The Ballad by i.V KiNG is what we all need right now.
i.V KiNG is a perfect blend of A-List pop and modern storytelling. KiNG was certainly not crowned without struggle, her lyrics paint vivid pictures of both the beauty and pain of growing up with one foot in the church and the other the LGBTQ+ community. KiNG’s sound blends Olivio Rodrigo pop accessibility with visceral lyricism and storytelling you might expect on a Brandi Carlile album. In her songs we hear piano ballads juxtaposed with divine anthems with KiNG inviting her audience on a bold journey to reexamine, reconstruct, & reclaim pieces of themselves on their own terms. Listening is a cathartic and healing experience as KiNG’s angelic vocals make even the rawest emotions seem bearable.
“I wrote this song as a forgiveness song. ” I’m glad you didn’t stay” is something we can rarely say until the dust has settled and we can see things from a different perspective. I am a queer artist, so the inspiration for many of the songs I write/produce is to increase LGBTQ+ visibility and storytelling in the pop culture and music space. Though, this song was written from that lens, I do feel this story is relatable to almost anyone who has been through heartache or loss. I hope you enjoy this song as much as I do.”i.V KiNG
The song starts with a soft piano melody accompanied by beautiful the beautiful vocal delivery for i.V KiNG herself. The lyrics carry us through a soft spoken story that leads to the emotional and powerful chorus. The vocal textures are a sweet touch to the track, making it feel as if we’re in the same room as i.V KiNG. I absolutely adore the storytelling throughout the song, with the bridge tying everything together perfectly.
The music video delivers a visual story to go along with the track. It includes beautiful shots of i.V KiNG in several outfits throughout the video, including a wonderful white wedding dress and a stylish white blazer fit. I think my favorite shot is the one with her on the beach giving us a heartfelt delivery on screen of the lyrics. Every shot is crystal clear, the quality is there, and our hearts are captured by The Ballad.
I had the privilege of interviewing i.V KiNG about her new single, check it out below!
What inspired you to make this song?
I wrote this song as a forgiveness song. “I’m glad you didn’t stay” is something we can rarely say until the dust has settled and we can see things from a different perspective. I am a queer artist, so the inspiration for many of the songs I write and produce is to increase LGBTQ+ visibility and storytelling in the pop culture and music spaces. Though this song was written from that lens, I do feel this story is relatable to almost anyone who has been through heartache or loss. I hope you enjoy this song as much as I do!
Was there any musical inspiration from other artists that helped influence this track?
Yes, two artists! Olivia Rodrigo’s “Driver’s License” and Harry Styles’ “Sign of the Times.” I love a good pop ballad and these are two of my favorites recently. Not so much the lyrical essence of the song, but the song structure definitely influenced this one! I knew the bridge of “The Ballad” needed to be HUGE to deliver the emotional response I was trying to convey.
What was your favorite part about making this song?
Oh man! I truly hate to commit to a favorite part of making this song because I honestly had such a good time with the WHOLE entire process.
But IF I have to pick, I’d have to say I had a very special moment in the second day of writing the lyrics and the vocal melody. I had written most of the lyrics rather quickly, they just kept seeming to fall out of my soul. But when I wrote the bridge, something inside of me seemed to shift. It was almost like I stepped into a new way of writing that I hadn’t ever experienced before. I had my laptop and a cheap vocal mic in my kitchen, of all places, and I was sort of screaming the vocal parts. I just kept layering one on top of the other and it just sounded so “angelic” to me that I started singing “Hallelujah”. That was the moment I felt free both creatively and emotionally. I hope people can experience and feel that moment with me while listening to this song because that’s what it’s all about– reaching inside of ourselves and allowing permission to heal, move on, shift and grow. Something changed for the good in me the day I wrote “The Ballad”.
Where did you record this song, and what are the vibes in the studio like with you?
I actually recorded and produced this song in a few different spaces but it was all done in Los Angeles. Pierre Jamerson, the co-producer, and I did most of the musical creation in his home studio. I recorded the drums live at Mike Avenaim’s studio and recorded vocals at Deep End studio.
Was this release cathartic to create?
Very! I feel like all the music I create is cathartic at some level. Art is such a beautiful process of expressing what is inside of your soul. I can’t imagine writing from a different place. That aspect does make releasing my music a very vulnerable process, but I feel the vulnerability helps and allows others to connect to me and my music, or at least I sure hope it does! I make it for us all collectively.
What keeps you motivated?
I have a baby on the way. Haha! It is true, I do have a baby on the way, but what really keeps me motivated is the message behind my lyrics. I have a story to share and I think it’s important for the listeners that I am trying to connect with. Singing and dancing and sharing the collective experience of music together is the best feeling on Earth.
What can we expect next from you?
I am currently working on an EP. I assume that once this interview is out my next single, “Divine”, will be announced, and if not, whoops! I spilled the beans! “Divine” will be released October 29th, 2021! I am also hosting a huge concert series called “The Queer Revival” with the first stop in Springfield, MO. If you’re in the area, I would love to see you if you’re into having drag queens and live music in a church! It’s going to be one hell of a time! Look us up on social media, @thequeerrevival.
What other artists are you listening to right now?
I am ALWAYS listening to Brandi Carlile, she is the fairy gay mother for so many of us little queer kids trying to make a living in this weird and beautiful industry.
My current guilty pleasure is Olivia Rodrigo. I can’t help myself! Dan Nigro, the producer of her last album, is brilliant. I hope to work with him some day.
Thank you for taking the time to answer those questions, i.V KiNG!
Be sure to stream “The Ballad” by i.V KiNG on all platforms now, watch the music video below, and follow her on social below!
Written By: Bryce Quartz