Featured Shirley's Temple

Kaash Paige Explains How She Linked With Moneybagg Yo, What It’s Like Working With Alicia Keys

December 23, 2022

Read the full interview on AllHipHop.com!

Kaash Paige is on her way to becoming the biggest artist in the world. The Dallas, Texas native stands and shines in her own lane, with her own unique voice, style, swag, and sound that fans can’t get enough of. And if you’re a fan of Kaash’s mesmerizing vocals on Don Toliver’s “Euphoria,” there’s a lot more where that came from.

With 3.6 million monthly listeners on Spotify alone, Kaash Paige returns with her highly-anticipated new album titled S2ML (Soundtrack 2 My Life). The 12-track project is spearheaded by lead singles “24 Hrs” featuring Lil Tjay and “Miss My Dawgs” featuring 6LACK. This arrives on the heels of 2019’s Parked Car Convos, home to her viral smash “Love Songs.”

Beyond the fire music, it’s her down-to-earth personality and contagious energy that organically spreads love to the masses, no matter which part of the world she’s in. Most recently, she blessed London at Wireless Festival, getting the most fan love she’s ever received at a show.

On the 45th episode of Shirley’s Temple, Kaash Paige discusses why she stopped smoking, getting a crib back home in Dallas, mental health in the music industry, going through 10 managers, competing track against Sha’Carri Richardson and more.

AllHipHop: I know you haven’t been smoking, how long has it been now?

Kaash Paige: It’s only been 7 days, but I’ve been the best I’ve been honestly. Weed’s not really doing nothing for me right now. I used to smoke every single second of the day, and I wouldn’t be as productive. As far as singing, it would cloud on my lungs too.

When I went to rehearsals earlier today, because I got an hour set, I’m like damn, I can actually breathe and stay on stage. Man, I gotta keep this up, and my clarity’s been way better.

But the thing is, if I was just a producer and I didn’t sing, I think I’d be gassing all the time. Sometimes it’s super harsh on my voice. I love getting high, but I still do shrooms.

AllHipHop: How were you able to just stop? Because that takes discipline.

Kaash Paige: I’ve been saying that for a long time though, then I’ll get around somebody and I’ll start smoking. With me, I’m entering a different stage in my life right now. I’m about to move back to Dallas.

AllHipHop: Are you?

Kaash Paige: Yeah, the crib I got is f###### sick. I just got it today, it’s pretty nice.

AllHipHop: Congratulations!!

Kaash Paige: I appreciate that. If you want to come out there, let me know. I’ll show you the house.

AllHipHop: I remember you telling me you want to move back to Dallas.

Kaash Paige: I did. My life likes to repeat itself, but in different ways. Whenever I went back to Dallas that time, it was because I didn’t know nobody in LA. Whenever I got back to Dallas, then I got a call in right to LA. Now I’m living in Hollywood Hills, I’m linking up with everybody. Now, it’s draining. Everybody in LA wants to be a star. There’s so many stars amongst stars. It’s exciting, it’s so many opportunities out here, but everybody in their life has a different chapter. I’m creating this new chapter in mine.

AllHipHop: You used to run track. Do you exercise now?

Kaash Paige: I don’t really exercise now. Whenever I get back out there to Dallas, I’m a purchase a bike. I was running miles every day, then I stopped because I was gassing before my miles too. [laughs]

AllHipHop: I got high one time before a run, it was the worst run of my life. Time was going so f###### slow.

Kaash Paige: Exactly, you’re ready to go home. Damn.this is the first lap and I’m ready to go. Because you’re geeked and you’re like, why am I doing this?

I ran track, I wasn’t fast, but I was so bad they put me in the 400.

Damn, they wanted to see you fail. The 400, that’s the horrible f###### race. Because I’m a sprinter. Whenever my coach will put me in a 400, I’m like damn you a hoe. You a hoe bro. You know I can’t run this s###. You see me in track class getting dusted by everybody, and you over here trying to put me in the 400. Because I ran 4 x 100 meters relay, 110-meter hurdles, then 200-meter dash.

AllHipHop: So you’ve always been popping?

Kaash Paige: Yeah I guess. I’ve always wanted to fit in. I could always adapt to any crowd, adapt to anybody literally. Middle school, high school, can hang out with anybody.

AllHipHop: Shirley’s Temple has a focus on mental health. How are you doing?

Kaash Paige: I feel like I’ve been through a lot. What everybody has to realize is a lot of this s###’s temporary. A lot of emotions are temporary. When we’re sad and we’re happy, we’re angry, it’s temporary. You’re not going to stay in that vibe. And if you are in that vibe, you need to be around people that can get you out of that. It’s hard to even say that sometimes because depression is real. I have this one saying I always say: it’s always a rainbow after every storm, no matter how much it rains. It’s always knowing that better days are coming.

AllHipHop: Now that you don’t smoke weed, what do you do to help your mental health?

Kaash Paige: Honestly, I would say creating music. I feel as if I create more songs now. I’m going in the studio, cutting about 4 records. Because we were sitting there, cut about one, smoke and be like “that s### hard bro.” Just be chillin’ and not really get to another song. Now, I have more creativity in my mind as far as energy to do that.

