Rock Forever Magazine: You were a member of Team Adam on The Voice season 2. So many artists dream of collaborating with Adam Levine. Can you give us some insight on what the experience was like? What was your favorite moment from behind the scenes of working with him?
Katrina Parker: Adam was a great coach – really focused and invested in his contestants. That being said, I think my favorite moment was rehearsing the final group number with our team's top 4. He insisted on playing the drums even though producers were pressuring him to sing (he refused – he didn't want to steal our thunder). He was beating the crap out of the drums with this backwards baseball cap on and seemed like a big kid the whole night. It was nice to see him let loose and be kind of silly.
Rock Forever Magazine: Did you have any expectations of what your experience on The Voice would be like before it actually happened? If so, how was the experience different from how you previously visualized it?
Katrina Parker: I had no idea what I was getting into when I auditioned for The Voice, but even if I did - there was no way to prepare for the experience. You're sequestered in a hotel with the other contestants, and you have very little personal space, a jam-packed schedule and a LOT of pressure. You're also on TV every week - watching people's reactions from inside this bubble and trying not to let it affect you. It was a challenge – you could either fail miserably or rise to the occasion. It helped to be surrounded by producers and staff who really cared, and as hard as it was to be there – it was even harder to leave.
Rock Forever Magazine: What is the #1 thing that has surprised you the most and the #1 thing that has changed the most since your time on The Voice?
Katrina Parker: I think the fact that I'm making music full time continues to surprise me. I’m constantly grateful for that gift (it's not something I was able to do prior to The Voice). I've also changed a lot personally since the show. I'm tougher, scrappier and more confident. I take a LOT more risks and step out of my comfort zone regularly. I've found it's the only way to survive as an independent musician (and I can thank the show for a lot of that).
Rock Forever Magazine: Your album “In and Out of The Dark” was released in September. What is the significance behind the album title?
Katrina Parker: The title is taken from the title track, which is a song about sensing someone you love is being unfaithful to you. However, I think it also applies to the last few years of my life during and after The Voice - surviving my darkest days to get to the bright spots.
Rock Forever Magazine: If you had to come up with a mission statement of what it is you want to accomplish through your music on this album, what would it be?
Katrina Parker: Music has always been about catharsis and communication for me. I have a burning need to tell my own stories via music, but I also want people to hear themselves in it and know they're not alone. I think that all anyone wants – as a listener and a music creator – is to be understood, to move or be moved. Music is the great communicator.
Rock Forever Magazine: What inspired you musically and lyrically on this album?
Katrina Parker: I was listening to a lot of Pop radio at the time (something I've never really done before). I think I was trying to inadvertently educate myself on writing better melodies and making music that was more accessible to a larger audience. I also just felt drawn to that type of music after the show, so it was a natural fit for the record. Lyrically, the songs are about the good, the bad and the ugly of the last 4 years of my life. I worked a lot of things out on this record – a lot of heartbreak and lot of feeling born again.
Rock Forever Magazine: For anyone who isn’t too familiar with you or your music yet, if they could only listen to one song from your album as a first impression, which one would you pick and why?
Katrina Parker: I would probably send them to the title track “In and Out of the Dark.” It's a solid introduction to the type of writing you'll hear throughout the record. It's also one of the first songs I wrote for the album. I'm really proud of it.
Rock Forever Magazine: Can you tell us what other projects you have been working on since the album release?
Katrina Parker: In addition to promoting the album far and wide, I wrote a weekly blog about season 5 of The Voice for The Wrap (who knew TV writing would be such fun?). Then from November to December, I did a Christmas single and a set of Christmas shows, which was so successful it will have to become an annual tradition. I also finished writing a new EP, which I hope to record in the Spring. It'll be more of an acoustic Americana project, harkening back to my Southern roots a bit. We're working on a few other business ventures, but we can't talk about them quite yet.
Rock Forever Magazine: If you could create your dream tour lineup, who would you want to go on tour with and why?
Katrina Parker: My DREAM tour would involve Dolly Parton, because she is my hero.
Rock Forever Magazine: What are your upcoming plans for 2014?
Katrina Parker: We have a lyric video for “Dirty Girls” coming out on January 30th (to coincide with the release of a “Millionaire Matchmaker” episode that features both myself and the song). We hope to do a live action video for the track by Spring. In February, we'll be releasing a series of YouTube videos – acoustic versions of songs off “In and Out of the Dark,” as well as some new songs from the upcoming EP. We're also going to be doing a series of online shows via Stage-it, a “virtual tour” done in the time zones of some of my biggest fans. Last but not least, I'm hoping the new EP will out by Summer (or before).
Subscribe to youtube.com/rockforevermagazine for more exclusive interviews!