Breakout artist Cailee Rae is bursting into the music scene with full force. Rae first found fame through sharing her music on Instagram. Now at only 16 years old, the singer has released her first EP, Overthinking, as well as her first music video for her single, “Anchor.” She combines her passion for songwriting with her creative vision to make music that truly connects to people. Here, we talk with her about her passion, inspiration, and vision for the future of her music.
Cliché: When did you first know you wanted to be a singer?
Cailee Rae: I really came out to California for songwriting. Since second grade, I’ve always written music. I came to California to record music I had written, but I never thought of becoming an artist. I didn’t think it was possible. Then Instagram came out with videos. We were always jamming in the studio and one day I decided to post it. After that, everything really started growing. That’s when I discovered I wanted to be an artist. Being an artist goes beyond the connection with the songs to having the connection with the people who are able to take what you say and pass it along.
What has been the biggest inspiration for your music?
For me, it has to be what surrounds me. Growing up, I had a hard time finding where I fit in. I’ve always been called an old soul, so I always felt a little bit like an outsider. I just knew I wanted to share messages with people. I grew up listening to Taylor Swift a lot and her music always stuck out to me. I was, like her, always writing songs. I believe the best songs come from truth. You write and find what works best.
What was your favorite part of making the music video for “Anchor”?
Seeing my concepts come to life and watching everyone work together on one big vision was so beautiful. The underwater portion was a bit challenging, but so fun. I had no idea there would be scuba diving to film. It was so amazing to see! Also, seeing how much work goes into a video and all the specific details were really incredible.
Being an artist goes beyond the connection with the songs to having the connection with the people who are able to take what you say and pass it along.
Where did the idea for the music video come from?
I really don’t know. I had laryngitis and was really sick. My mom took me to World Market to get a smoothie and on the car ride home, we were listening to the song. I got so into it and I really connected to the song; then the idea just happened.
When did you first start using Instagram as a platform for your singing?
It really happened when I started posting the covers of songs. I like showing people that you don’t have to sing a song the way it originally is. I love being able to take a song and make it my own. I like putting Cailee-ism into the song, as I call it.
Are you working on any music right now?
I’m always writing new songs. Right now, I really want to make a new music video. My favorite part of the musical process is always getting to see the artist’s vision, so I’d like to do more of that.
What’s been the most exciting part of your success thus far?
Definitely sharing a connection with my fans. They’re so supportive and such a great group of people. It doesn’t matter if you have a million fans or 20—it’s all about how you share your music with them. Music is a language everyone understands and can change lives. They’ve made the music.
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Why Rising Artist Cailee Rae Is One to Watch: Photographed by Jack Newport