Radical fans have Girl Radical ready to take the world by storm. 2014 is starting off with a bang for this high energy band! They are set to perform on LIVE on January 24th at the JBF Pre-Grammy Party. In an exclusive interview with Celebrity Teen Scoop, they also dish about being mentored by two music icons and how they spend their down time, and their musical style. In addition, they’ve been working on new songs for this year so stay tuned for BIG things from this power packed musical group!
CTS: Please give us a little background on your group. There are 11 of you right? How did you all connect?
Darina:We all became members in different ways, some auditioning and others being recruited. Now we’re practically sisters! Yes, there are 11 of us, and we all come from different backgrounds and cover soooo many styles and flavors! NEVER a dull moment!
Nyla: We were all discovered in different ways – some saw flyers, some were auditioned by word of mouth or friends of friends. It’s kind of remarkable that JC and Jimmy were to assemble all of us the way they did!
Kota: Jimmy and JC held a series of auditions and pieced us together like a puzzle! I was actually brought in through a mutual songwriting friend of mine and Jimmy’s, and I introduced them to Nyla, who I knew from before Girl Radical!
Meeghan: The only two people that knew each other before the group are Nyla and Kota, but the rest of us didn’t know each other until our first dance rehearsal for Girl Radical. JC and Jimmy had an auditioning process and we all auditioned, but we never met until our first official dance rehearsal.
Chase: With 11 girls it’s easy to find someone you connect to. We are all actually very different with lots of personalities, but opposites attract so we all get along!
Julez: JC Chasez and Jimmy Harry brought us all together last year. The first day of rehearsal was the first time I met any of the girls, but we got close very quickly!
Alex: Yes, we’re 11 girls! We bonded at our first rehearsal a little over a year ago, and it was like we were sisters overnight! The connection was natural because we were all singers and dancers with other similar shared interests. We’re on this journey together and no one understands what we’re going through better then each other!
Aniyah: We are a totally diverse group. We all came together collectively from different ethnic backgrounds, musical backgrounds, and many other influences to create a sound that is very unique. I think we connect because of our love for music, and this allows us to understand each other on different levels.
CTS: What’s your musical style? Any musicians that influence your music?
Nyla: My personal style when it comes to music is pretty eclectic. While musicians like Lauryn Hill, and Janelle Monae influence me, you can also find me inspired by artists like Jeff Buckley, Mutemath, and James Blake. Music from the soul hits hard for me! 🙂
Julez: Michael Jackson and Freddy Mercury are my vocal gods! However my music is influenced by artists like Sheryl Crow, Alanis Morissette, early Shakira, John Mayer, Norah Jones, Michelle Branch, Amy Winehouse…
Chase: I would say that my musical style is very theatrical. I went to a performing arts high school where I studied musical theater. This is my first time singing pop so it’s been fun!
Kota: Girl Radical is definitely pop, influenced highly by groups like Spice Girls, etc. I myself am the “rocker” of the group and take influence from bands like Paramore and Evanescence.
Darina:I’m mainly hip-hop and R&B! I love everyone from Beyonce, Janet, Jill Scott, India Arie, and Jhene Aiko to artists like Adele, Joss Stone, Ellie Goulding, and Lana Del Rey!
Alex: I’m a huge country fan! I grew up listening to country and spent years writing and performing my own country pop music. I’m hugely influenced by my favorites including Carrie Underwood, Taylor Swift, Keith Urban, Faith Hill, Martina McBride, Lady Antebellum, Rascal Flatts, Miranda Lambert…just to name a few 🙂
Aniyah: My style is a mix between R&B and hip-hop, and I am influenced by people like Janet Jackson, Beyonce, Aaliyah, Rihanna, Toni Braxton, and Mya! As a group, our style is pop!
Meeghan: Girl Radical is a pop group and we all take inspiration from different people, but of course we must mention ‘NSYNC! Duhh. Haha. Whenever we carpool, one ‘NSync song must be played…but it’s usually more than one. We look up to the great pop icons like the Spice Girls, Britney, JT, Beyonce, Rihanna, and Katy Perry. However, we’re not striving to be the next Spice Girls or next “something” – we’re striving to be the first Girl Radical.
CTS: Do you all come from a singing background?
Meeghan: Most of us have had singing experience before, such as Kota and me who had individual music careers that started before Girl Radical. However some of us are more dancers than singers or actors, so our group has a variety of talents and I think that’s what makes us so great and so unique. We have something different to offer the world.
Kota: Each of us has different strengths and different backgrounds! Some of us are stronger singers, some are stronger dancers, and even actors! That’s what makes us so strong as a super group!
Aniyah: I think all of us have dipped into many different branches of entertainment like singing, dancing, and acting, and our versatility is a strength when we come together as a group.
