Interview: "65 Milligrams" - Cat Calabrese
First off, releasing over 10 singles in a year and a half is literally INCREDIBLE!! And this new chapter with your most recent single “65 Milligrams” did not disappoint, that’s for sure :) Can you take us through the writing process of this new track?
Cat: I appreciate that so much, thank you! It’s really cool to look back on when I first set myself on this schedule and to see the progress. I’m so happy you love the new song! It’s one of my favorites and I’m thrilled that people are connecting with it. I received an instrumental demo back in May 2021 for a prospective collaboration. I created the melody around the beat and once I had it in a good place, I started writing. I didn’t set out with the intention of writing about anxiety, but it just started flowing. My favorites songs are the ones that combine upbeat production with heavy hitting lyrics and I wanted to create with that intention. Also, I wanted to write about something real and honest and I wrote based on where my headspace was. The collaboration fell through, but I decided to take the melody/lyrics I had written and bring them to my producer and collaborator, DJ London Bridges, and we created an entirely new vibe which is what you hear now! It just goes to show that sometimes even though you don’t get what you originally planned for, you get something even better!
When did performing and songwriting become a passion of yours? Was it something you always knew you wanted to pursue eventually?
Cat: Music has always been a huge part of my life. I grew up playing piano and always loved to write. I would play around with writing my own lyrics to melodies of my favorite songs and wrote my first original when I was 13. However, I kept singing a secret from everyone and didn’t start sharing it until a few years ago. I was self-conscious about it for so long even though it was all I wanted to do. I’m so glad I finally was able to move past the fear and tap into the passion that was always pulling at my heart.
“65 Milligrams” has been described as a “driving-with-the windows-down track” and I couldn’t agree more! Do you have a favorite song by another artist that gives you that same feeling?
Cat: Thank you! And I have so many! One of my favorites to blast is “Heart Attack” by Demi Lovato. I often work on this song in my vocal lessons as well!
As someone who is also a huge advocate for mental health awareness, I seriously applaud you for your openness and vulnerability regarding the topic in your music! Did you find it difficult to talk about your personal struggles you’ve endured or was it in a way rewarding or therapeutic?
Cat: Thank you so much, I’m so happy to hear that you connect with it! From the beginning, vulnerability and my songs have always been one and the same. Music is where I go to work through issues; this entire journey for me started as a way to work through trauma, and sharing it felt really organic for me. I believe that music can’t be quality without vulnerability. If I can’t be honest through my music, what’s the point? Having that mindset made it natural and easy to tell my truth, and I’m so grateful it’s been received in the way that it has. When people thank me for sharing and tell me that they connect with my message, I know I’m doing something right.
If you could collaborate with any other artist, who would you pick and why?
Cat: Ariana Grande! Obviously she is an incredible vocalist, but since I’ve started my own music journey, I have a newfound appreciation for her writing ability and how she arranges and produces her vocals. She has such an incredible vision and ear for developing a song and layering complex harmonies and layers. Just to be in the studio with her to watch her mind work would be incredible and I would love to create with her!
I can’t wait to see what else this new chapter brings for you!! Any upcoming projects or new music you can talk about?
Cat: I can’t wait to share it with you! I have my eye on some collabs that I’ve been manifesting for a while and I am doing all I can to make them happen! I’ve got 2 more singles planned for 2022 and am also working on a larger project that I am so excited about; “65 Milligrams” is the introduction to it and I can’t wait to share the bigger story that it’s a part of!
Interviewed By Sarah Curry