[Interview] Kawehi Talks Passion and Success

One-woman band, Kawehi, rocked the house at Aisle 5 last weekend as part of her tour to promote her latest album INTERAKTIVE. Bullet was able to get up close and personal with the artist whose fame began on Youtube and who has developed a loyal following through live performances and Kickstarter funded albums. 

Did you ever expect it to go so far?

Nope. Never in my wildest dreams. I always knew that I'd find a way to do what I love for a living, creating music, but I never dreamed that I'd be doing it to this extent.    

When did music go from being a hobby to a passion?

I think I always knew that music was it for me, and I feel so lucky to have found it so early on in life, if at all.  Some people search their whole lives to find something they are really passionate about doing, I was super lucky.  There were times I wished I wanted a different path, like when I was working three jobs that I hated to pay the rent in L.A.. Or when I would busk for seven hours in the blazing sun on the promenade in Santa Monica and not make enough money in tips to pay for gas home. Those were rough {days}.  But something kept me going, made me never give up, and that was my love for making music.  When you love something that hard, whether it be music, your loved ones, whatever your passion is, you'd be surprised at the strength you have to keep it in your life.    

How do you attribute social media to your overall success? 

It definitely helps, in the short run.  It provides the exposure, the millions of eyes on your work. But you have to have something to back it up.  So yeah, you have one video that got millions of views and tens of thousands of likes.  Now what?  How do you keep them there, when there's some other content that's being shared right after yours? Social media helps get you to the masses, but it takes hard quality work to keep people there.  That's what I'm looking for - not one solo Facebook like or share.  I'm not looking for fans.  I'm looking for a tribe, peeps that will be with me the whole way.   

You have a beautiful voice, it sounds effortless. Were you trained? 

Thank you!  But I don't really consider myself a real singer.  I took a handful of lessons when I was a kid, nothing major.  Sang in Glee club in high school.  But I don't have that Whitney kind of voice that'll punch you in the chest, you know?  And that's okay, I use my voice as one of many  instruments. I know my limitations.

Tell me about your latest project.

It's called INTERAKTIV and it's out now!  It's not a "genre" EP. Honestly, I don't really fit in a genre.  But it's stories told from 900+ who made the EP possible and I'm super excited about it. 

What direction are you headed? 

Who knows?  I'm living the dream - I get to play around with instruments all day, create music with my best friend/husband, meet wonderful people who make my projects happen everyday. All with my loving doggies lounging at my feet or in the back seat of our beat up Honda CRV. Does life get any better than that? 


Photos by Sara Vogt.

Clara Goode

Interdimensional explorer addicted to a lifestyle of love and adventure. Dedicated to guiding lost souls to their own light through the power of written word. Tries not to take self too seriously. Loves dogs more than people and routinely disappears into the woods to hug trees.