QUIÑ embodies the term “fantasy soul” in all facets of her life, from the music down to her heart. If you’ve had the pleasure of meeting the Los Angeles native, you almost immediately feel the aura she brings. This is an individual who radiates beauty from the inside out, exuding love and positivity on all those she cross paths with. And when it comes to her music, we simply can’t get enough.
The Los Angeles native proudly hails from Pasadena, growing up in a musically-inclined household where dad played multiple instruments and her mother danced. At an early age, she was exposed to the studio and quickly fell in love with the environment — eventually discovering her own talents behind the mic. Being able to freely create art through sound isn’t just a dream come true for Quin, it’s her one true love.
While it may have seemed like a long shot to top her previous EPs, GALACTICA and DREAMGIRL, Lucid arrived and sweeped fans off their feet. The seven-track project is medicine for the soul, a transformative body of work she is beyond proud to deliver. Of course, “Mushroom Chocolate” featuring her boyfriend 6lack became a standout record, embodying the definition of true love at its finest.
Most recently, Quin also spoke at a girls empowerment conference named GirlSpace Compton. Ultimately, she hopes her own life experiences will inspire the youth to chase their dreams and go after what the unthinkable. Flaunt Mag caught up with Quin in downtown Los Angeles over a joint from @gascola, just a few days before her beach clean-up in Santa Monica.
When I heard your new project Lucid, I was like “yes, I need this!”
It’s medicine for sure. Honestly, it’s my medicine and I’m so grateful I’m able to share it. Because it heals me first and through that, it does what it does. The feedback I’ve been getting has been so specific and inspiring because it’s been nothing but “I was going through a lot of this and listening to your music really helped with this.” Or “I was straight up in the hospital in physical pain and your music made me feel better.” That’s the stuff I live for.
I’m always crying because my fans send me the craziest, sweetest messages. I read them all. They’re so specific to who I am, I feel really confident about the fact I’m being myself and showing myself through my music so clearly. When my fans reach out, they know what to tell me as if we already know each other. I feel I’ve been myself more than ever before. I fuck with who I am right now. It’s been a journey meeting myself through music and seeing who I am.
Every single project has always been me, but Lucid is me at this age right now. I have to accept that I’m experiencing a fairytale, and that’s okay. To accept it instead of getting in my way all of the time or blocking any blessings that are here for me. This is the life where I get to experience true love, through all areas of my life. In my life right now, I’m in all healthy situations. Sometimes it’s hard to process because it seems too good to be true.
That’s hard for me too, to just accept the good things happening.
Yes, accept it. Work with it. Take the help that’s around you because the people that are in your life are there to support you, because you support them. I’ve been grasping that. Really, I’ve been about family. Straight up family because I need to be a clear vessel for things to come through me, so that I can do my job. In order to do so, I need to run away. I need to be with my mom. I need to go home and lay in her lap for a while.
I’ve been really about making sure that I spend that time for real, not just talk about. For example right after this, I’m going to visit my favorite closest cousin of mine. Every time we’ve seen each other, it’s been a holiday. But this is the cousin I was doing magic shows with, back when we were kids. For the family: putting on full-on shows, making tickets, all that. This is my roll dog! Because it’s his birthday, I asked “Dustin, what are we doing?” He’s like “I’ma be in Santa Fe.” I said “I’m coming over.” We always talk about it, but just get the ticket though. It’s been exciting to be around my family, soaking that up more than I have.
Was there a time where you were distant from them?
No because I’ve always been close to my sisters, but I never made it a specific goal of mine. Because I live so close to my mom — she lives in Altadena, I live out here — I started to notice that I could even go a couple of weeks without seeing her. I realized “you know what, there’s no need for that.” I could go see you on a Sunday, I’m trippin’. I caught myself slipping a couple of times. I don’t want to live like that. I’m trying to come over. I want to start creating things with my mom and my sisters.
Was Lucid hard to record at all? With it being so vulnerable.
It was actually really easy. All those songs were the easiest songs to write, they just came out. “Lucid,” those words flew out. The melody of that little lullaby, it forced those words out of me. “7th Heaven,” it was clear. “Calling” was so easy. All of them were equally like whoa. That was a blessing right there. It was the production that took a minute to perfect. This is the first project that I really went in on the producing with my friends, and we got it to be perfect.
So you produced too? How was that?
It was fun because it’s me and my boys. I get to move around sounds. It took a lot of hours and patience, but it was cool to be able to get that side out of me. Previously I’m just like “okay these songs are good” — and they were. I love them for that. But I felt I had time to do what I wanted to do, so why wouldn’t I? So I took my time. I ended up meeting up with No I.D. because I was putting it on hold for a second, I felt something was missing. I ended up having a week with No I.D., he’s like “what you working on?” I said “man…” Because I was going in trying to make new stuff. But hold on, where do we begin with our partnership?
It turned into “let’s listen to what you have right now, that you’re so frustrated about.” Because I don’t want to talk about it. I don’t want to listen to them right now. Something’s brewing in the pot and I’m trying to figure out what it is, and that’s what it was. We linked up. Chuck Inglish was there, my entire band. We all went in, it was fun. Then we mixed it. When there’s a level of satisfaction, that’s what perfection is to me. I put my sister on it, which was my favorite part. She’s the poem in the first song.
That’s the shit that got to me!
