Popping Up: Kalin And Myles
Popping Up is our recurring look at new artists making noise on the music landscape. Because, hey — Madonna and Britney were once unknown, too.
When undiscovered R&B crooner Kalin White, 19, met rapper/beatmaker Myles Parrish, 21, at a house party in their native Northern California, they had no idea that they would become the pop sensations they are today. Only joining forces in 2011, they’ve already managed to round up a massive fan base, become Vine celebs, sign a deal with Republic Records and position themselves as one of the major frontrunners in the ever-growing world of “hip pop.” Drawing upon Bay-Area greats like E-40 and Sage the Gemini, the duo recently released their Chase Dreams EP, containing infectious jams like “Love Robbery” and twerk-inspired banger “Do My Step,” which has already sparked a Teach-Me-How-To-Dougie-style dance revolution of its own.
After just finishing up their sold-out “Chase Dreams” tour, the guys sat down with Idolator to chat about how this crazy journey all came about.
HOW THEY CAUGHT THE MUSIC BUG: “I think we’ve both kind of always been into a lot of music, listening to a lot of music, but never really making any of our own.” Myles said. “I didn’t start playing the guitar until 6th grade, but I’ve definitely always been into music.”
Kalin, on the other hand, was a little self-conscious of showing off his pipes. “The first song that I ever made was with this guy [Myles], but up until that point I was always into basketball and stuff like that. I would sing around the house, and my mom would try to brag to her friends like ‘My son can sing and yours can’t.’ I would be too shy to sing in front of them, so nobody really heard me sing until I was like 15.”
MUSICAL INFLUENCES: While Myles looks up to music self-starters like The Cataracs, Kalin is inspired by people who are true performers such as Chris Brown, Usher, Michael Jackson, New Edition,”and people that just move crowds.”
HOW THE DUO MET: Myles was having a crazy rager when one of his buddies brought Kalin along, which is how these two initially met. “We had always had known each other, and I would see him at the functions,” Myles said. “But, it wasn’t until two years later that I was making beats and just rapping for fun, and he put a cover up online, that I was like “Yo, you should come through. We should collab.” That was when we made our first song, and we ended up getting a cool response!”
IF THEY COULD CHOOSE THEE WORDS TO DESCRIBE THEIR EP, CHASING DREAMS…: “Energetic, warm and positive.”
Kalin And Myles — ”Love Robbery”
HOW “LOVE ROBBERY” CAME ABOUT: Just getting out of a relationship gone particularly sour, Myles needed a way to put his heart on his sleeve. “We were in my room, and we wanted to make something with more of a ’90s R&B feel. I just kind of made this beat, and it’s just my take on that. It’s definitely something that spoke to me a little bit more [because] it was about some things that I was going through, and we just wrote the hook that night for it. It’s about this girl that I’d been seeing that was like so…it almost seemed perfect, you know? And the next moment like she was gone. Yeah, I could kind of just let my heart do the talking.”
Kalin And Myles — ”Do My Step”
ON WORKING WITH HEARTBREAK GANG MEMBERS P-LO AND IAMSU! ON “DO MY STEP”: Kalin tells Idolator that Myles was really trying not to fan-boy when IAMSU! came into the studio and spontaneously decided to hop on the track. “So we had a session with P-LO out in L.A, and we just made a song called ‘Got You,’ which is also on the EP. We were kind of just listening to some beats, and in comes walking Myles’ biggest inspiration IAMSU! Myles was not trying to freak out, but I could see his heart from across the room going crazy. It was pretty cool, he pretty much just walked in. P-LO just started making a beat, and IAMSU! was like, ‘Yo, can I get in on this?’ And Myles was like ‘Uh….YEAH!’”
HIGHLIGHTS FROM THE “CHASE DREAMS” TOUR: “Definitely a show that stands out to us was Fort Lauderdale,” Myles noted. “Just the whole time, the whole set, they were just really into it, showing a lot of love. It was very hyphy. “Kalin added that the Oakland show was also a serious contender “We got back to the Bay, and we didn’t think that they could more wild than Fort Lauderdale because it was so crazy on the East Coast, but Oakland did its job. “
WHAT’S UP NEXT: “Basically, we’re working on a lot of new music.” Myles revealed. “Hopefully, we’ll get to put together a project sometime soon, but just for the moment we’re working on some music, playing shows and having a lot of fun.”
Kalin and Myles’ Chase Dreams EP is available now for purchase on iTunes.
Get an eyeful of even more pop music coverage, from artist interviews to exclusive performances, on Idolator’s YouTube channel.