Turn it Down: Krissy Booth brings Michigan-made pop majesty to Culture Clash

Singer, songwriter chats with City Pulse

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Friday, Feb. 21 @ The Avenue, 2021 E. Michigan Ave., Lansing. 21+. Free, 9 p.m.

Krissy Booth, known for her sleek-pop prowess, returns Friday to The Avenue Café to perform at Culture Clash, a monthly event highlighting diverse genres and artforms. Sharing the bill are 616 and EssBe & Y’z Council. Booth grew up in Williamston, spent time living in Lansing and is now based in Detroit where she’s prepping two “big projects” for 2020. 

How has your sound evolved over the last few years?

Krissy Booth: What I’m writing and releasing right now is mostly dreamy pop. My older music is avant-garde pop that you’ll love if you like St. Vincent and Kesha. What inspires me are people and my experiences with them … and weird sounds. One of my favorite songs samples a bike spoke. It’s called “FntsyGrl.” I’ll release that soon. All of my songs are love songs in some way. Everything I do is inspired by love.

Looking back, who’s inspired your career path in music?

Grimes and Imogen Heap are both female producers, musicians and performers. I wanted to be able to be that kind of capable writer-performer. 

Growing up, what pushed you toward music?

I always wanted to be a singer, or a mermaid … When I was really young, my family was getting a divorce. I’d put on my headphones and listen to music — Britney Spears and Madonna — to escape, so it’s always been a dreamy place for me where everything is OK. I loved Mariah Carey and took classical/operatic lessons so I’d be able to do some of the things she could do, and I was in choir through school. I also loved how Prince was able to play all instruments. 

From there, you taught yourself piano and guitar and crafted your own unique sound. What led you to booking your first show in Lansing?

I was really afraid of singing my actual songs in front of people for a long time. I didn’t know if there was a place for my music, with all of the guitar rock here — but there is. I just had to take the chance and make that space. Since then, I’ve tried to push myself to be unafraid of performing and keep writing how I feel and doing what I want. Now, I want my friends and audience members to feel loved and empowered. I try to make each show more over the top than the last. 

Release-wise, what can people listen to from Krissy Booth?

“Vivid” is an album I released in September 2017. Since then I’ve released a few singles: “Lose Sleep With You,” “Intuition,” “All The Way” and “Selfish,” all in the past year. 

You self-produced the “Vivid” LP, how was that venture?

It was long. I wrote and rewrote every song, and tracked and retracked things in my parents’ basement. Each song on “Vivid” is such a different huge emotion. I wanted it to feel like that. “Fire” is about a relationship falling apart and being upset you can’t feel that anymore. “Go” is a song that feels so shattered and delicate. “Gold” is one where I wanted to have warm synths really reinforce this gold, always-love feeling. “Somewhere” is about feeling joy again and the rush of having a crush after being heart broken. 

Tell me about “Selfish.” What inspired that single?

It’s about a love affair that was actually very sweet, but we both knew it wasn’t a forever thing. Every time we were together, he’d say, “Sorry, this is so selfish and we’re wasting our time.” My song is about owning that feeling unabashedly. If you’re enjoying your life, what’s wrong with that? 

For updates on her upcoming releases, follow facebook.com/krissyboothmusic.

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