I met Cathy almost a year ago at my cousin’s wedding in California last December. She was one of the lead vocalists in the band performing and she blew us all away with her voice. A couple months after the wedding, my brother and I were reminicing about that night and wondered what the name of the band from that night was when we somehow stumbled upon Cathy’s YouTube page. Little did we know that she was basically a YouTube celebrity with her recordings of covers and even some of her original songs.
Q: Cathy, how old are you and where are you from?
Cathy Nguyen: I am 21 and I am from West Covina, California. Although, my family & I moved to Chino about 2 years ago, so that’s where I currently reside now.
Q: When did you first begin singing and was it just for fun or could you see this as a possible career?
C: I first started singing pretty much when I was able to talk. I remember my mom teaching me songs as I was growing up & that’s all I’ve been doing since. I never really considered on actually pursuing music as a career until my senior year of high school. I joined choir for the first time & absolutely loved it. I tried out for my first solo & since then, I must say, I’ve finally stepped out of my comfort zone & began performing more, whether it be at church or at a choir concert. But now, of course, weighing all the options, and looking pros & cons of pursuing music, I’ve decided not to go all the way. I’m really content with where I stand right now in regards to music.
Q: I love the covers you have done! In my opinion your version of Keri Hilson’s “Knock You Down,” is way better than the original. You have a million views on that video and 2 million views on your “I’m Yours” cover. That’s pretty impressive! Were you shocked when you realized that you were becoming YouTube’s next superstar? ;)
C: Haha! Thank you so much! I really appreciate that. You know, I never imagined ever being able to get that many views on these dorky videos that I post, so I definitely was shocked. I’m STILL shocked actually! I’ve been so blessed ever since all this YouTube madness. Opportunities to do what I love began to increase and now, I have an event to perform at nearly once a week! To think, I started off like everyone else, WATCHING videos of people singing & performing, looking up to these people & enjoying watching their love & passion for music. & clearly, with the support of my family & friends, & really just through word of mouth, here I am, living my dream! I mean, not as a “Youtube superstar” haha, but I mean, being able to meet & work with these wonderful & talented singer/songwriters that I’ve watched & was [& still am!], inspired by.
Q: What is your favorite song to cover?
C: I have fun with every song that I choose to cover, but if I had to choose, I’d have to say “Lucky,” by Jason Mraz & Colbie Caillat. I love performing that with AJ Rafael.
Q: Who were your influences growing up?
C: I grew up listening to the typical boy bands & pop singers such as *NSYNC or Christina Aguilera. Haha! I mean, who didn’t? I grew up enjoying listening & singing to their music. My influences now though, would include, Colbie Caillat, Sara Bareilles, Alicia Keys, & Taylor Swift. =]
Q: If you could collaborate with anyone, who would it be?
C: Ooh. That’s a tough question. I’d be so honored to collaborate with ANYONE actually!
Q: Are you doing some shows here and there or have you done any tours at all? If you do decide to do a tour, can I be your tour manager? Hahah
C: Yes, you can! =P Yeah, I’ve been performing here & there around California for the past year, ranging from birthday parties, to a benefit concert at a high school or university, to a coffee house or a church praise event. All my shows have been in California though. I’d love to do a tour & I’ve even gotten offers to perform outside of the state, but I’m currently unavailable to do that at the moment.
Q: What is a typical day for Cathy Nguyen?
C: My typical day usually consists of me sitting in front of my computer for hours checking updates & comments on all the social networking websites, responding to performance emails, & then end up being late to school or work, coming home from work/school & pretty much start doing the same thing all over again. haha! & definitely when I have the chance to, I hang out with my friends.
Q: Do you believe having your YouTube account, Twitter and Facebook Fan Page has helped you connect more with your fans or listeners?
C: Yes of course! All these social networking sites have allowed me to connect & talk to my supporters. I read them all and I try to respond back to everyone, but it does get overwhelming for me. I’ve been so blessed & I am so grateful for all the love & support I have. I really appreciate it!
Q: Some of your video covers have included your friends as well; do you see yourself being more as a soloist or with a band?
C: I love singing & performing with other people because I’m so self-conscious & I know that when I sing with other people, the attention isn’t all on me. But if I had to choose, I would probably see myself as being more of a soloist though, either that or with one other person. I don’t see myself in a band, although, that’d be pretty interesting!
Q: What are you listening to these days and who would you suggest my readers start listening to, besides you of course!
C: I used to listen to a lot of the artists on the radio, but honestly these days, I know so little of those outside music. I listen to more of my friends’ music than anyone else actually. I would for sure suggest anyone to listen to their music! AJ Rafael, Passion, Gabe Bondoc, Melissa Polinar & Jane Lui, are just a few of the people I’ve been inspired by. They are amazing, really. They really make you appreciate true music.
Q: Where can we expect to see you next Cathy?
C: Well, you can probably see me next on a YouTube video! haha. Other than that, I have a few shows lined up for the next couple of months. All that information will be updated soon on my Myspace music page.
Check out more of Cathy’s videos on her YouTube account page here