Previous Story 08.05.18

Clockwork

I was thinking for long about how to start this article… So many things to say, so much on my heart and yet, I somehow don’t want to say too much either. You see, I’ve always been used to share a lot of my life and I do feel like I grew up in some way with many people watching. Even though I was choosing what I wanted to show… I guess this kind of brings me back to the beginning and I think there are some important things to say. So let me take the time to explain. Let’s jump back a bit in time shall we?

I remember when I was 16, still in high school in Switzerland, taking the bus each day after school to go back home to my little village lost in the swiss hills, one bus every hour, one little “épicerie”, one post office and a view on cows and lambs from my bedroom window. I’ve always been an awkward person, very uncomfortable in social situations or with people I don’t know well enough, so making friends at school was always hard, and oh my did I never really have success with the boys. So when I came home everyday from school my automatism was to turn on the computer and browse the web, for hours… I would prefer to play the Sims than go out and enjoy nature with the other kids. I didn’t have a social life really, neither was I really allowed to go and hang out in town that much. So my favorite activity was to literally binge nerd out, and that’s what I did. Opening a blog was so natural to me. Internet felt welcoming and protecting at the same time, through it’s comforting digital barrier. It felt like I could be anyone I wanted and eased my shyness. Suddenly I felt like there was a community that I could be a part of and alongside gave me a deep sense of belonging and instant validation/gratification. Of course at the time, there wasn’t even Instagram, so I had no idea that blogging could possibly ever turn into a career. My dreams of a carrer in music weren’t flying that high honestly. It was ridiculous to even hope for it. I was way too shy to sing in front of anyone really and all the songs I wrote at that time, no one other than perhaps my downstairs neighbor could ever hear.

Kayture was my bubble of escapism. It was like coming back to something comforting and gratifying after an unsatisfactory day at school where I truly felt like no one could get me and well, it was definitely and most absolutely my fault too as I had the hardest time opening up. For some reason, it was so easy to open up online. I felt like I was just writing to myself and clicking on the publish button didn’t feel like much. The amount of people reading my blog felt abstract to me in some way and didn’t at all scare me off from saying what I had on my mind. To this day, I can say, it is so much easier for me to write than to speak. To hide away than to stand in the light. Which is very paradoxal knowing that I publish pictures of myself… But it’s as if I have so much distance towards myself, that the girl in these images is not even me. It might sound absurd or hypocritical, especially for some that might have met me in real life as I can be quite open and enthusiastic, but I think it’s part of my contradiction. With time I learned to hide my introversion. I’d say that I could even seem very outgoing. But it always feels like real effort to me. I always felt much more happy behind my computer screen. When the blog started really blooming, a new sense of confidence did as well and for the first time in my life I really did feel like I belonged somewhere and people were accepting me. And even though the audience mainly wanted to see pictures of me, of my outfits, of my make-up, I felt like I had an incredible platform for creative expression and that I could balance content about me with deeper, more meaningful texts and perspectives.

You see, I have always believed and said that one shouldn’t play by the rules of the game, but should make them. There comes a point in your life, where playing by the rules too closely makes you forget about making up your own. And you get lost conforming to the crowd. I thought I was making up my rules, but actually I wasn’t. Even though it felt like it for a while. My days, were ruled by the idea of getting the perfect picture, and I was disgusted going on my Instagram and seing the abundance of obnoxious pictures of myself smiling in some gorgeous five star hotel, with a table full of food, my blonde hair, when in fact I was travelling and working so much that I didn’t even have time to develop real friendships other than with people I actually worked with, real relationships, or the ability to do all these trips by myself without having some brand pay for it. I felt like I lived in constant illusions. Even the compliments I was getting for my work, I couldn’t truly accept them anymore because I wasn’t proud of myself or of what I was portraying. It was harder and harder for me to attend events, shows, even meet fans as I just couldn’t accept any kind word, any kind of attention, I started hating having my picture taken by photographers and was feeling uncomfortable to the point of feeling sick.

