Like a gem that is hidden deep within your soul awaiting to burst out and shine at the right moments, is in every way this artist. With an Indie-tronica Trip-Hop sound and spirit of sexiness our ears were caught in her web hidden in shadow. Join Dark Beauty Music on a musical quest for knowledge to find out more…
Interview Meikee Magnetic
Where were you born and where do you reside now?
I was born in Providence, Rhode Island and lived on the East Coast for most of my life. In 2009 I relocated to Northern California, which is where I reside now.
You are a vocalist and CEO of Castaliah Productions, LLC, tell us more on this and other creative sides of yourself:
I am a vocalist/songwriter for Castaliah, which is supported by Castaliah Production LLC. As CEO of Castaliah Productions LLC I mainly focus on the music side of things, as well as the creative direction for Castaliah. I tend to create all of my own melodies without the need of accompaniment. So when I first started working with Brian (producer for Castaliah) we worked a little backwards. I would write lyrics and create the melody, send it over to Brain and he would create music based on the melody and notes I created. It was all very new for him and he was up for the challenge. So far we’ve created all of our music never really being in the same room with each other other than to record the final mix. So it has been quit a challenge but now that we opened up our own commercial recording studio we are slowly starting to find a rhythm that works well for the both of us. Besides creating melodies, I also spend hours creating beats through Garage Band which I use to create songs just for fun. For those who know me, know that I’m really into cooking and baking. Cooking is truly another way for me to express myself creatively. Like music and notes, there are so many different ingredients you could throw together to create your own masterpiece. I’m also a professional hair stylist and make-up artist. I have been doing make-up for about 13 years now. Which comes in handy as an entertainer. I’m able to create my own looks just in case my hair designer or make-up artist is not able to make it for a big event. Lastly, Dancing! I love dancing! Not such a big fan of choreographed dance. Since I’m so creative a more freestyle approach works best for me.
Do you have professional vocal training?
Yes, I started my musical journey at age 8. I started training with my elementary school music teacher, Zhanna Volynskaya. She was absolutely amazing and since she was originally from Russia she naturally had a very disciplined approach to teaching music. I learned so much at such a young age and for that I am truly grateful. I received a scholarship at age 14 to receive classical vocal training with Eric Bronner who taught me all about opera and music theory which opened up a whole new world of possibilities for me at the time. I performed opera for years and it truly helped to shape my voice into what it is today. Currently, I have a fabulous vocal coach, John Scott who has helped further develop my voice with his own unique approach and methodology. After my first lesson…no lie… I noticed a HUGE difference. He even gives Skype lessons! CLICK ME. A day at Modena’s Closet. I had such an amazing team to work with! This was one of my favorite shoots! Modena’s Closet is truly boho heaven and I enjoyed modeling a lot of their unique styles. Jo Owens is a genius at what she does and combined with Helen Owens they helped to pull out all of the different characters that we created that day. Also, Angelina Peinado and her beautiful daughter Marissa Peinado (who is an up and coming model) came out to support. We all had tons of fun!
I’m intrigued about your electronic duo Castaliah which you are the vocalist for, in your words explain the music style to us:
Our music style is a blend of Indietronica/Trip Hop/UK Garage/Indie Pop. Electronic based combined with live instruments. Soulful, dreamy vocals with poetic song lyrics.
What inspired your song ‘Washed My Love Away’?
For this particular track I wrote the lyrics and came up with the melody. I literally wrote this song in 10 mins. I remember feeling a little down over the loss of my Grandmother and Uncle on a rainy, gloomy day. This song in particular embodies loss, whether it’s a loved one who has passed or a love relationship that did not last or was tragically ended. The rain is symbolic for cleansing away any emotional pain. This song is more about the emotions and feelings behind the vocals rather than the words.
You mentioned Castaliah Productions encompasses a recording studio (3 Point Studio’s), an artist management label, and distribution warehouse. This sounds like a big venture, can you go into detail on each:
Castaliah Productions, LLC does encompass a recording studio (3 Point Studio’s), an artist management label and distribution warehouse. Castaliah having a consistent place to record was definitely one of our many concerns as a band well before we even decided to open up 3 Point Studios. We recorded out of many different studios before hand, which made it difficult to get the consistent sound we were looking for. We opened 3 Point Studio’s as a commercial recording studio where we are able to record our own music as well as other artists. Another concern my team had was, not wanting to sign away our lives and money to an artist management label. Throughout the years and personally experiencing the hardships it takes to surrender your music, life and soul to most labels, we decided it would be best to start our own artist management label. With our artist management label, we would have full control and power over our passion, vision and most importantly music. Our distribution warehouse plays a huge factor in getting our music out to the right people at the right time and under own our control. We are also passionate about helping other fellow artists and bands and what better way to do that than through our business. Without Castaliah Productions, LLC none of this could be possible and I’m truly blessed to be part of such an amazing, knowledgeable and creatively awesome team!