Julez: Some of us have a dance, acting, instrumental background in addition to being singers. It’s what makes the group so unique!
Nyla: Not all of us come from a singing background per se, but without a doubt we all come from a performance background whether its dancing, acting or singing.
Darina: MOST of us but a few of us are dancers first (including me!)
Alex: The majority of us do. Some of us were solely dancers. Some of us both.
Chase: Not all of us come from a singing background but most of us do. I have more of a dance background along with some of the other Radicals.
CTS: Tell us about your holiday song, Santa (Bring Me My Baby). How did you come up with the idea to do a holiday song?
Kota: Jimmy and JC asked us to send in ideas for a Christmas song, and Rosie and I actually sent them two of our original songs, and JC and Jimmy ended up piecing them together with parts they had written also! It came together perfectly as a collaborative effort!
Meeghan: It was actually sprung from Kota’s Christmas song and JC and Jimmy used parts of it and wrote around it with the help of another song of Rosie’s. It’s so cool to be able to say we have an original Christmas song instead of a cover of a Christmas song, and the music video was so much fun to make. It’s probably my favorite Radical music video 🙂
Chase: Santa bring me baby is super catchy! One of my new favorite holiday songs! JC asked the group if we would want to do a Christmas song we all were super excited about it. I thought we were going to do a cover so when I heard we were doing an original I was even more thrilled.
Darina: It’s super fun catchy and to me sounds like a classic! Very excited for everyone to hear this one!
Alex: We wanted to do something special for our fans! We’ve only been together 1 year and our fans have been the absolute best!!
Aniyah: The song was actually written by two of our very own, Kota and Rosie, with a bit of help from JC and Jimmy! I personally love this song and think it is so fun. It’s catchy and so different from all the other christmas songs out there, and it was also so much fun to record and film for our video.
CTS: How did you celebrate the holidays? What’s one of your favorite holiday traditions?
Julez: Usually we have a huge Colombian party complete with empanadas, games, music (usually provided by me lol!). In Latin American countries we open presents on Christmas Eve and this year since it was just my mom, dad, and me, we decided to play Parcheesi. Every time someone got a piece in that person could choose to either give a present or open one 🙂 It was so fun!
Aniyah: I celebrate the holidays with my family! On Christmas we usually open up presents early in the morning and then we make breakfast and watch all of the basketball games that come on. At the end of the day we all watch a movie and just spend time together. One of my favorite christmas traditions is when my mom, my little sister and I bake cookies and leave them out for santa!
Nyla: I celebrated Christmas with my family. A tradition that my family has is a gift exchange similar to white elephant except the gifts consist of things you find in your house. As you can imagine, the gifts can get pretty hilarious. As for the New Year, I got to spend mine in Chicago this time around!
Kota: One of my family’s traditions is a little different than most! I’m originally from New Mexico, where people traditionally put up “luminarias” which are bags with candles in them that line their house and yard, along with or instead of regular Christmas lights. I love doing this each year because it reminds me of being back in New Mexico with my entire huge crazy family!
Darina: Everyone comes to my house on Christmas and we share gifts, sing, dance, and eat LOTS of food!!
Alex: I always celebrate the holidays with my family! I’m such a family girl! For Christmas and New Year’s my family always throws huge parties at our home. I absolutely love being surrounded by all my loved ones during the holidays 🙂
Chase: I celebrate the holidays with my family. We all get together and do a secret Santa gift trade! Then we have a big family meal together.
CTS: What’s it like to work with music icons JC Chasez and Jimmy Harry? What have you learned from them?
Darina: RIDICULOUSLY AMAZING!!! Still surreal for me, but at the same time they have embraced us and they teach and love us so much that it already feels like we’re family. I’ve learned different techniques for singing in the studio and how to protect my voice, and developed an even stronger work ethic than I had before the group.
Meeghan: It’s so cool to have JC and Jimmy mentor us. They’ve been in the business for a while and they’ve experienced so much, so being able to learn from them and be guided by them is so awesome. Both JC and Jimmy will give us tips on how to breathe correctly or how to easily hit low or high notes on songs. And the best part is that they’re always looking out for our best interests, which JC is particularly sensitive to as an artist who has been in our shoes before. They both want the best for us and we’re all so grateful to be given this opportunity to work with them.
Kota: It’s still amazing and surreal working with JC and Jimmy! We learn from them everyday, and it’s always exciting!
Alex: It’s a dream working with JC and Jimmy!! Every time I’m in the studio with them I have to pinch myself! JC shares what he’s learned from his ‘NSync days such as things for us to be prepared for, singing tips, how to properly care for our voices and throats, and how to correctly warm up before a studio session. Most importantly he’s taught us the importance of respecting one another and working as a team, and he leads by example. Jimmy is a pure genius in the studio! He’s worked with the greats and it’s an honor to be working with him.
