American Idol. Celebrity Fit Club. The View. Even though Kimberley Locke is constantly on television, she loves performing in dance clubs for the energy and morale boost that her enthusiastic dance music fans give. With remixes by Jason Nevins, Almighty, Bronleewe & Bose, and Scotty K, "Change," the leadoff single to her sophomore album Based On a True Story, will keep dancefloors buzzing for her next performance.
DJ Ron Slomowicz: So you have a new album coming out..
Kimberley Locke: I'm very excited. I guess I'm most excited because I have written songs on this album and I really put myself into this project. I had a lot more involvement than I did with the first one, so it makes it even sweeter.
RS: I guess one of the criticisms of American Idol is that
you're singing other peoples' music. Do you think with this album
that you'll totally step away from that and present yourself as the
artist that you are?
Kimberley Locke: Yes, I think definitely. I think this time around, my fans are going to see more of me. The fans are always looking for something really personal or something that they can latch on to that makes them feel like they know you a little bit better. Everything that I wrote about was personal experiences - things I've gone through and things I'm going through. It is hard coming out from American Idol when you sing covers because people get so used to you singing those covers, sometimes I wonder if they just wanted me to make an album with nothing but covers.
RS: What's an example of one of the songs that comes from a life
Kimberley Locke: The first single, "Change," was written towards the end of the project when I was working with Ty Lacy and Dennis Matkosky. I wrote that song for the album when I was actually at the end of a not-so-great relationship that I had been in. I was engaged to be married and it was perpetually getting worse, and by the time I wrote this song I was ready to make a change in my life, and that's what this song is all about. The song is about either you're going to change and we're going to fix this or I'm going without you and I'm making a change regardless. Currently in my life the song has a totally different meaning because, I'm doing Celebrity Fit Club and so it's about making a change in my life personally, just for me, moving into a different aspect of my career and taking a different outlook on my own personal life. That song is really special and everybody loves it, There's so many songs on the album and everybody wants me to pick my favorite. It's hard to pick a favorite and it's hard to just single out two or three songs because I put everything out there.
RS: "Change" is the first single, if you had to choose another
song on the album to be a number one hit, what do you think it would
Kimberley Locke: I would say "Friend Like You." It is one of my favorite songs on the album because it has a rock and R&B vibe and I think a lot of people can relate to that song. The hook is 'who needs an enemy when I've got a friend like you,' you know what I'm saying? That was one of the last songs that made it on the album. I was driving in my car and had this idea. I called the guys I was writing with, Damon Sharpe and Mark Feist, and told them to get to the studio. We wrote that song in just a couple of hours.
RS: "Change" is a pop song in its original form that you wrote
it. What was it like when you started hearing all the different dance
Kimberley Locke: The dance mixes are an extra thing that I really never thought about when making the music. They're a lot of fun because people call us and ask if they can do a remix on it and we're like 'sure.' It's so interesting to see how these different DJs interpret the song and what they come up with, because they're all so different. "Eighth World Wonder" had five different versions, so we put out a maxi-single because they were all so good. I think that's just a different element, not excluding any of my fans at all, trying to make sure that we cover all our bases. The remixes are fun because there's nothing like going to a club and seeing a video to the dance mix or just hearing it and seeing everybody dancing to it. It's like a totally separate experience from anything else.
RS: I heard that recently you performed at UCLA and did the
Almighty mix of the record.
Kimberley Locke: I did and they absolutely loved it. That was actually my first time performing that song live to the dance mix.
RS: When you do your shows around the country, is it harder to
perform the dance mixes than the original mixes?
Kimberley Locke: Actually no, I love performing the dance mixes. Sometimes it gets a little redundant to sing the album version over and over again. When I get to sing the dance mixes, I get excited because that means that more than likely the audience is going to be dancing and having a good time and that adds a totally different element to everything.
RS: You definitely give a lot to the fans in your shows. When
you walk in to a crowd, how do you gauge what they're going to be into
and how do you put on your show for them?
Kimberley Locke: That's really hard. I will say this, I do a lot of Gay Pride events during the summer, from like June to August. Hands down, I know those events are going to be my best events because the energy in the gay clubs or at the gay events is just out of control. They love me and they let it be known and it feels really good. Anytime I'm stuck in a rut, I'm like I need to do a gay club so I can get my morale boosted. When I walk off the stage from doing a show at a gay event, I just feel like I've conquered the world. It's always a party and it's always about the music, and I really do enjoy that. It's not to say that my other audiences aren't great but it's hit and miss, when you go and just do a concert or something like that you never know what you're going to get.