Yes! She goes by Infinity, that’s the baby sister. I named her when I was seven, her name’s Blair. It was the easiest thing though: my mom’s like “alright Bianca, gotta pick a B name.” Because it’s Bianca, Bailey, and Blaire. I’m like “Blair!” Blair was a little friend of mine that I had in kindergarten who I adored. I always loved that her name was Blaire, I loved everything about her.
Doesn’t kindergarten feel so long ago?
It really does. It’s like bittersweet, I miss it. I miss being a baby sometimes, I was just thinking about that.
When I see Lucid, I think of acid. Any connection there at all?
Honestly, this time no. Not to me, but it’s connected in a way to where acid is the ticket to other dimensions. Other flavors that you can’t really see with the normal eye. In a way, they’re similar because I hope that you’re able to transport to wherever you want. Also I’ve never been on acid and listened to Lucid, but imagine that. It’s more so for me being the DreamGirl, learning through my dreams. Being able to lucid dream, wondering what’s that? Why am I able to do that? Learning what that is in my own head since I was a baby.
Lucid came from DreamGirl, which was the second project. Immediately then, I knew that Lucid would be the name of the next one. I didn’t necessarily know what songs would be on there or anything, but I saw the story unfolding. Lucid is heaven on earth. You can actually control your dreams, but don’t waste your time dreaming away. Dream, plot it out, then come back and do it. That’s how you make them useful.
What are you dreaming?
That’s a really good question. All types of things, my dreams are like movies. Different genres. Not so many nightmares, I used to get them bad. There might be scary moments happening, but I’m not actually afraid — that’s how I know it’s not a nightmare. “Okay, this is just a mission dream.” There’s the world-ending dreams, which are all kind of similar. Then you have the normal play dates. [chuckles] My dreams are all over the place, they go far out. Sometimes they leave me sleepy, I wasn’t able to get actual rest.
What’s it like recording “Mushroom Chocolate” with your partner?
We didn’t necessarily record it together in the same space, but it’s totally a blessing because you know you’re doing what you’re supposed to be doing. This is our purpose and we have to join forces every now and then. It’s automatic.
You guys have me wanting a boo!
Everybody says that! Let me tell you something: don’t go looking for that. [chuckles] I’m happy to be a good example of good and healthy love. But really, you have to make sure you’re your own best friend. Certain things… you start grabbing keys from the sky. Seriously. It might be something totally unexpected but when you’re looking for it, you’re wasting time because you’re supposed to be doing something else. Spend time on you, then watch what unfolds. That’s the fun part: when you really fuck with yourself, you’re like “oh I’m actually good forever.” Then tada! Anything could happen. [chuckles]
Best memory from that shoot?
Altogether, we had a bomb crew. It was pleasant to work with everybody. It was family, a lot of sisters. It felt good to be there all day. The most memorable part was the water at the end was 0°. I was in it, this was the last shot of the day. I was laughing so hard at the switch up because I have a BTS video of how cold it really was, it was so ugly. In my head, “that shit is about to look stupid because I’m cold as fuck.” I looked back like “wait a minute, who is that?” [laughs] I wasn’t even mad. She did come through because that wasn’t me. I was cold as hell. I was shaking. I couldn’t even talk after, my body went into shock!
Was he cold?
No, that was different water. Earlier, the blue water wasn’t cold. I’m a cold person in general. I went in there, it was really cold outside. The water wasn’t heated, no sun at all. It was my Destiny’s Child survivor moment. You gon’ turn it on or what? [chuckles] It just came on, thank God. That’s my favorite part though, I made that shit worth it.
What’s you and 6lack’s ideal day off?
Going to get some crab legs. There’s this one in the valley, bomb. Wake up in the morning honestly on a good good day, I really want some crab legs. Let’s go please. Come home, finish our Star Wars marathon because we started from the beginning. We be chillin’, or straight up go to the beach. That’s a good one.
Which beach are you hitting?
If I were to go to the beach, I’m going to Malibu. Not going to lie though, my perfect day is going to the Santa Monica pier and getting on all the little rides. Doing that whole thing and being by the water, that’s fun. I love doing that on a random day, wake up like “I’m trying to go on a little roller coaster.” Or w’re going to Six Flags! My idea of fun is big ass roller coasters. Seriously, I’m trying to go on a rollercoaster tour in every city I’ve been to. I’m always like “where are the roller coasters?”
What are you most excited for going on tour with Snoh Aalegra?
Oh my gosh! I love her. It’s two perfect forces combined. I’m really grateful that I could be a part of her moment right because it’s poppin’ and we love her. I’m excited to do these songs live. I’m excited to share the stage with Snoh. This is just the beginning of my journey, let’s see what happens. I’m going with the flow and I’m happy.
How was speaking at GirlSpace Compton? Why is it important for you to empower women?
Girlspace Compton, I want to always be there to support them whenever I possibly can because I honestly love talking to kids. It serves a big portion of healing for me, being around that energy and understanding what their realities are these days. I’m a big sister, so it’s already inside of me to be the big sister to everybody. It’s easy for me to pull up and talk to them because I didn’t have anybody to talk to. Yes I had my mom, but I didn’t have a big sister. It was just me and them. I’ve been through things that could really help girls understand themselves a little more, or want to understand themselves more. I’m here for broken hearts honestly. If I can help in anyway I possibly can: talking to girls with Jackie, kicking it with them and singing with them. That’s my idea of fun, genuinely knowing I can help.