Aniyah: It’s amazing! They have so much wisdom and so many pointers about the industry. They give such sound advice and they are truly pros at what they do. It is such a blessing to be able to work and be a part of the team. Something I have learned from them is to be patient!
Nyla: It’s an amazing experience for sure. I am always so impressed by how how involved they are. They put 100% into what they do and we’ve definitely all become a family. I have learned so much from them ranging from life experiences to tips that they give us in the vocal booth or during rehearsals. They are truly great guys.
Julez: It’s a dream come true. They are amazing people and incredible talents. The first time I was in the studio with them JC was singing the lines to me, and I would just about die every time. I could not believe JC Chasez was singing like right there in front of me! They’ve taught me to stop second guessing myself so much and have fun with the music.
Chase: It has been a dream working with Jimmy and JC. They are such pros in this field, so to be mentored by two of the best in the business is unbelievable. They are so humble and down to earth in person, and they make us feel very comfortable!
CTS: How about downtime? What are some of your favorite hobbies?
Chase: My favorite hobby is dance! I used to dance over 20 hours a week. Now that I’m older I don’t have that luxury so when I get a ballet class in I love it!
Nyla: When I’m not doing music, I’m usually either playing a board game, being crafty, catching a movie, or playing Candy Crush… (I’m addicted)
Alex: During our time off you’ll usually find me and Jessica eating chocolate and having dance parties in my foyer!
Aniyah: I love shopping of course!!! lol I also love makeup, photography and fashion
Julez: I write a lot. I practice piano, and I love to create art. My dad and I have a Colorado lifestyle company and we design all sorts of cool things! Anything you can think of from stickers to socks to magnets and wall clocks, etc. I also design jewelry and I’m getting into designing clothes 🙂 Anyone who knows me knows I’m a fashion addict.
Darina: I obviously LOVE to dance, I also love running, swimming, musical theater and going to the movies!
Meeghan: Some of my favorite hobbies are blogging (I have my own blog at www.meeghanhenry.com) and photography and shopping! Haha. But mostly I just love hanging out with my friends and having a good time; it never really matters what we do. And when we can all get together, the Radicals try to hang out as much as possible, and THAT will always be a great feat because we all live so far away from each other.
Kota: We each are so different and have different interests! I’m really into fashion and like to make YouTube videos for my wardrobe channel, SteamfaerieTV!
CTS: Do you have a special message for your fans?
Kota: THANK YOU for ALL of the support! You guys are AMAZING and we appreciate every picture you send us, every tweet, every comment, EVERYTHING! You’re part of the Radical family and we couldn’t do it without you!
Darina: I truly love and appreciate you guys. Every time I get any messages or comments from you all, they make so HAPPY and you guys put a smile on my face and push me to work harder and get better!
Alex: Where do I begin?! Our Radical fans are the absolute BEST!!! Radicals, I can’t wait to take over the world with you all! Xxx Alex Rad
Nyla: Yes! I am so amazed and thankful at the amount of love you all give us! It’s so fun waking up and seeing new fan art you have created or wishing us a good day. None of it goes unnoticed, so thank you!
Aniyah: I am so in love with you guys! You guys are amazing and thank you so much for all of your support. It is truly appreciated.
Julez: Thank you for support and your love, we can’t do this without you. So thank you!
Chase: I want my fans to know that I’ve read every single tweet I have received from them. I feel like I know them even though we haven’t met in person, and the fact that our fans take time out of their day to tweet us or make collages of us melts my heart.
Meeghan: Our Radicals have been absolutely amazing and so supportive. Thank you to all the Radicals who have stuck with us from the beginning and believe in us. We’re so excited to have you as part of our Radical family and we can’t wait to see you hopefully at a live show soon!
CTS: What’s up next for you?
Meeghan: 2014 is the year of Girl Radical so we are already starting the year off with numerous dance rehearsals for our very first live performance at the JBF Pre-Grammy Party on January 24th! We’re so pumped and we’re ready. Watch out, world. The Radicals are coming!
Aniyah: This month we will be performing at a Pre-Grammy Party for the Jackie Boyz which is soooo exciting!!! I definitely cannot wait for this moment! And as for the rest of the year, we will be making and releasing new music!
Kota: Taking over the world in 2014!!! We’ll be performing live for a Pre-Grammy party this month and are excited to be prepping for that!
Darina: The Pre Grammy party! MOST excited about that!!!
Alex: We’re getting ready for our live performance at the JBF pre Grammy party in January!!
Julez: We are getting ready to perform at the Jackie Boyz pre Grammy party at the end of the month and recording new music!
Nyla: We have the showcase coming up which means rehearsals are on their way! Other than that we’re going to be hard at work in the studio finishing up some songs we have been working on.