I’m going through this phase right now, my house is all boxed up and empty. You come back to the house like, damn, I just sleep here. It’s not a home anymore. Trying to figure out what I want to do is weird too, but I watched the Woodstock documentary last night. It was crazy. It was fire.

AllHipHop: Musicians are 3x more likely to experience anxiety or depression than the general public.

Kaash Paige: Of course, because you don’t know who’s really for you. You’re around so many different energies, you’re around so many different team members. Everybody has an opinion, and not everybody’s opinion can be trusted. You’re always pulled in so many different directions, then you don’t know who’s really your friend or who really has your best interest. I’ve been in so many different situations where I had to fire management. I probably had about 10 managers.

AllHipHop: You were with Roc Nation for a second right?

Kaash Paige: Yeah, Roc was a great situation though. In my mind, it was just a transition. I never want to be in the same place as I was last year. I’m always like that. A lot of people don’t f### with that because they say, “aw, you can switch up.” It’s not about me switching up, it’s about me wanting to be great. It’s about me wanting to grow up. Who wants to be the same person they were yesterday? That makes zero sense.

AllHipHop: This is why I love your energy. How do you know who to trust?

Kaash Paige: You know what’s so crazy? I used to always think about, who can I trust? That’s so much f###### energy. It’s so much energy. Damn, he was acting weird the other day. I don’t know if I can trust bro. Or she did this, I don’t know if I can trust her. That’s a lot of energy. You know what? You gon’ cut yourself off. I don’t even gotta cut you off. My prior managers, they cut themselves off recently. A lot of people cut themselves off out of my life.

It’s always what’s done in the dark that comes to the light. No matter what day and what time it is, it’s gonna happen. Don’t stress yourself out trying to figure out and find a problem. I was off shrooms the other day.

You know how whenever somebody wants to tell you something, and they’re like, “aw nevermind.” You’re like, what do you mean? You want to know it so bad. He said, “why the f### do you want to know it so bad? You didn’t even think about that 5 minutes prior to when they said that.”

You’re taking so much energy out of your mind and out of your time to figure out what’s about to be said, and who knows if it was negative or positive. Obviously you’re about to get into this mood now, or you’re about to go into this little conversation that you probably didn’t even care about. He said sometimes, we gotta not care. We gotta stay in our own energy.

AllHipHop: Do you believe in any religion?

Kaash Paige: I’m into spirituality. I’m not into religion though. I wasn’t raised in religion. My mom went to Catholic school. But our whole thing is: treat people how you want to be treated. I respect that. I don’t like dark ass energy. I’m only about light energy. I don’t judge nobody based on where you come from, what you do in your life. As long as you treat people how you want to be treated and live your true self, hey I love you and I respect you. Nobody’s better than anybody. Everybody’s so judgemental.

AllHipHop: I’m just like, be a good person.

Kaash Paige: Yeah, just be a good person. That’s not hard to do. And if you’re not a good person right now, that doesn’t mean you’ll never be a good person. You just need to grow up and figure something out.

AllHipHop: How was it celebrating two years of Teenage Fever? 

Kaash Paige: Man, I didn’t really celebrate it to be honest. One thing, I’ve never celebrated any drop. I haven’t been around people that celebrated with me. It’s more so when I got my plaques, they’re like “alright bet, cool. Let’s get some more.”

AllHipHop: I respect that.

Kaash Paige: Sometimes I respect it because it makes you go hard, but also it puts you in that mode where you don’t really appreciate anything. They don’t allow you to be in the moment. I’d get a plaque and m############ be like, “aw that s### fire. Let’s get another one.”

AllHipHop: How many plaques do you have now?

Kaash Paige: I have two. I’m trying to get my other plaques from RIAA, because I was a part of Moneybagg’s s###. I was the intro to his album.

AllHipHop: “Memphganistan” is hard!!

Kaash Paige: “All my n*ggas gangsta.” We performed in Columbus, Ohio. Moneybagg’s hard.

AllHipHop: I was so proud to see your name on the album. It’s hard to stand out in the music industry.

Kaash Paige: I would say that, but also it’s about timing. I’ve only put out two projects. I can’t expect everybody in the world to know about me yet because I still gotta build on my catalog. It used to bother me at first, but that’s because I soaked up the industry’s value. When you drop a song, you’re like, “damn, it ain’t going #1.” Now you think that you’re not successful or nobody f#### with you. In reality, it’s not that. Anything that you put out is a success. Anything you make is a success.

You can’t soak up other people’s values and morals. It’s more so letting it be known that it’s patience, and this s###’s a marathon. When you’re gonna be the biggest artist in the world, that shouldn’t don’t come too easy.

AllHipHop: How did the Moneybagg Yo situation happen?

