DFM: Hey Vali, how are you?
VALI: I’m great! It’s 90 degrees right now, so I need a lemonade.
DFM: Where are you from?
VALI: NyC born and raised.
DFM: Where does the name Vali come from?
VALI: It’s a nickname my mom gave me, shortened name combining my First and Middle names; Kelly Valentina.
DFM: Now you are on Rostrum Records with Wiz Khalifa and Mac Miller, how did that come about?
VALI: I used to back up dance for a rapper managed by Benjy Grinberg. After sitting next to Benjy on a flight back to NYC, and playing him my own music, he was impressed and had me work on some Wiz mixtape hooks. From there I continued to grow as an artist and when I finally decided I wanted to be a recording artist of my own Benjy came on as my manger.
DFM: How was it working with Wiz Khalifa? Has he giving you any career advise?
VALI: Wiz is one of the most humble artists I’ve ever met, he understands the hustle and has taught me a lot about recording and writing music. He was actually the first person to show me twitter and is my first follower.
DFM: When you see the success that some of your label mates have had, do you feel any pressure to be just as or more successful than them?
VALI: Absolutely, but we each have had our own journey… So for me, it’s more about finding myself as an artist and making good music. They’re inspiring, and seeing their success just pushes me more.
DFM: Growing up who were some of your musical influences?
VALI: Beyonce and Michael Jackson were my two biggest influences. Writings on the wall is one of my favorite albums. I used to sing in the mirror and pretend I was Beyonce flipping my hair around as if it was braided.
DFM: How would you define your music?
VALI: Its like eating a cupcake with sprinkles while flipping switches in a low rider.
DFM: How do you separate yourself from other artist of your genre?
VALI: I love thinking outside the box; my imagination and concepts are very unique. I like to think of myself as an artist and creator, not just a singer.
DFM: When listeners hear Vali what do you think they will get out of your music?
VALI: They’ll expect some candy for their ears.
DFM: What would be your dream collaboration with any artist or producer? And Why?
VALI: Missy Elliot would be fuckin incredible. I’ve always been inspired by her creativity. She’s a legend.
DFM: What do you hope to accomplish throughout your career?
VALI: There’s so much I want to do in my life. Music is just the beginning for me. I definitely see fashion, producing and directing in my future.
DFM: What is up next for Vali?
VALI: New music is coming! Merch store is about to be up and running! And I’ve got some cookies up my sleeve. Make sure you follow me on instagrm and check out my website www.officialvali.com