WITH VON IVA
Girls on a Roll
By ArtgirlLet's talk about sex appeal! The Von Iva’s have it and have no problem showing it! From the moment these women step out on stage, you can’t keep your eyes off them. They are true rock stars, in the sexiest form. And they’ve got the skills to back it up. With uber musical talent, mad self promotion skills, and an unstoppable publicist and there's no telling how far Von Iva will climb! In a short time, they played the night stage in their first appearance in MichFest, been cast in the Hollywood flick "Yes Man," written a score for and appeared in the reality series "Curl Girls," and are currently touring with a song on L Word. Oh, and it turns out they even have “great personalities.” Pinch me.
Kelly Harris (Lay Lay) took some time out during their heavy tour schedule to speak with GoGetYourGirlOn.com!! Lucky us!
ARTGIRL: Can you tell me about your current tour?
KELLY: Yes! We’re touring with Semi Precious Weapons and Nico Vega. We’ve come up with a new type of movement called “Street Glam,” which encompasses all sorts of fashion, edginess and gayness! It’s fun to have this sort of alignment with another band so we’re working on getting the movement across and going to every city and enjoying the opportunity to do that.
ARTGIRL: Are you sharing the stage in one performance or performing independently?
KELLY: We’re different bands who perform separately. We just treated remixes so, they did a remix of one of our songs "Livin For It," and we did a remix of one of their songs "Magnetic Baby," We’re trying to spread out into the dance club world too and have our DJ friends spin remixes of each others bands. So it’s pretty exciting!
KELLY: Wow! That’s great to hear! We have a great gay audience. We have a lot of gay men who are into Von Iva and we have a huge lesbian following as well! I think it’s pretty diverse. The people who really get it, who buy every record and every t-shirt are people that are in a place where they’re open to the edgier sort of thing.
ARTGIRL: I heard that you currently performed to the MichFest crowd!!
KELLY: Oh yeah, that was really really amazing! Going into Michigan, none of us really knew what to expect. The idea of a band with our needs, camping out was one thing and we thought if was going to be like a hippie convention and it ended up being something totally different. When we got there, it was amazing. There were women everywhere and all kinds of women. It felt like a little town. We met so many great performers that weekend. The cool thing that I can say is that it seems like a place you go and you play with these women and everybody loses their inhibitions and feels safe and it gives you the confidence to go back into the “normal” world with more confidence about what you’re doing. It gives you a chance to regain your strength a little bit because all these women are there to support you. It’s like a big warm hug. Bottom line.
ARTGIRL: How did you feel the crowd responded to you?
KELLY: I can say with confidence that we were way different from the other bands. I think that they got it and they liked it. We were probably the loudest band and they had this catwalk that went way out into the audience and we like to think that they built it just for Jillian. I think that she utilized that more than any other performer. It was a sexier side to the women’s music festival. And that’s something that’s valid for women, feeling confident with their sexuality and feeling sexy. There were other people who were performing where it was more folk music and people who were talking about deeper issues. We just got up there and did our party thing and people really loved it. I think that’s what we were most nervous about. Our message was really basic. Let yourself go, have a good time and don’t think about this too hard. Let’s party!
ARTGIRL: That’s great that you’re bringing something a little more edgy to the festival!
KELLY: Yes. I’m 34 but I felt like I was on the outside of the lesbian community because I didn’t have a lot that I felt that I could connect with in the traditional sense of lesbians and now I feel like it’s changed drastically and more people are coming out and doing things with the label of being gay or being open to however they want to classify themselves.
ARTGIRL: I think that’s incredibly impressive, especially since you were doing this independently.
KELLY: Yeah, well I think it’s a lesson that’s really important to put out there for people. The longer you wait around and you wait for people to be interested in you as an artist and musician it’s just better to take control with today’s music industry the way it is. You have a lot of control, much more than you think. There are so many outlets and there are so many people like [GoGetYourGirlOn.com] who are putting things out in different markets, gay, straight, whatever. You just have to get out there and find people who will be interested in what you’re doing.
ARTGIRL Do you have any exciting projects coming up?
KELLY: We have so many things!
ARTGIRL: Tell me all of them!
KELLY: Well, we have a song coming out on the L Word on one of the new episodes. It’s one of our new songs. We have a licensing deal with this company in New York called the Royalty Network. So they will be shopping a full catalogue of songs to various TV shows and film and video games and I feel like that’s a really important thing for our band because as you know, the way the music industry is, trying to be on tour and not having a record label, we’re trying to do this all on our own. It’s great to have some kind of other income and this is one way to do it. So we have someone specifically shopping for deals, which is really exciting! And we have three songs that we’re going to be recording. For us, getting into the studio, getting as many songs together and having as many opportunities as we can with licensing is really important for our band.
ARTGIRL: You were also picked up for the movie “Yes Man,” starring Jim Carey. Movie spots are a coveted position! How did that happen?
KELLY: We put out the record "Our Own Island" ourselves instead of waiting around for a label. Music superviser, Jonathan Karp was shopping around for new music and picked it up. At the time, he was beginning to think about what kind of band would be good for the movie. So, he sent the CD over to the director of “Yes Man” and he thought it would be really cool to have us come up with ideas and help create these characters for the movie based on our own characters from Von Iva.
ARTGIRL: That’s so fun! You’re playing characters based on yourselves. I love that! You also had a TV spot with the reality series “Curl Girls” on LOGO. How did you enjoy that?
KELLY: We played on the beach for the surf contest in the show as our own band and we got a lot of response. So many people saw us on the show. We played in LA two weeks after the finale and there were people there who had found out about us through that show. It was a blast, a whole new experience. We also wrote the theme song for “Curl Girls” and that was really fun because that was our first time that we were ever paid to write a song for TV and it was cool that it came from LOGO. It’s really great when someone has the confidence in you to do something at that level.
ARTGIRL: Well, listening to your list of projects is tiring me out. You certainly have endless energy! So, there’s really no easy transition into my next question but I want to know your answer. If you could have any body part signed by any celebrity in the world, what would it be and by who?
I just want to note here that Kelly did not pause even for a second. I’m not sure my question was even entirely out before the answer started coming out so naturally.
KELLY: Oh that’s really easy, Penelope Cruise and I would say if she were to lift up the back of my hair and sign the back of my neck.
ARTGIRL: Wow that’s hot! I have goosebumps! You’ve given this some thought?
KELLY: Actually, no...I think it’s just a given! It’s an easy question to answer.
ARTGIRL: No pause?
KELLY: No pause.