With years in the music business, a Grammy nomination (Best Contemporary R&B Album) for her debut album, First Love, and having worked with industry veterans, one would assume that Karina Pasian is well into her 20-somethings, but the 20-year-old songstress continues to soar to new heights with her latest EP, Trips To Venus.
The New York native is no rookie in the world of R&B by any means. With her music career starting at a mere three years old, signing her first record deal at 13, becoming the first person of Dominican descent to perform at the White House and a Grammy nod at 16, it’s no argument that Karina has already survived a great career. However, her ability to do this all while studying at NYC’s Professional Performing Arts School–other notable alum include Alicia Keys and Britney Spears–is the most impressive. In an exclusive interview with VIBE Vixen, Karina took time chat about the music, her day-to-day life and how she stayed grounded in an industry where most female artists get lost in the shuffle.
VIBE VIXEN: Last month you released your EP, Trips to Venus. Tell me about the album and the inspiration on some of the songs.
KARINA PASIAN: The album includes songs about love and is inspired by 90s music. I hope fans will get a place to be happy, something that not only sounds good, but moves them.
In one word, can you describe how each on song on the EP will make our Vixens feel when they press play?
“Dead End,” anger and hurt. “Just Another Melody,” nonchalant. “Last To Know,” “Respect,” “Perfectly Different,” “Proud/Secure” and “When You’re In Love,” bliss.
What’s a typical day for Karina Pasian?
I’m very emotional, so when I feel emotional, I go to the studio to record. I also spend a lot of time with family and enjoy kickboxing classes. I think going to high school throughout my career kept me balanced. I still went to prom; I still had a high school life, so I’m able to separate my life from the music.
So how do you describe your style? Over the years, we’ve seen you try a lot of different looks.
I can’t label it. My style is ever-changing. Some days I’m in a snap back and sneakers, other [days] I’m girly. It’s really based on my mood. I’ve done the “skater girl,” the dark grunge phase, the “back pack” phase… I’ve done it all.
Can you you give us your top looks? For example, your fave looks for everyday, the red carpet, the club and the studio?
In the studio, I like to be very comfortable. I usually wear basketball shorts. On the Red Carpet I love to dress up with heels and accessories. Performance depends on the type of performance and where, but I love to dress up. In heels I feel powerful.
Where can Vixens go to get that Karina Pasian style?
I shop in Urban Outfitters, Topshop, Zara, Free People and I love nastygal.com. (Nastygal.com is a New & Vintage Clothing online retailer.)