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Dallas rapper Kaash Paige just got signed to Def Jam records. She doesn't have time for "Fake Friends."
Dallas rapper Kaash Paige just got signed to Def Jam records. She doesn't have time for "Fake Friends."
Meredith Truax

Dallas’ Kaash Paige, Newly Signed to Def Jam Label, Already Has a Fan in Kylie Jenner

The next year promises to continue to be big for Dallas hip-hop, especially with women rappers. Combining  angelic vocals and killer streetwear is local R&B singer Kaash Paige. At the young age of 18, Paige’s résumé boasts many enviable feats, including a deal with a major label and co-signs from one of the world’s biggest influencers.

While many discover their passion for music at an early age, Paige didn’t discover hers until later on in life.

“My parents always put me in sports, like track and softball,” Paige says. “After sports, music became my passion. But I was never consistent, until my senior year.”

Although Paige was in choir, she never felt passionate about choral arrangements. Her new EP, Parked Car Convos, fuses elements of trap and R&B.

“When you're in the hotbox, or like, you're in the car with somebody sitting there and having like real deep, intimate conversations, I feel like that's the best way to vent,” Paige says. “It’s the best way to get stuff off of your chest and just vibe out and get to know somebody. If my songs can make you feel a certain way in the car and outside the car, it was just a vibe.”

The EP has a song called “Fake Friends,” which is about a friend of Paige’s going after a woman she was interested in dating. Paige says the song’s lyrics are based on actual events.

“I had a home girl, and we were real cool,” Paige recalls. “But on the slick, she was pillow-talking on my name to get to the girl that I was talking to. She succeeded, but once you cross me, it’s over. You’re never going to see me again. Unless it’s on TV.”

As an openly bisexual woman in hip-hop, Paige doesn’t see her sexuality as a limitation. Rather, she believes it puts her at an advantage.

“I find it cool because it's like I'm speaking from a male and a female perspective at the same time,” Paige says, “so I feel like that's why everybody really fucks with me.”

One of the recurring bits of symbolism in Paige’s songs is the image of an orange sweater. “Love Songs” which serves as a bonus track on Parked Car Convos contains the lyrics “you're the only one I want to wear my orange sweater.” One of her earlier singles is actually called “Orange Sweater.” Paige was given the titular orange sweater when she was younger. She says that whenever she wears it, it brings her luck.

“You know when you talk to somebody and they want to wear your hoodie or anything like that?” Paige says. “It's like I'm letting you have a part of me. For me to give you my orange sweater is like giving you a part of me.”

Through TikTok, “Love Songs” has become one of Paige’s breakout singles. Recently, Kylie Jenner was seen listening to “Love Songs” on her Instagram story.

“A fan sent me her story,” Paige recalls, “and was like, ‘Yo, Kylie’s bumping your shit,’ and I’m like, ‘For real?’ and then when I looked at it I’m like ‘Bro, she’s like really bumping it.’ At this point, she really fucks with my music and I appreciate it.”

Paige’s quick rise has resulted in a performance slot at Rolling Loud, which took place in Los Angeles last weekend, as well as a deal with Def Jam.

“Def Jam hit me up like way back in February,” Paige says. “When they reached out, I was in the process of meeting with so many different labels, but I kind of knew I was going to be going with [Def Jam] because it felt more team-oriented and more family-oriented. We gave like a few months and when they saw me starting to go up and whatever, they were like ‘Bet. She’s a star. We’re gonna have her on our team.’”

Paige is currently in the process of recording her major-label debut. Although she enjoys smoking marijuana, she advises against smoking before recording vocals.

“I smoke weed every fucking day,” Paige says with a laugh. “But I never get high in the studio. I wait until after ... that way I can hear more and decide if I like it or not. When you’re high, you can hear more, so I can just be like ‘No, I don’t like the way it sounds with that beat’ or ‘No, I think I need to change that note.’”

Over the next year, Paige hopes to land more performance slots and to be placed on XXL’s annual freshman list. Long term, she hopes to go down in history as a rock star.

“Being called a rock star is so live,” Paige says. “They have that cult fan base that loves them as a person. So it’s like, ‘Not only do I love your music, but I love you.’ So you know they’re gonna go hard for you.”

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