3 Point Studio’s also houses your product-line company, Stacks Sound, which is a line of effect pedals. How did this come to life?
We were fortunate enough to team up with Stacks Sound. Each pedal is hand assembled, hand wired and hand painted at 3 Point Studio’s. We also provide a testing and proving ground for Stacks Sound in our live room where each piece of gear gets put through its paces and where real, immediate feedback from musicians converts into improvements on designs.
You were chosen to be the face of an up and coming Cosmetic line called Glō Girl Cosmetics. Tell us more and what type of products?
Yes, I am the face and spokes model for Glō Girl, which is a new and rising cosmetic line based out of Oakland, CA. They currently launched a wide array of fabulous lip colors with some fun names to match each unique shade- Vitamin E enriched anti aging formula keeps lips hydrated while delivering a burst of high pigment color with a lip smoothing matte finish. Check out their website: GLO GIRL COSMETICS and stay connected on INSTAGRAM
There’s a plan on launching your own TV Network called RMTV (Real Music Television), what can we expect from this project and where will we be able to see it?
My team plans to launch our RMTV (Real Music Television) channel exclusively on OVNIO (Cable TV social network. If you haven’t heard of Ovnio, please see this link to FOX BUSINESS REVIEW- Varney and Co. CLICK HERE
Programming will include:
Streaming music videos of local Long Beach, LA and Bay Area artists. A behind the scenes show about the Studio, Castaliah the band, and the artists who record at 3PT Studios. I will also be launching CFCTV (Crystal From Castaliah Television).
Programming for CFCTV will include:
Discussions with Helen Owens at Her Secret Hair Salon (Helen Owens is a Master Celebrity Hairstylist & Hair Extension Designer about real life topics such as; Getting through the everyday struggles in life, Youth in this new generation, Coping with mental illness, Spirituality, Health and Wellness. Fashion and Beauty segments with exciting guest appearances.
Let us know what inspires you from certain vocalists to avant-garde artists:
Growing up I remember my parents blasting The Doors, Jimi Hendrix, Led Zeppelin, Janis Joplin, Donna Summer, Michael Jackson and Aretha Franklin. I grew up listening to a lot of different types of genres yet never really gravitated to one specific genre at that time. It was basically whatever I was in the mood for. I always listened to music with my soul, never putting a label on it. I remember listening to the oldies radio station at age 11. My best friend and I at the time would obsess over vintage music from the 20’s-60’s. At age 12 I was a huge R&B junkie and wanted to sound like a combination of Whitney Houston and Mariah Carey. I started getting knee deep into rap music at 13 and at the time I was into Left Eye from TLC, Lil Kim, Foxy Brown, Busta Rhymes, NAS, DMX, THE LOX, WU TANG (the list goes on). After that I became fascinated with Neo-Soul; Eryka Badu, Jill Scott, Lauren Hill. I could go on for days. Opera and classical music was next and I have always had a huge obsession with Mozart. At the current moment I’ve been more into Trip-Hop and Indie-tronica. Haven’t felt too inspired by a lot of the artists that are out now but I still respect what they are doing, since I understand all of the energy and hard work that goes into creating music. My mind tends to gravitate to what I heard growing up when I do need a little inspiration.
What’s in your iPod?
I really do listen to Castaliah over and over again in my iPod just to analyze our sound and see where we could improve and what we could do differently to continue to come out with good music for the world to enjoy.
What future plans are you working on now, any new releases or music video in the works?
At the moment Castaliah is working on some brand new music. Slightly different from the current music we have out now. We plan on releasing a new single this fall called “Shadows” which is a song that is almost guaranteed to uplift your spirit and get you dancing (even if you don’t mean to) followed by a music video.
What does Dark Beauty mean to you?
When I hear Dark Beauty, I think of it as a gem that is hidden deep within your soul awaiting to burst out and shine at the right moments. Dark beauty is a beauty that cannot be expressed through words only felt through the soul. Hidden from the world and only realized by those aligned with its magical like essence. Dark beauty is rare and is the pinnacle of true beauty. Lastly but most importantly I would like to thank Dark Beauty Magazine for taking the time out to get to know who Crystal From Castaliah is and spreading the word. I’m truly grateful and thank you for all of your support. To everyone out there who is reading this, Thank you for taking time out of your day to learn more about who I am. I really do appreciate it.