I felt like I was lacking an absolute sense of integrity and not portraying at all a truly real version of myself and more authentic image for my generation. My life was ruled by the amount of likes I was getting under a picture and the amount of people who were following me. And what might have made me happy to post, was not necessarily what my audience wanted to see. They wanted the happy, poppy, bubbly images of me eating ice cream with long blond beach waves and short skirts, when in fact I was having anxiety attacks from the lack of reality in my life. I was miserable with the idea that people just wanted me to smile and keep smiling all the time although I was slowly drowning inside. I didn’t know how long I could last doing this, but one thing that kept me going is knowing that it actually made a lot of people truly happy. And even though it made me depressed, I kept going thinking that making my audience happy was worth it and justified the effort. So I tried using my influence to spread positive messages, and that’s why I decided to write my book, do the speech at Oxford, participate in powerful projects like “The Girl of Now” or do the meet & greets to spend time with fans. But as time kept going, I just couldn’t deal with the fact that the way people perceived me, and the way I was portraying myself, was absolutely not, at all, what I was and how I felt inside.

I am not saying I am a dark, sad person. In fact, I’d say that I am quite the dreamer. I try to always see my glass half full rather than half empty. It’s just that I wanted people to appreciate me also when I am not smiling. I wanted to stop giving a damn about how many likes a pictures would get and just post what I liked, portray myself how I want and make it truer to reality. I really haven’t changed that much… I can promise you that. In fact, I feel like I am much more honest now, I am much less fake, with more integrity and self respect than before. I don’t care to please any brand, I don’t care about a luxurious lifestyle, to have a new branded bag each month, I don’t care about fancy clothes. I do enjoy all these things from time to time, but I don’t care about them to determine how I live. If anything, I’d much rather not be exposed as much but just work instead, create and share my work, write some words here from time to time, and just have a nice, peaceful life. Truly merit the rewards. I don’t need no extravaganza and if anything I don’t want my life’s success to be determined by how rich or famous I am. To me success is determined by happiness, and it lies in much more simple things, integrity, real relationships, being proud of oneself, values… From the outside it looked like I had it all, magazine covers, expensive clothes, trips, but I felt so sad and alone inside, I felt like people were celebrating me for a bubbly character I was making lots of efforts to maintain, because I had to be a good role model, a good girl, that’s what people were expecting of me. This girl sure might have inspired and made people happy, but made me miserable. I felt like a one sided character and was tired of the rules of the industry evolving around fame, the networking games, opportunism, social and industry ladders. What made me mostly angry, is the fact that people would celebrate my appearance of happiness even though it wasn’t real but would get angry at me when I was showing more honest representations of the way I really am. It made me think longly about the way our society works and how a lot of the issues are caused by none other than ourselves. How we prefer a beautiful lie than the ugly truth. How we will always celebrate those who willingly and obnoxiously will chase fame, with rage and lust, instead of celebrating more humble artists that don’t need recognition but just deserve it. What we critic of the art industry, how everything is purely marketing today, how most music and art is crap, well it’s just based on what mainstream celebrates but there are so many incredible people out there who deserve recognition but don’t get any because they don’t want to play with the rules of the game and conform to what is valued by entertainment standards.

And you might say, “Yes but life is already hard enough, happiness in art, cinema and music helps the audience go through hard times”, and I will agree to that however there is such a wide scope of emotions, of ways of expressing them, we just don’t have the time today to really stop and look, really stop and listen, try to understand. Our attention span is so short, it seems like we consume everything at a scaring pace. And what saddens me even more, is the fact that everyone is trying to do what works, trying to look the same. All girls on Instagram want to look the same, pose the same way in their pictures, post the same images of their food or work outs, and it works. That’s what we celebrate. People like it, it is successful and yet we all end up looking like clones. We have this perverted curiosity about other people’s life. Oh this girl is pretty, what does she eat, how does she look when she wakes up in the morning? What shampoo does she use… And who is her boyfriend? I want to see them kiss, and dance by the eiffel tower.