Kaash Paige: It was with Skydiddy, his engineer had reached out to me. Him and Baroline reached out to me. They said “yo, we want you to be a part of Moneybagg project. Where you at?” I said s### I’m in LA. They’re like, “pull up.” Mind you, the song never sounded like that and I didn’t even know it was going to be the intro. It was a whole different beat and everything, I put the “all my n*ggas gangsta.” Alright cool. Then when they sent it to me, they said “oh s###, you the intro.” I’m like damn, that s### fire. Same thing that happened with Don [Toliver] and Travis [Scott]. Alicia Keys, everybody.

AllHipHop: Moments like “Euphoria” where Don hears the single, he wants it for his own s### and puts Travis on it.

Kaash Paige: That was such a big decision in my life too. That was supposed to be for my project, but I said it’s all good, I’ll make more songs. It was the Texas connect, it made sense. I’m from Dallas, they’re from Houston, alright cool. That put me onto the Cactus Jack fans.

AllHipHop: Even with the Moneybagg song, did you gain his fanbase? Did you see your numbers?

Kaash Paige: Honestly, I don’t even f###### know. Everybody said, “this song should have been longer. This is s### for that.” People were mad that it wasn’t longer, but they’re like, “this s###’s hard!” I was getting really great feedback from it though.

AllHipHop: How was working with Alicia Keys?

Kaash Paige: It was so crazy because I’m really goofy and I just cracked jokes. When I walked in, she was playing the piano. I said, damn, I’m walking to a wedding? She started laughing. Man, this s### is crazy. I’m thinking it’s going to be on some chill s###. But no, she really plays the keys 24/7. It was a dope ass vibe.

I already had my verse cut. S###, I’m going to pull up my s### ready. F### that, I ain’t finna pull up and cut s###. I’m pressing play. Swizz showed me hella love. I was so in my mind about what they would think sounded good, let me already go ahead and cut it. So whenever I get there, they can tell me what they like and don’t like. Alicia was like, “nah this is crazy!” We have videos I never posted, but we turnt as hell. So f###### turnt in the studio where we heard that s###.

AllHipHop: Were you nervous going in?

Kaash Paige: Nah. I’ve met a lot of people. I’ve been in the room with Marilyn Manson. I’ve been in multiple rooms with Beyonce. It’s been a lot.

AllHipHop: Anyone in the music industry that influenced you?

Kaash Paige: A lot of people. Nirvana, Flatbush Zombies, SZA. Old SoundCloud SZA fasho. Erykah Badu is one of them. Drake, The Weeknd. Who else? I’m really a huge Gorillaz fan, I love Gorillaz. You heard me listening to Linkin Park —

AllHipHop: She was listening to Linkin Park on her phone in the green room!

Kaash Paige: [laughs] I love alternative rock. It’s super vulnerable. I feel as if when you mix R&B, hip hop, with alternative rock and so many different genres, it feels euphoric. It feels like you’re expressing something that nobody’s heard before too.

AllHipHop: You dropped “Miss My Dawgs” with 6LACK. Was the “Love Songs” remix so fire, y’all had to run it back or what?

Kaash Paige: Yeah, I personally love 6LACK. He’s somebody in the industry that’s literally real. He’s super real. Whenever he’s around you, he won’t have his phone near him. He’ll leave his phone far away and just be in a conversation with you, so I really respect him a lot.

AllHipHop: And that was him hitting you to get on the remix, right?

Kaash Paige: Yeah, he added me on Twitter like, “where you at? What we doing?” I’m like, oh s###, wassup? It popped off, everybody’s like “aw, this is crazy!” I remember I was leaving Genius whenever he did that, it was a big moment for me in that era. When I was 18 and “Love Songs” dropped, I didn’t fully get to appreciate it because I was taking s### so personal. I remember telling my label, telling everybody “this is going to be a big song.” This is going to be a big song.” Everybody’s like, “eh cool. We don’t really want to drop it. We don’t want to put any money in it.” I said you’re going to regret that s###.

Then it popped off and everybody’s like, “I’ve always known this is going to be the biggest record ever.” And I’m 18, I just got out of high school. So in my mind, I’m like you fake as f###. I haven’t been in the industry, so I’m not understanding this is how the industry works. You gotta play the cards that you’re dealt with. In my mind, I was so personal with everything. I didn’t want to do nothing for the record because I’d known that people didn’t believe in it.

AllHipHop: First of all, how was it signing a major label deal at 18? What’s going through your head?

Kaash Paige: Proving a point. I didn’t take my SAT, my ACT, nothing. I remember at Thanksgiving telling my family, I’m going to be in the music industry. I’m a be huge. Not my immediate family, but my cousins said “I think you should stick to track. I don’t see that happening, you’ll be better off being a doctor in college.” I said mom, we should leave. We left. S###, they hit me up all the time now. I forgive them because I put that battery in my back to prove a point to them.

AllHipHop: How did it feel to put out “24Hrs” with Lil Tjay?

Kaash Paige: It was fire because he was the first artist to bring me on tour. We went on tour last year, it was pretty dope. It was dope because his fans really love music. They were really supportive of every artist that he was bringing out. This artist named Rosandra, other up and coming artists from different cities. He always had a great crowd, they didn’t really care if they didn’t know you or not.

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