Born in Keflavik, Iceland, Patty Crash began her American journey in the early 1990s. Once Patty Crash, formerly known as “Patty Cake,” set foot in the United States, she generated an anything but a normal persona. While settling into her new home city of Philadelphia, she encountered manager and producer of The Roots, Richard Nichols. Nichols took the singer-songwriter under his wing and assisted her in developing as an artist.
Patty Crash has been featured on The Roots’ Grammy-nominated album How I Got Over and rapper Tyga’s hit song, “Diamond Life.” Patty Crash also proudly assisted American rapper Logic on creating multiple songs from his album, Under Pressure. Now, the Philadelphia-based singer and songwriter sits down with RESPECT. to detail her grind over the years, and the official music video for her “Come Around” single.
Read Patty Crash’s RESPECT. interview below.
In your early years, you moved back and forth between Iceland and America. What were the biggest challenges you and your family faced when adjusting to life in the U.S.?
Well, learning to speak English was pretty rough, but mostly I just felt like such an outsider, I was the only Icelandic kid in the ESL program I was getting culture shock over and over going back and fourth and got really good at adapting to my surroundings.
In 2004, you attended a Roots concert that changed your life. What was it like getting to meet the legendary group and impress them with your talent?
To be honest, I didn’t really know much about them when I met them. I knew they were professional musicians and I knew I wanted that. I was underage and couldn’t get into their show so I drank at bar next door and was pretty lit by the time I got on the tour bus. I remember being in a cypher with Tariq (Black thought) next day I woke up to a call from him inviting me to come to Philly that same day. Black thought bought me tix and I came up that same day. I couldn’t believe it!
Do you remember where you were when you found out The Roots’ “The Day” single was nominated for a Grammy? How did you feel?
It was an amazing feeling being apart of something so special and exclusive, that being the Roots Crew <3
How long have you lived in Philly? Outside of The Roots, who are some local artists you enjoy listening to?
I have lived in Philly now for almost 10 years but spent the last 2 years in LA finishing my EP. There is so much good music in Philly. I listen mostly to my friends bands and music Barnee Mckenna is a fave of mine used to be in Cortez Cortez and Nico’s Gun which I love…Trash Knife, Nikki Jean. I still listen to Stiffed (Santigold‘s first band with Chuck Treece) and Chill Moody, just to name a few.
You once were signed to a major label, but things didn’t go as planned. What is the most valuable lesson you’ve learned thus far in the music industry?
Record labels don’t know shit. I’ve learned to stop thinking about the outcome and the results and try instead to focus on the work. I stoped waiting on some life changing record deal and I’m just pouring myself into the present moment and trying to seize it in every way possible.
You laid the chorus for Tyga’s 2008 hit “Diamond Life.” How did this opportunity yet come about?
My manager at the time had a relationship with Sam Hollander and crush managment, they had heard my voice and thought it was a good fit, and when Travie McCoy heard that record and saw my YouTube vids he asked me to jump on Gym Class heroes new album!
You contributed to a handful of songs on Logic’s 2014 Under Pressure album. Do you still keep in touch with him? What was the creative process like?
Logic is one of the nicest people I’ve ever met. Working with him was super inspiring. When he originally asked me to collab, he reached out to me via Twitter, but I was in a weird headspace and pretty depressed. Working with Logic pulled me out of that hole I was in and the experience inspired me. Getting to work in LA at No I.D.’s studio surrounded by palm trees and just seeing Logic’s passion and how immersed he was in what he was creating helped me remember that feeling that I had lost and that was the beginning of me getting it back.
Over the years, you have shown your versatility by collaborating with a diverse list of acts, all while developing your own sound. In 2016, you released “Pictures” with Australian producer Kronic. Are there any other producers that you have yet to work with that are on your “wish list?”
Hmmm, I think good production can come from random places I like creating with people I vibe with…don’t care too much about big names.
We now have your mesmerizing new single, “Come Around.” Was there a special someone that inspired this song? How long did it take to write?
“Come around” isn’t about a person, although to each it’s own. It’s about wanting and needing something really bad, kind of like a crutch that you need to feel whole. It could be a person, could be a drug. I wrote the verses and pre hooks like 5 years ago but the melody I wrote in LA while working at Dj White shadows studios.
What can fans expect to hear on your forthcoming Pretty Ugly EP? How did you develop the idea for the title?
They can expect it to be emo, ha. It’s a lot about reflection and inner conflict. I came up with the name 10 yrs ago because it’s a good representation of how I see life. Some of the most beautiful things can b so ugly and vice versa.
How can readers keep in touch with you?
Crashers can support “Come Around” on iTunes/Apple Music here.