There is this really obscure little song. You probably haven’t heard of it. Hardly anybody has but it’s really good. It’s called “Call Me Maybe.” Have you heard of it? OK, I’m just kidding. I know you have all heard it at least a million times and watched about 300 different parody videos: the version with Justin Bieber and his friends, the Harvard Baseball team, the U.S. Olympic Swim team, Cookie Monster, and countless others. Read on to find out how Carly Rae’s life was changed by this 1 little song.
Q: Congratulations on your #1 hit “Call Me Maybe.” How did the song change your life?
Carly Rae: Oh, it’s been quite the adventure this one little song has taken me on. I was pursuing a career in Canada and then I wrote “Call Me Maybe” with two of my good friends, Tavish Crowe and Josh Ramsay, and Justin [Bieber] of course heard of the song and tweeted about it. Since then I’ve been travelling all over the world and getting to visit places I never thought I would. It’s really been very exciting.
Q: How does it feel to have your song top the charts in the U.S., Australia, Ireland, and the UK?
Carly Rae: It’s very surreal. When I was 7 years old I remember saying out loud to my parents that when I grew up I wanted to be a singer and I wanted to travel the world, and to see that that actually gets to happen feels very much like a fairy tale come true.
Q: What advice do you have for kids who want to be performers when they grow up?
Carly Rae: I think it’s really important to learn an instrument as soon as you can, and to also just never really give up. Keep trying different ways to kind of pursue your dream because life is short and you want to make it count.
Q: What is the craziest fan encounter you’ve ever had?
Carly Rae: One time I went back to my hometown, Mission, B.C., and the mayor of Mission asked me to help him judge a pumpkin carving contest. One of the local fans had actually carved a pumpkin of my face, and it looked like me, an orange me, but still me.
Q: What is one thing that people would really be surprised to know about you?
Carly Rae: I really like to do kind of mellow, just kind of casual things. I like to play chess. I really love to cook. I actually used to be a pastry chef for a little while. I know how to make 9 cheesecakes at a time. I can’t make just one but if you want 9, I got you covered.
Q: Can you tell us about your new album, Kiss?
Carly Rae: It’s kind of been the project of my life. Some of the songs were ideas I had when I was just 17 years old, and some of them were written honestly like 2 weeks before the due date. So it’s really felt like a collection of a lifetime for me, and it’s sort of inspired by Robyn and La Roux and a bit of Madonna, and it’s also kind of got an 80s vibe, kind of like The Cars.
Q: Who’s your biggest influence?
Carly Rae: I would say my parents are probably number one. I love the way that they are passionate about music just like I am. I think they’re really good people. But I would say, if I were to pick a musician, I really grew up on a guy named James Taylor. He’s one of my favorites.
Q: Can you tell us your songwriting process?
Carly Rae: Sometimes it’s very much like a journal entry if I’ve had a crush on a guy or if I, you know, just tried something new and I want to write about it, but other times it’ll be just from listening to people. I get a lot of my ideas from words and lyrics. So I’ll be in a conversation with you and you might say something really inspiring and I’ll have to stop and get a pen and write it down and add it to a song later.
Q: Are you as famous as you had hoped to be?
Carly Rae: I don’t know that I ever like thought of a level of fame that I was after. It was more just about being able to make music and hopefully being able to make a career out of it. And the fact that people sometimes recognize me now is kind of part of the package that sometimes is really exciting but also sometimes is really nerve-racking. So it’s a little bit of both.
Q: Was it fun making the “Call Me Maybe” music video?
Carly Rae: Yeah, it was really fun. It was actually freezing cold that day. It doesn’t look like it. We tried to make it look like it was summer, but I had a lot of fun. In between takes of being in little Daisy Duke shorts and pretending to wash a car in the summer, I was getting my girlfriends to run over with winter jackets and hot chocolate. I tried to pretend like it was more summertime than it actually was.
Q: How was recording with Owl City?
Carly Rae: Really cool. Actually it wasn’t how you would expect it to be. I was asked to do the song from Scooter Braun, Justin’s manager, and we ended up meeting over the internet, so I actually recorded my version of the song, or my piece of the verse, when I was in Canada, and just sent it to him over email. We actually didn’t meet until the first day of the music video shoot.
There you have it. And my Dance Party pick for this weekend is that Owl City song with Carly Rae Jepsen called “Good Time.” It’s so dance-y and fun! What do you think, love it or loathe it? Leave a Comment.
Interview by Cecilia Gault