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WPGM Commentary: Kaia Laurielle On The Making Of Her New EP ‘Waiting Room’

My name is Kaia Laurielle, I’m a singer/songwriter from South East London, and I would define my music as a combination of R&B, soul and electronic sounds.

I recently released my second EP called Waiting Room. This EP is a reflection of where I am emotionally and physically in life, it’s an expression of various experiences and encounters I’ve had over the years.

The creative process behind the EP began with just me and the piano. I usually play around with chords, trying out different inversions and feeling out what works well together and then recording them on my phone.

For my song-making process I usually sing out different melodies whilst playing piano first and then write a rough draft of lyrics that could go with it. However, the process was different with the title track “Waiting Room”.

I came up with the title whilst I was on the train in New Cross on my way to my old job when I used to work full-time (sigh). I noted the idea down thinking it could be a possible song concept at some point. I thought of different ways I could use the words “waiting” and “room” and how I could focus them around my life.

When writing the EP, I recorded loads of demos, reworking melodies that I felt complimented the chords. Then once I felt confident with them, I would sing and practice them daily. I then took these songs to two beautiful producers, jazz pianist Aron Kyne and contemporary classical pianist Karim Kamar.

We were a very small team, but it worked well because they both listened to my ideas and articulated my feelings through sounds and rhythms. I really do believe that the music we made was a true representation of our personalities, it’s not just my EP but theirs too.

In our sessions we generally carried out the same formula. We began with the piano chords and then found the right synth sound (which is generally where the electronic element derived from) we thought vibed with the lyrics the best. Then Karim or Aron would embellish the chords I wrote, giving the song a little more sauce and depth.

Next we would sketch out the drum pattern and then put in a temporary structure of the song, then I would sing in a rough lead vocal line. Some sessions were purely based on production and the musical development; whereas other studio sessions would focus around the vocals, adding adlibs and harmony lines and getting the best take with the right amount of emotion.

The EP is inspired by love, vulnerability and self-worth. All three of which I’ve had a few challenges with over the years but all have been equally beautiful and life-changing at the same time.

With the songs based on romantic love like “Clothes Off” and “Love Me Or Leave Me”, they brought me to write about extremely rare and precious moments in my life that will stay with me forever. They’re about first loves, finding your soulmate too soon and the reciprocation of love.

I wrote “Waiting Room” and “Gold” when I was struggling with my self-worth, identity, and experiencing PTSD, due to rejection from previous music colleagues.

All four songs on the EP are previews of some of my most vulnerable moments in life so far. That’s why I put in a lot of emphasis when writing my vocal melodies lines so I can really try to channel and convey the right amount of lament in the song. It is taking the listener on the journey with me but also leaving room for the listener to relate to the topic as well.

My creative team also helped take the EP to another level, with the visuals and the styling. The colours and bold clothing allowed me to embrace my full femininity and continue my journey into womanhood with confidence, elegance and sass.

Listen to Waiting Room below!

Words by Kaia Laurielle // Follow her on Twitter + Instagram

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