An Interview With Musician, Children’s Author and Much More, SIDE FX WITH KIM CAMERON
Posted On 04 Nov 2015
Kim Cameron has had a consistent presence on the Dance charts, DJ/pool charts and regular airplay (with impressive list of major markets) on Top 40 Pop & Rhythm station mix shows. She recently scored significant success in the U.K. She sings the National Anthem at NFL games and, in addition to all of this, she is the author of a children’s book series.
After releasing the EP version of “No Regrets”, the songwriting inspiration continued. Using this fresh new sound and approach to her dance music style, Kim decides to release No Regrets – the album version – the end of January with remixes and new tracks. Drive soars to the top 200 on both BDS and Mediabase charts while hitting #1 on DJ charts in the US. Based on the rave music blogger reviews on the EP, the album is now knocking the socks off even the biggest critics, with three #1 hits and four Top 10 hits from the same album. London’s own Hot 96 picked up Blind Love, while 90 European stations picked up 4 of the other albums singles. This may be Kim’s biggest year yet.
Learn more about Kim Cameron in the following All Access interview:
Thanks for your time! So, what’s a typical day like for you lately?
Since I am involved in a few projects, each day is different. I teach as a music teacher/mentor for after school programs with a non-profit called Guitars Over Guns. These guys are really doing great things for disadvantaged kids. When I am feeling on the creative side, I work on songwriting – it’s hard to ever really stop. In between trying to learn guitar and performing gigs, I travel to elementary schools and do mini-puppet / book readings from my children’s book series ‘Seaper Powers.’
Where did you first come up with your performer name, Side FX?
I wish I could take credit for the name. My first guitar player came up with the name. Together, we thought, wouldn’t it be fun to create a group that combines rock, jazz, middle-eastern sounds with dance music? What would the ‘side effect’ of that sound? And, then, my guitar player said “that’s it, Side Effects.” My only contribution was changing the spelling.
For someone who has never heard your music before, how would you describe it to them?
We are definitely traditional dance for the most part, but I also like to use the phrase ‘in the lounge groove.’ This past album ‘No Regrets’ was intended to stay in a lounge groove where you could dance to the music if you wanted, or, sip cocktails without thinking your head would explode. Right now, I am trying to make sure we have a nice mixture of both.
Congrats on all the success your song “Drive” has experienced! What does that feel like? Did you have a feeling that it was going to be so well-received at Dance Radio and Mix Shows?
There have been a few magical songs that I knew out of the gate, they were going to be well received. ‘Drive’ was one of them. I have only had a handful of those kinds of songs where the right message, the right rhythm, the right vocal, right production just worked. Of course, I never know how radio will respond, but I always hope they love the record as much as I do.
Tell us about your new single “Falling Stars” and your work with The Wideboys on the remix.
I finally got to meet the Wideboys a couple weeks ago in the UK on a radio and TV tour. They are so charming and creative in every way possible. Falling Stars is the second song we have worked together on. For me, their sound is a perfect match with my sound. Musically, I think we marry flawlessly. Falling Stars is again, one of those songs that has just the right lyrical content to stay interesting. And, I know, how many love songs can one girl possibly write, but here I go again….the hopeless romantic.
I understand that you are also a children’s book series author. Can you elaborate on all of that? What’s “Seaper Powers” all about?
I was inspired on tour after meeting a little girl, who was probably 12 at the time, told me that she had a fascination with octopi. I was amused, because most little girls would love dolphins or whales, when it comes to sea creatures. The following day, the band and I wrote a song, just for fun, on the beach (since we were touring in the Caribbean at the time– I know, hard gig) ‘Mr. Octopus.’ It was supposed to be a tongue-in-cheek song, but after we finished, my guitar player told me I should write a story around the song. After I wrote one, we turned it into an audio book, then a printed book, and finally, a series.
The premise of the series is all about a little girl, who goes on vacation with her parents and discovers that she has magic powers in the sea. She can talk to fish and ends up befriending an octopus and a starfish. Together, they go on many adventures together. It is a lot of fun – especially when I go to the schools and perform mini puppet shows.
In all your 7+ albums, what do you think has been one musical constant and how do you think you and your music has grown over the years?
What an interesting question. I definitely have grown into a better lyricist. And, maybe I am getting better at more memorable melodies. You become your toughest critic, but I have stayed true to writing about real things, real people, real feelings. I still believe my job is to tell stories. Using music is just a great way of telling a story – I just hope I am telling it in a way that people remember.
I’m a Redskins fan so I must ask you about performing the National Anthem at one of their games back in 2011. What was that experience like for you?
The Redskins game was fantastic, but it was only 21 degrees out, so not the greatest time to sing. The Giants game last year, however, was 70 degrees. And, since it was my second time at the National Anthem, I have to say, I enjoyed it a lot more. Both experiences were completely magical. They were both the hardest and the most exciting, and most memorable performances that I have ever experienced. You cannot top the National Anthem at an NFL game. You just can’t.
Out of all your many accomplishments so far, what are you the proudest of today?
I am proud that I have made it this far. It is very easy to give up. Every artist is really running their own business, so as a small business owner, you have to be very smart on how you invest your money. At the same time, you are the product, and often those two concepts clash. Rising above the clash and making sure the creative always wins, is always the best answer. So far, with my 200+ song catalog, the creative has won, and that makes me very proud.
Who are some of your all-time favorite artists and who would you love to work with in the future?
There are many. I love Cher because she has proven to be relevant no matter what year or decade it is. I love James Taylor because he tells beautiful stories. I love Zedd because he makes me think about sounds differently. 3 Doors Down has been on my running playlist for awhile because their sound and messages are timeless. And, I guess, Jem is also on my favorite artist list – very fresh sounding.
What do you hope is the message of your music? What do you hope listeners take away from your songs?
I want listeners to escape. In a world where we face so many obstacles and are always battling wars inside ourselves, it would be nice to, at times, just escape it all, even if only for 3 minutes. That is what I hope people do when they listen to one of my songs.
Is there anything else that you would like to share with our readers about yourself or your music?
Only that, I will to continue to write new music because, we all need something new.