I love discretion, I think all these things, such as love, such as friends, such as private life, are part of some sort of precious, sacred intimacy that should be respected. Big brother (for those who read 1984 by Orwell) is not just our government, it’s already us really. We all observe and stalk each other on a level that I think is vile. So I kind of wanted willingly to take the opposite approach and stop showing my life so much. Stop saying too much about what I do, who I hang out with, who I date, but instead portray a message, an approach, a perspective. Let my work speak for itself. I thought, ok  “You can cook for your friends and they will appreciate your gesture, but you can teach them how to fish and they’ll be truly thankful”. I thought, instead of showing my outfits, I will show what I am inspired by, what influences the perspective with which I live my life. So I began posting pictures from movies, stills from editorials, snippets from books I like, art work… Little videos I found with good messages. I felt like it was much more interesting to let you into my head than into my dressing room. I was growing tired of the capitalistic point of view of living. Of following trends, suddenly everyone wearing the same thing, posting the same pictures. I missed diversity, originality and if anything I wanted to encourage it… I understand that there’s something comforting in being able to identify oneself to someone online, often we don’t really know who we are so we find our identity through others. But if anything, I wanted to represent change.

Deep down, I always knew who I was and what I really wanted. What I was lacking was honestly the courage to stop caring about what people were thinking of me. That was really the hard part. Because I was used to the validation, this strange addiction of having constant need of people approving something you do, it meaning that you’re doing something right, that you are someone, that somehow what you do is good because people are liking it, and that it means you must be on the right path if people are validating it. It’s like a vicious circle… I do realize now that at the end of the day, the only person we answer to is this little voice in our head. I wanted to be the woman I always dreamt of becoming, I wanted to be proud of myself and not be shy of admitting what I was doing for a living. And I was ready to give everything up for that.

So I guess one thing lead to another, and the confidence I was seeking, came progressively. I don’t know if it was me just becoming tired of constantly being overly enthusiastic, being overly optimistic, overly positive, trying to please so hard those I knew didn’t even like me and never would, whether it’s brands or the audience, but I just got fed up. I wanted to cut the crap and chill down a bit. Take a step back. Not plan my whole day around this one picture. And you know what is so strange, is that the first months I started doing that, it felt like I went on a cleanse or, did a yoga retreat. It felt so. Damn. Good. To just sit with friends and keep my phone away, to travel and see in-cre-dible sceneries and not take pictures of it, not have my picture taken, just absorb it with my eyes and feel it with my heart, care less about how I look or dress. So yes some might say I started dressing in a really boring way, wearing black all the time and not really exploring like before… But inside, I feel like I am exploring like never before. It is this confidence I needed to do fully what I always wanted to, but never could. Music.

You know, I feel like I’ve never been hiding anything from you guys. I was talking about my passion for music for as long as I can remember. But the dedication it requires is on another level and it is impossible for me to do it halfway. Even when I first released “OUT” I feel like I was still not at the end of my search and development. I was still trying to find this middle ground between who I wanted to be, and who others wanted me to portray.

For the longest time I felt an incredible frustration. I felt like I ruined all my chances of ever becoming a singer because of the blog and because of this bubbly image I cultivated for so long without ever really showing depth, without ever taking the risk of changing my art direction for something less traditional, more challenging and clever. I was angry at myself especially because I felt like I would regret this so much and that no one would ever consider me seriously. So I just worked my ass off, without really saying much, kept sweating it off in the studio and trying to meet the right people who would believe in me, not for my numbers, but for my talent. And I wanted to find a team that would kick my ass, say that my blog and Instagram won’t ever give me respect in the music industry, that the only way is to work extremely hard and create something truly, real, beautiful and touching. Because the cute songs I might have been writing on my bathroom floor when I was 14 might be sweet, but we’re talking about a career here. And you know, now if there’s anything I can say is that I was wrong. I dont’ feel like I ruined my chances because yes I had a great career in fashion. In fact, I believe everything happens for a reason. And I think that if I never started Kayture and just struggled in Switzerland trying to be a singer, maybe I wouldn’t have made music from the same perspective as the one I have now. Today, I am not trying to prove anything, I am not expecting anything, if I manage to make 1 or 2 people feel something with my music, then I am happy, truly. All I want to do is create, find the purest words I have inside and transform them into stories, into music, into visions. Make some wonder and think… Maybe if I haven’t had the ups and downs with the blog, I would have sought instant success in music, would have let other people write my songs, would have conformed to trends, would have made something quirky and relatable just to facilitate the journey and make myself a place in the industry. It’s not how it works and I know it would have made me unhappy in the end.

