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She's That Princi: Getting to know rising star Kimchi Princi

22 February 2017 | 8:39 am | Emma Jones

As far as rising artists go, they don't get much more exciting than KIMCHI PRINCI.

As far as rising artists go, they don't get much more exciting than KIMCHI PRINCI. More than a rapper, more than a musician, she provides social commentary for the millenial age. A poet since she was a child, Gina Karlikoff channels her skills as a poetess into her living, breathing medium that is Kimchi Princi, and thanks to her visual collaborations with her sister, they continue to bring her to life time and time again, from photo shoots to videos, .gifs to the stage.

Teaming up with Slim Set and V-Kim regularly in the past as well, Kimchi Princi is a collaborative effort from forward-thinking creatives. Pushing boundaries and constructs, the team behind KP are as unique and interesting on their own as the art they're putting forward, and we here at Purple Sneakers have loved watching it all grow.

Finally getting some recognition she now deserves, Kimchi Princi has just played a show in Canberra, and will be performing at Red Bull Sound Select in just a couple of weeks, alongside KLLO and HABITS at the Chippendale Hotel on February 24 for Red Bull Sound Select. RSVP HERE for $3 tickets. We sat down with her to ask her a few questions and get to know her better. Check it out!

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You just had a show in Canberra, how was that?

It was really good to see Habits and Tkay Maizda in the one night. My friend Talei (DJ Piccolo) who just moved to Canberra was my DJ so that was super fun. And Narit, who organised it, makes every event special. Later in the night he found a spiced katsu chicken burger and it was the perfect thing I could’ve eaten at the time. I’ve got a lot of love for the Canberra crowds, I think we crush each other hard lol.

You’re an up-and-comer in the music scene, but you’ve been a poet for much, much longer. How did it come about that you would use music for your poetry? Was it something you were always drawn to?

Yeh, I was always writing poems and stuff as a kid and did music on the side so putting the two together was something that felt right. I think I was just at an age where I got to know people who made beats and being like ‘hey I think this poem I wrote will sound fun on that’. Then I just ran with it.

You collaborate a lot with your sister, and honestly we cannot get enough. How important is it to you to have that deep familiarity and having your collaborator know you so well? Do you think it adds an element?

Aw cool, thank u :) It is really important to me – I mean, nothing would be how it is now if it wasn’t for that. I guess it’s more of a life collab quite literally. All our influences shape each other and it’s handy that she’s a fucking visionary lol.

It’s also been sick to sonically collab with Slim Set (Dev on the mic, Atro on production). They’ve become family to me so working on new stuff with them and doing live shows together makes it easy to push each other but have all the fun along the way. Lots of talking shit and eating fried chicken...that’s family haha.

Your music works as a kind of social commentary, and is really easy to relate to for so many millennials who live and work on the internet. Do you feel like sometimes it’s life imitating art, or the other way around?

A bit of both. On the one hand these are the different things that I do or have happened to me and with others I’ll take inspo from things around me and take it from there.

One of my favourite things about Kimchi Princi is your look - you work the room so damn hard every time. Can we expect to see a foray into fashion at all? Please say there will be a line of Kimchi Princi embroided boob tubes coming soon?

Wow, thank you. I do go hard and what I’ll wear is a big part of that. I don’t know so much about making clothes but I do have a clear idea of what I wanna see on myself.

As for the KP boob tubes? Maybe! The one I’ve been wearing is by Anna Hubble who is incredible at making comfy club wear. She’d made that one for herself so I asked if I could order one with the KP embroidered in. We definitely have more collabs in the works ;)

What can we expect next from you? Do you have any plans for world domination in 2017?

Naturally lol. So far there’s going to be an Asia tour throughout May and I’m at the early stages of working on the next release, possibly an album. Other than that who knows…been meeting good people, been learning, been writing, been observing. Just putting all that into whatever shape and sound I can.

Kimchi Princi joins KLLO & HABITS at the Chippendale Hotel on February 24 for Red Bull Sound Select. RSVP HERE for $3 tickets.

Introduction and questions by Emma Jones

Image: Elliott Lauren for Ladies of Leisure