I can’t wait to perform! I will be headed out for a 20 show tour as of October. I will be traveling the West and East coast of USA. You can see all the dates and cities on my website katjaglieson.com/events
Any advice for upcoming singers?
My advice is always: be willing to do everything yourself. Writing, producing, recording, stage direction, creative directing. EVERYTHING. You don’t have to be amazing at it, but if you aren’t willing to do the behind the scenes jobs, you shouldn’t expect someone to do it for you. Learn all facets of the industry and respect everyones position. I found that just by being curious and willing to do everything myself, I have attracted people into my life that help me.
Any future plans that you want to share with us?
I am so excited I will be attending and performing my new single “Look At Us” in the boxing ring! August 29th Shane Mosley is coming out of retirement to fight Ricardo Mayorga. It’s at the Forum Theatre. I will be periscoping my time there, and rehearsals leading up to it. So I hope people get to know the song and sing it along with me! smarturl.it/lookatus for the single and smarturl.it/lookatusvideo for the video!
Where we can follow you online?
Favorite Quote: “Satisfaction lies in the effort, not in the attainment. Full effort is full victory” -Mahatma Gandhi
Favorite Book: “Push” by Chalene Johnson
Favorite Singer: Whitney Houston
Favorite Movie: GREASE!
Favorite travel destination: I haven’t been very far, but I really want to visit New Orleans. I am crazy for Jazz music!