DROKU: At what age did you start singing?
KIM: I started singing in the 4th grade, when I was a part of a
Christian choir. I don’t think anyone really knew I could sing until
high school though, when I joined a group and we performed all over
California at various venues.
DROKU: How did you get your start as an artist?
KIM: Honestly, entertainment was just part of something I did in
private. It was just a hobby. I just loved singing, dancing, rapping,
etc. as a kid, and I never really took it seriously until people started
noticing. I guess it was all the girls in high school that really
pushed me into this career. Girls would always ask me to sing for them,
and I haven’t been able to shut up ever since.
DROKU: Who encouraged you to start singing and who has been your biggest inspiration as singer, songwriter?
KIM: I have a true love for music. I literally get physically ill if I
am deprived of my favorite music. I just grew up mimicking the artists
that were playing on the stereo at my friend’s homes, and I fell in love
with R&B/Soul music… My biggest influences musically have always
been legends such as Donny Hathaway, Stevie Wonder, Marvin Gaye, Prince,
and Michael Jackson.
DROKU: What has been your favorite performance so far?
KIM: I always relish singing the national anthem every year at a Golden
State Warriors home game. I have been a die-hard Warriors fans since I
was old enough to walk, and to be able to sing at their games in such a
treat. Singing my heart out, in front of 20,000 people is a rush that
can never be replicated.
DROKU: Do you do music full time or do you have another job?
KIM: I’ve been lucky enough to do music full time. I’m not a wealthy
man by any stretch, but to be able to do what I love for a living is
truly a blessing.
DROKU: How do you practice your singing to continue to improve?
KIM: Honing your craft is so important. Singing is such a stress
reliever for me. If I’ve had a bad day, I lock myself in the bedroom,
blast a classic record, and sing till I’m sweaty and out of breath. As a
singer, you should constantly be trying to improve your range, lung
capacity, cleaning up your riffs and runs, and expanding your artistry
by immersing yourself in all genres of music.
DROKU: Who would you like to collaborate with that you haven't yet already?
KIM: There are dozens of artists, producers, and writers I’d like to
work with. Off the top of my head I’d love to sing a hook for Far East
Movement, rock a duet with Alicia Keys, and jump on a record produced by
DROKU: You're music video for "Hero" is currently playing on M-Net, how do you feel?
KIM: It’s an honor. I put my heart and soul into that record, and the
feedback has been so positive. I’m still not used to seeing myself on tv
DROKU: What are you working on now? (any album, singles or music being released?)
KIM: The next single is on it’s way shortly! It’s called “You Left Me
For That?”, and is completely different than anything I’ve ever done. It
was produced and co-written by my good friend David Kater, who has also
written for artists like Se7en and Wheesung. I can’t wait to release
the music video and show everyone what I’ve been cooking up.
DROKU: We heard you were leaking a new single every Monday, why did you decide to give out free downloads to all your followers?
KIM: I was going through my catalogue of songs one day, and realized I
had written and recorded more than 100 songs. There were certain records
I had been saving for the album, but I just felt like they needed to be
shared with the world immediately. What’s the point of having songs
I’ve written from the heart if they’re just going to sit in my iTunes?
So I decided to give them away for free. I can always make more records…
DROKU: Out off all your singles you have revealed to the public, which is your favorite and why?
KIM: I think my upcoming single “You Left Me For That?” is definitely
my favorite. It is a culmination of my favorite types of music fused
into one record. It basically embodies me as an artist. My fans are
gonna initially be a little shocked to see that the new single isn’t an
urban R&B record. I still left my soulful flavor on it, but it’s
totally different than anything I’ve ever done.
DROKU: Why did you try out for American Idol? How far did you expect to get and how far did you get?
KIM: I tried out for AI with very little expectations. It was such an
amazing experience that opened the door for me in this industry. I hate
to sound pessimistic, but I knew America would never vote for an Asian
to win the show, but I did the best I could and I loved every minute of
DROKU: How was your experience with "MBC Star Audition"?
KIM: It was awesome. I gained a whole new fan base in Korea, and I am
grateful to MBC for that. Korea is the motherland, and I want so badly
to be accepted by my brothers and sisters in Korea. I am so proud of my
Korean heritage, and it felt so good to be able to show what I could do
on a national platform.
DROKU: How was that audition different then your 'American Idol" audition?
KIM: It honestly wasn’t very different in terms of the process. I was a
nervous wreck during American Idol though. For the MBC audition I
didn’t have an ounce of nerves. I had already been through such an
experience and it was easy as pie.
DROKU: What do you want to accomplish in your music career? Why?
KIM: I just want to make timeless art. Immortality can be reached
through your legacy. When I’m gone, I would love for my music to keep my
memory alive. I would love for someone to hear one of my records years
from now and smile because it makes them reminisce over a past
experience of theirs. Somewhere along the way the music industry forgot
about creating classic records that would stand the test of time.
Nowadays all you hear is annoying repetitive songs that you hear 3 times
and you’re already sick of the record. That’s not the kind of artist I
want to be. I’m not out to make a quick buck. I want to live forever
through my music…
Be sure to check out Paul's YouTube page, Facebook page and follow the singer on Twitter. Also, his official website HERE.
PAUL KIM FUN QUESTIONS:
The first thing i do when i wake up is….Go
pee… Then check both my phones to see what calls I missed, because I
have to turn them on silent as a result of business calls at all hours
of the night from Asia and the East Coast.
The last thing i do before i sleep is…
Drink a protein shake and scarf down a Bacon Ultimate Cheeseburger…
Actually, it may sound cliché, but I have to say a prayer to God before
bed. I have so much to be thankful for, and without Him I am nothing.
My most prized possession is…My
songbooks. I have stacks of notebooks with all the songs I’ve written.
Sometimes I skim through the lyrics of all the poetry I’ve turned into
music, and I don’t even know where some of those concepts and words came
from. It’s almost like I was possessed during the process and someone
fed me the lyrics and melodies.
My biggest pet peeve is…
Mean and selfish people. Some people just go out of their way and
expend tons of energy to be mean, and ruin someone’s day. It serves zero
purpose in life. I also despise people who are solely out for their
own, and contribute nothing positive to society.
The celebrity i would like to meet is… Prince. That man is just pure musical genius. I totally have a man crush on him.
My favorite time of day is...Dinner time! Feeeeed meeeeee…
My ideal date would be…A
spontaneous trip somewhere exotic. I’d love to tell a woman that we’re
skipping the typical dinner and movie, and that the only thing she needs
to bring on our date is a passport. I’ll handle the rest.
My catchphrase would be....Bury your fears, and anything is possible.
The song that should play when i enter the room is… “Friday, Friday, gotta get down on Friday!” (Friday - Rebecca Black)
The best way to cheer me up when Im down is...Feeeeeeed meeeeee... I’ll eat anything; so long as it’s edible.