Meet our Heroine:
Kelly Di Filippo
The Loving Paupers
Describe your musical style:
My personal style that you can hear reflected in “The Loving Paupers”: Enigmatic and rebellious; sweet and melodic
How did you get into music and become an artist?
I was born this way (as an artist) and music has always affected me. My parents have always supported me, providing instruments and lessons early on, while making up their own share of songs along the way. I wrote my first song, “Drowning in thoughts of sorrow” (I’ve yet to grow out of my dramatic nature) at 12. But it was never recorded by “Neighborhood Girls” (a band that was never officially named until right now), consisting of my two besties and myself, messing around in my Dad’s basement studio.
Who are your major influences?
The Beatles, Paul McCartney, Thomas Di Filippo, ELO, Brand New, Dido, Joshua Rich, The Dixie Chicks, The Barenaked Ladies, Al Green, Bob Marley, The Lowlife, Matt Tramontana and other friends.
What was your first musical memory as a kid?
My parents made tapes of Disney songs for car rides.And singing into my cupped hands in the bath (for the good acoustics) - I still do it!
Do you have a local female musical mentor or inspiration?
My very cool friend, Cathy DiToro, has pushed me to expand my comfort zone and talents. She was my first gal pal in the DC scene, and the way she instills confidence in you, by believing in you, herself, is magic. Thank You, Cathy, for doing this on behalf of all of us.
What advice do you have for women trying to get into the music scene (locally or otherwise)?
Never compare yourself to another artist. Sing your songs out loud if they get stuck in your head. Don’t force yourself to create something new if you’re just not feeling it- there’s always something you could learn instead, if you want to be productive musically.
How do you connect to the mission of ProjectHERA?
ProjectHERA is fun! It provides an atmosphere of support and acceptance- basic needs- but also there is an air of playfulness, like relationships you had when you were a kid. It’s not work - it’s normalcy. A community. Supporting women outside of personal friend groups is finally trending, and HERA will help us fully shift out of that dog-eat-dog mentality that we expect women to still have.
What are some challenges you face in the music industry - both as a woman and also just as a performer?
I get embarrassed by sound check! You don’t have to be original every time. “Check one - two” is still cool. Also, that people will not be open to all of your ideas and that shouldn’t be perceived as negative. Use them for another project that is more suiting.