This is also why I didn’t properly say anything when I moved from Los Angeles to Paris… As some of you might know, I lived in L.A for almost 3 years for artistic development. And I can now say, looking back, that it was the hardest time of my life. I felt like I had my ass stuck in between two chairs, one where I felt like a brat for being so miserable and hating doing what brought me money, opportunities, success, made an audience connect with me, and the other ass half just me not being able to handle what my life evolved around. I felt like a hypocrite, portraying values I didn’t respect in a human being. And I can tell you any time I really liked a guy, the first thing I would try to avoid talking about was social media, I was so ashamed of my day to day life and how I was earning my money. This is all very terrible to say and admit, but it is true. Los Angeles was the city that represented to me this very paradox, it’s so beautiful and sunny from the outside, but after a while it feels like the city of broken dreams. When I first arrived, it felt like heaven. Making friends was so easy, everyone was always so overly enthusiastic. But with time, it felt like people had a radar in their head, their attitude towards me would change from slightly arrogant to soul mate love when they saw I had 2 and something million followers, they would act like my best friends and invite me out to all these crazy events. I would let people into my home, work with some and now, they don’t even respond to my messages anymore. People I opened my heart to. Friends I spent parties with that were talking to me without really looking into my eyes but instead constantly checking who is around, who could be more important to talk to or take a picture with. And everything was great, and incredible, and amazing. Although at the end of the day, no one really cares about you. All they care about is climbing the fame ladder. People were hiding constantly behind this fake happiness when in the end they weren’t okay, and they were stressed out, and doubtful, and maybe if they opened up about it with people around them well maybe everyone would feel less alone in their fears and we could all lift each other higher up.

Sadly L.A to me felt very much like this, fake smiles, fake friendships, fake sympathy. Your value and importance determined by who you hang out with, who you’re dating or just your fame level. The verbal cruelty just kept going, and I am not talking aboutt myself but the way people were talking about others : “Oh but this artist is so 2016”, “Yes well he’s not even an A list actor, he’s C or D”. It’s like there’s an implicit social hierarchy present all throughout daily life, and very little respect. So if you don’t have any of that, well it’s almost like you’re no one. Not existing. Even to get a table in certain restaurants, if you’re not a celebrity, you can forget about it. I had people invite me for coffee just to ask me later how I managed to gain so many followers on Insta… Though at first they pretended it was just to chill and chat. And one girl in particular, that I opened my life to, my doors to, gave her professional opportunities, even a bed where to sleep but most importantly my love and pure care, well now she doesn’t even care to read my messages or respond to me. Because I guess she got what she wanted and needed out of me and then turned her back.

Creatively, working on my music there was just as terrible. I felt like all the people I was meeting, and I worked with some producers I used to admire a lot, didn’t give a flying fuck about my ideas. All they cared about were my numbers on social media and how to capitalize on that. So of course me coming in and telling my vision, they were instantly turned off. Why does a little chick like me want to do something introspective? Make her do some up beat pop song. Oh and she wants to write? Nah, no need, we have dozens of great pop songs already written let her lay down some vocals on the prods… And that’s what they call the music industry. Because that’s what we listen on the radio every day. Going to the gym to work out and seing all these endless lines of people on their treadmills trying so hard to be perfect, live perfectly, be happy, be grateful, and then having anxiety attacks because they’re keeping all of the rest in. It’s like humans trying to be robots. And I can’t blame us. The pressure and the standards of what society requires from us, are incredibly high. But I think, if we all allowed ourselves to be more real, and allowed ourselves not to be always so damn happy, well we actually would really end up be. It’s about letting go. It’s about serenity. Being whole, Accepting the dark and the light. Not being scared to open certain doors inside, stop trying to hide the negativity but turn it into something beautiful too. Everything we have inside, good or bad, is useful and beautiful. It’s what makes us human. Like the Yin and the Yang making us full and whole. There is dark within the light, and light within the dark.

