Meet Kaay Taurus: a singer, songwriter, saxophone player, and producer emerging from Richmond, Virginia. Born in Fayetteville, NC, Kaay Taurus stays true to her southern roots by blessing the scene with a blend of jazz, soul, and hip hop fusion. Using smooth r&b vocals and sweet gospel harmonies, her music is a form of healing and inspiration for every listener. Her sound is heavily influenced by legends such as Anita Baker, Amy Winehouse, The Isley Brothers, Jill Scott, D’Angelo, J Dilla and more.
Her musical journey began with a saxophone at the age of 12. As her passion grew, she would develop into a vocalist, leading local school and church choirs. With a background in jazz and marching band, Kaay Taurus continues to broaden her scope of practice as a student at the Los Angeles Film Academy, majoring in music engineering and sound production.
Kaay Taurus is signed to Los Angeles based creative label, Mind After Midnight, and recently released her debut single, TLC. Her video, shot by theMSQshop, continues to gain traction on social media and various online platforms.
Not only is Kaay the performing artist, she is also a co-producer alongside Stephen "Dewon" Cheeks. Specifically, she played saxophone and bass on this record!
Vy: Who or what inspires your sound as an artist/producer?
Kaay: I’m heavily influenced by jazz music like Miles Davis and Jaco Pastorius. I love the feel of soul, r&b, and jazz together. In high school I discovered Frank Zappa, Grateful Dead, and The Sound of Animals Fighting. These blew my mind because they defied “the rules”.
Early 90s and 2000s production really inspired me to think outside of the box and motivated me to create my own sound. Some of my biggest inspiration comes from Timbaland, J DIlla, Black Star Crew, Ryan Leslie, and Kendrick Lamar.
Iman Omari, DJ Harrison, and Jack Dine are a few new age producers I really admire as well. They display such a high level of musicality.
Vy: Briefly describe how you got started in music and your musical background.
Kaay: I had an early curiosity for music and have been involved in everything from church choir to marching band, jazz band, show choir, and band choir. I started my journey as an instrumentalist playing clarinet and saxophone. I really enjoyed exploring all these different areas of music, but I knew I hadn’t tapped into my full potential yet.
I was 17 when I created my first production. I participated in a beauty pageant during my senior year of high school and produced a track on the Yamaha keyboard I got in 2000 for Christmas. It was so janky because I recorded into a handheld recorder, then a phone, and finally burnt it onto a CD. I took it to my pageant and solo’d my sax over it. I was very proud of myself, however, I ended up losing to someone who sang “Over the Rainbow”. I was mad as hell.
Working with a local band, “Uptown Souls” showed me that performing was my passion but the pandemic helped me assess my worth.
2022 is technically my “debut” but I have been producing for two years. My first single, “TLC”, was inspired by Anita Baker. One little run and I was hit with a million ideas. That record is my baby. I took time to create and nurture it with love. Shoutout to my co-producer Stephen “Dewon” Cheeks!
Vy: What is your work process like when you produce?
Kaay: I get inspired by a lot of different sounds and concepts. I can start with a phrase or melody and it just takes off from there. I’m not a percussionist, but I love a good hip-hop beat or drum pattern that creates a vibe.
The first thing I listen to in a song is the bass line. As a writer it challenges me and as a producer and singer it strengthens my arrangement skills. I’m constantly testing the limits of my sound to make me a better artist overall.
Our one last big announcement is that Kaay has been accepted to, and is officially a member of Timbaland's Beatclub! Beatclub is considered "the premier global marketplace that connects the music creator community with record labels, music publishers, film & tv, brands, content creators, and independent artists." TheMSQshop is getting the exclusive to release this information to the public via Producer of the Week, which is right now! Her beat store is in the works and coming soon as well, but she is still available and working on projects as we speak.
Keep up with Kaay Taurus on all platforms – @kaaytaurus
Written by Vy Truong, @avocavy on IG
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