I am trying to reach out to as many people as possible because I feel I have a lot to give. Not just in my music but personally as well. Sharing my life experiences and living my dream, encouraging others to do so as well.
Many are talented but few have star potential. As we've all seen on reality competition shows such as American Idol, X-Factor, and So You Think you can Dance. These shows have also taught us that no matter how talented you are, if you don’t have a big enough fan-following, you will be “eliminated”…taken out of the equation and left to find another route into the industry.
I've interviewed and featured many artist on Dreamheart Spotlight both rising and established, but never have I seen an artist right on the pivotal point of their career. Until now! By way of the outback country, meet Katja Glieson. This Melbourne, Australian born singer/songwriter living in Los Angeles is on the cuffs of a record deal!
Her ReverbNation shot up to number one in the charts in a little over a week. Her first music video has been accepted to screen at the 2013 Phoenix Comicon Film festival and nominated for best music video.
Katja’s electric music videos are unforgettable. But unless you are subscribed to her website, you’ll only get teasers on YouTube.
“The idea of all my music videos is that they follow a story line. So each single as it is released has this recurring character "Special Agent Kitty and her cyborg double MK1 fighting crime, falling in love, kicking butt and saving Terminium City (the city the videos are located in)”, she said.
“If you can imagine Gotham City or Sin City in that they are out of this reality and are a bit darker than the world we live in, its kind of like that. I am a bit of a Sci-Fi / Comic nerd so I came up with my own graphic novel, music video episodic, album.”
I've subscribed to katjaglieson.com free of charge the second she appeared on my radar and can honestly say that “MANHUNTER” can captivate an audience. Katja had original lyrics that demands attention.
“From around 3 years of age, my mom took me take dance classes at the local community center It was called ‘The Tin Shed’”, she said.
“I come from a very working class area, so we didn't have a lot of money to do ALL the things we would have liked to do. My parents had to support 4 children so they did the very best they could. In Primary School, I joined the choir, but I mainly sang at home to my favorite musical movies like 'Grease' and 'My Fair Lady.' I dropped out of dancing and took drama classes then dropped out of drama classes and took sing lessons. When money got really tight, I joined my local community theaters and did musical productions.”
“I was first trained as a Jazz/Blues singer, thus my vibrato and sliding which irritates a lot of my producers”, she mused.
Katja’s musical inspirations and overall music preference are not limited to a certain genre.
“OHHHHHHH where do I begin? I LOVE … Elvis, Elton John, Roy Orbison, Ray Charles, Bette Midler, Dusty Springfield, Michael Jackson, Britney Spears, Santana, Christina Aguilera, Toni Braxton… stop me because I will keep going,” she said.
“…my song to exercise to right now is ‘All That Matters (Beautiful Life)’ by Kesha, my cool down track is ‘Not My Time’ 3 Doors Down and my yoga track is ‘Silence’ by Sarah Maclauchlan .”
While it’s apparent Katja enjoys a wide variety of music, her response to the most embarrassing song in her MP3 player was shocking.
“Ok the most embarrassing songs on my playlist are……. Dora The Explorer soundtrack! I know let me explain, I do a lot of stuff with kids, I have done a lot of theater for kids and parties for kids, I have volunteered and performed at children's hospitals and they love Dora, so I have a playlist just for Dora songs,” she said.
Katja has gained a lot of notoriety in the Indie online arenas but her goals expand outside of the World Wide Web.
“I dream huge! I would love to be touring, performing live creating amazing music and music videos that many people enjoy. I also love connecting with people and motivating them to be the very best they can be”, she said.
“It would be an absolute dream to perform at massive stadiums like Maddison Square Garden, The Staples Centre, Rod Laver Arena. One of my big dreams has always been to perform at a huge Carols By Candlelight and a large cities New Years Eve Celebration. I can dream can't I?”
Katja went on to say, “I would most love to open for a lot of artists who are no longer with us, but now I would say I'd love to open for Kesha I think she is so much fun. I love her sense of humor and her style is so unique.”
One thing that sets Katja aside from other new coming singers is she writes her own material.
“I love writing music and lyrics. I used to write poems when I was really little. Everyone's Birthday or Christmas Cards always had a silly poem in them. Should have got a job with Hallmark methinks,” she said.
“One of my songs really powerful to me is a song called ‘Infectious’ I wrote it personally about all the addictions I have had. By writing it I realized everyone has a period in their lives where they are addicted to some sort of toxic vice and go in a downward spiral until you snap!
‘Desperately I fall to my kneesFor me it was actually about a sugar addiction I had for a few years. Before I learnt about proper nutrition, I was dieting and only knew to count grams of fat (crazy I know) I literally would eat two big bags of Candy a day just to have energy and then I'd crash. When I finally learnt about what I was doing to myself, it was so hard to break the addiction. I felt no different from someone who is addicted to cigarettes or alcohol.”
I'm crying, screaming
Help me please
Oh give me the strength
To say goodbye’
There’s some artist in the industry that have others to write her hit songs. Sometimes the behind the scene writers are publicized. Other times they are not. In the industry, song writers whose work is officially credited to another person, are referred to as “ghost writers.” Katja's open to the possibility of “ghost writing” (unaccredited) and guest writing (credited).
“I have always written or Co-Written my songs, but I am very much open to having someone write for me. That would be such an honor. I would love Max Martin, Dr. Luke, Ester Dean or Linda Perry write something for me.
Max Martin and Dr. Luke are just brilliant with melody they always come out with songs that are fun and catchy.
Ester Dean writes really powerful, sexy tracks for women, and Linda Perry has written the most beautiful ballads I have ever heard. So any of those would be amazing”, she said.
Few people know that this rising starlet cannot ride a bike. “Don't try to teach me I will hurt myself,” she exclaimed.
Aside from being a reader of autobiographies, biographies and educational/motivational books; she has a studious appreciation for the classics.
“…I am a huge fan of Shakespeare”, she said. “I love getting the text and studying it, studying the character and the story. It is such a wonderful and challenging experience for an actor to do Shakespeare”, she said.
Katja is very passionate about spreading hope and motivation to those who need it most, or feel they are stuck in a rut, or unworthy of what they really truly desire.
“I honestly do not think I am any more special than anyone else”, she said. “I do however, think that I have a lot to share - where I am right now has NOT COME EASY. I have every excuse to not be pursuing this career path and still I persevere because I just can't stop! I love singing, I love writing and performing and meeting people.”
She recently had her first gig at Whiskey A Go Go Sunday 10th March 9:30pm.
“The gig was amazing,” Katja exclaimed. “I had fantastic feedback. I was so happy that people had fun and enjoyed themselves and had a bit of a laugh. The guy at the backstage door said ‘Please come back again soon. You are amazing.’ I had Marcus Spence from Moseley Music (Timbalands label-formerly Timbalands manager) perplexed. He couldn't believe it was my first show he kept saying ‘What? This was your FIRST show? Wow girl I'm impressed.’”
Katja’s acting manager, Nick Campbell from Velocity Entertainment Partners, couldn't believe it was done in less than 2 weeks of rehearsing a few times a week for a couple of hours.
"If that is what you can do in less than 2 weeks on NO BUDGET I can't wait to see what you can accomplish with more resources," he told her.
Want to know more about this Dreamheart?
To contact Katja for booking and/or additional information:Email: firstname.lastname@example.org/katjagliesonwww.facebook.com/katjamusicwww.twitter.com/katjagliesonwww.youtube.com/katjaglieson
Credits: Emily Sully Photography. All images owned by Ben Jackson at Biki Films