Now. All I can say is I am so, so grateful for this blog which for years has always been there for me, to express myself freely no matter what and you know… I am so proud of my career and what I’ve accomplished. Sometimes I even feel bad that something I actually love so, so much could have made me so unhappy. But it is love. And love can hurt because it means so much. I am especially proud of having you guys follow and support me through good and bad, this is my best accomplishment so far. I am so touched that my story might have inspired others, uplifted some and that this blog might have been a little break in some of your lives, giving you a bit of joy and inspiration. That won’t change. What I always stood for hasn’t changed : fighting for dreams, making them happen with hard work, being a good person, using all our inner ressources to be the best version of ourselves and inspire those around us. The only thing that is changing is the presentation and the perspective.

Many of you asked me why I removed my Instagram content. And the reason is, I wanted it to be clear. I am opening a new chapter in my life and am incredibly serious about it. This chapter is music and I am looking forward to prove myself to you as an artist. I don’t want to be a blogger or an influencer… If anything I hope to move and “influence” those around me with my music. My posts on Instagram however, haven’t been deleted… They are part of my story and reason why I am here today. They are simply archived and I will bring them back when the time is right. Also I am of course keeping this blog which is my treasure for ever. I want it to be what it has always intended to be, a diary, a part of me shared with the world. It’s just that now, it will be here to share with you my journey through music.

I am really happy to have signed with E47 Records here in Paris as well as Live Nation, I will soon start doing my first showcases and I truly CANNOT wait to be on stage and share with you not just my virtual words through computer screens, or pretty music videos, but my energy. I dream about it day and night. The album is almost completely finished, there are so many songs that tell my story and just different stories, not just about myself. I wanted this album to be strange, cinematic, eery, triggering thoughts and all sorts of emotions. Like a puzzle, where you have to put the pieces together. As much as I can appreciate commercial pop, I don’t necessarily want to take this trajectory but rather do something a bit more poetic, sensual and subtle, with hidden messages for those who’ll care to find them…

As for Clockwork, and the rest of the songs that are going to come out as a matter of fact, I promised myself I wouldn’t explain too much what it is about as I think it’s quite clear if you read the lyrics and watch the music video… My favorite pieces of work are the onces where the artist doesn’t explain it’s interpretation, as it’s just his own perspective. What I am curious is knowing what it makes you feel. But here’s however what I’ll say : to me, it isn’t a song about a specific situation or event, it’s a song about behaviors representative of our generation. Our cruelty at times towards one another, our entitlement, our ego, the absence of innocence especially now in this digital era where options and opportunities are endless. These were all things I wanted to express in the music video, with the lovers scene, and the voyeurism of the public mimicking social media where we want to intrude on the purity of a couple’s love making. Because we can never get enough and always want to see more. The song is about this perversion in some way, about voyeurism and a cry for help, a prayer for purity. Here’s a little interpretation, if you want to read the lyrics, you can click here to access the genius page.

I want to thank again all the team who participated in the making of the video. The whole process was a dream come true… I couldn’t believe seing all these images from my head materialize in front of my eyes…First and foremost thanks to Giovanna Gorassini who directed it and managed to capture the essence of the song perfectly, in it’s strange, absurd and mystical way, our producer Remy Solomon and D.O.P Olivier Viguier for believing so strongly in the song and project, they united the strongest team I’ve ever worked with. Gab from BlackLab for the magical visual effects, to sweethearts Tara Ziegfeld and Gwendoline Franco for gathering all the costumes with me, creating the robots, my baby Elisa Parron for being the whole time on set with me, making these incredible backstage pictures that I am so excited to share with you bellow. I want to say a huge thanks especially to my music producer, Louis, my manager Cyril, Anne-So, Nico, Joelle and Helène from E47 for working so hard and believing in me no matter what, giving me wings to fly and absolute creative freedom. Nassim and Rodrigue for taking part in the creation of this song. There are so many people to thank… No matter what happens, my best moments and memories are the ones working with all these amazing, talented people. Also thanks to the great brands who participated in this music video, Dolce Gabbana for the gorgeous blazer in the red room and the metal crown, Atsuko Kudo and Zana Bayne for the cyber futuristic robot scene looks with all the insane black latex : I felt like cat woman. I will let you guys discover the backstage shots from the making off and can tell you already that the next song is already on the way… x K.

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