Keepin’ Up With Kaleena Harper


BE Entertained Magazine recently caught up with artist Kaleena Harper (formerly of Dirty Money) to ask her a few questions about her relationship with Puff and Dawn after Dirty Money and her HOT! new mixtape “Chambers of Diaries”

BE MAG: Hey Kaleena!! How are you?

Kaleena: Here driving in this Atlanta Traffic!

BE MAG:  LOL…yes the infamous Atlanta traffic.

Kaleena: Yes

BE MAG: Ok, so let’s jump right into everything.  Everyone’s excited for this project “Chambers of Diaries”. People have been BEating me down all day to get questions to you…

Kaleena : *chuckles*

BE Mag: So I’m going to go right in and go at you, ok?

Kaleena: Ok, Let’s Go! I’m with it.

BE MAG: Ok, so first things first.  We know that Dirty Money is no longer a group, but people want to know, what the current situation is with you, puff and dawn?

Kaleena: Yeah well me and Puff talk often. He is like my brother you know. Me and dawn don’t really talk as much you know she is doing her thing and I’m doing mine. But like I tell everyone dirty money is one of those things that is gonna BE forever! Puff is never going to pick up two new girls and BE like yeah I wanna do another group.  I wanna do another dirty money, you know what I’m saying so dirty money is FOR LIFE!! Puff is very supportive of what I’m doing in my career and helping me make better decisions on what’s next.  He is very into my music and you know we cool.

So to set the record straight, there is no bad blood between anyone! Everything’s cool, it’s just that everyone is doing their solo thing now?

Kaleena: I mean I ain’t say all that, laughs but I don’t got no BEef with nobody….Today LOL

BE MAG: Ok so “Chambers of Diaries” is the title to your mixtape. Can you explain the inspiration and meaning behind that?

Kaleena: You know what, Chambers of Diaries coming out of the group dirty money, man I had so much to say. You know when you gotta kind of play by the rules for 3 or 4 years and puff is definitely the coach of his football team.  And nothing wrong with that I learned so much being around it. But you know u have to do as he says, like if he wanted to talk about white, green, and purple. We had to figure out how white, green, and purple was gonna fit for us that day and so coming out of the group I was like “ you know I just wanted to take some time and really re-introduce myself to me”, look in the mirror and get to know me again and like write in my diary. So I was writing in my journal and I was like you know I’m going to put music to this stuff. I was writing about how I felt about my husband, and life in general at the time.  You know I wanted to party and have fun. I felt free and that’s what Chambers of Diaries is. The project took so long to do BEcause it was very personal and it’s like my baby. It started out as my personal album and then I was like “you know what” I’m just let the world see what I’m working on cause I’m still working and it was hard letting go some of the records for free but I really wanted to let the world fall into me. So Chamber of Diaries is definitely like journal entries of day-to-day of what was going on BEhind the scenes with dirty money, what was going on after dirty money. Chambers of Diaries is like a window, like look into my window, fall into me, and see what this is and who I am.

BE MAG: Can we get into some of the tracks from the mixtape? , a lot of people have questions and inquires about the songs off of it.

Kaleena: I think we should.

BE MAG: Ok the biggest question I got asked was, what is 6000 sistas?

Kaleena: Ok listen so some friends of mine…you know I party with “the girlz” (laughs) and we always have tea parties and slumber parties and stuff. So one of my friends was talking about how he went to this drag show and he was like the guy who won, ended up winning 10,000 dollars and the guy presenting the money said ” you better come on up here girl and get these 10,000 sistas!” and you know the presidents on money wear  wigs and everything so it was kind of funny *chuckles*. It was a real funny story so I was like OK your right so we just made a song about it and its like kind of an inside joke but that what 6000 sistas means. Just look at a dollar bill and you will know what I mean now.

BE MAG: We see you also get your rap on your remix of “The Motto (freestyle)”. Is that something you always wanted to do?

Kaleena: ALWAYS! Man Always! You know Hip Hop isn’t something that just like fell on my head. I’ve always loved Hip Hop, always loved Wu-Tang, Busta, Missy Elliot, and Lauryn Hill. They were inspirations of then and still today. You Know Lauryn Hill does it best, Missy Elliot was doing you know rapping and singing! In the 90’s, so for people to think or make it seem like it’s this new big thing that’s happening, it’s like no they was doing it back then and BIG. They injected us with all the melodic and experimental things we are doing over top of music. We are the creations of their minds, so I thought it would BE really cool to show people where it all came from and why I did the thing I did and now cause of it how me and missy are talking about doing things. And I can’t wait to build relationships with Lauryn, and Queen Latifah* sings U-N-I-T-Y!!! (Laughs)* You know it’s nothing new nobody is re-inventing the wheel; I’m just trying to do as well as these women who have done it.

BE MAG: Ok, the” Go to Work (remix)” and I have a quote someone asked me to say when asking you about this! “Ask dat H** what da f*#* is she drankin’! “

Kaleena: YES!!!!!!!! I hope you’re drinking Ciroc! Laughs* She betta be drinking Ciroc acting like that or she must not be drinking Ciroc if she acting like that LOL!

BE MAG: So you have written for plenty of artists. Who is on your like wish list of people to work with again or for the first time?

Kaleena: Um, you know what??? I can’t even really say. I mean like maybe Sade, Missy Elliot, I would love to work with those ladies and learn so much from them.  You know right now, You know I think everyone’s had they time, and I’m being honest, it’s time for a new wave of stars and talent to be blessed with the chance to show the world they can do it too. If anything I think some of the older artist should want to work with the newer artist. Diddy did it for me!

BE MAG *laughs OK!  Diddy did it for me!

Kalenna: *laughs Diddy did it for me!

BE MAG: You get a lot of comparisons to Estelle and Grace Jones. How do you feel about that? Are you honored? Have you met either of these ladies?

Kaleena: I love the Grace Jones comparison. I do feel like me and Estelle might have come from the same tribe! LOL Maybe my daddy was off trickin’ in the UK somewhere *laughs*.  But as far as music and style I think we are totally different. I think it’s kind of crazy when you see me in a mall and I got blonde hair and a phat azz and you look like  you’re from another planet and someone is like
“Hey its Estelle!”  LOL. Are you serious? You know what I’m saying! We look nothing alike then but I love her too death too and I think she is a great artist, NO SHADE!

BE MAG: Ok, speaking of your body…The fellas I talk to all said you are built like a stallion!! How do you get your body?

Kaleena: I get it from my MOMMA!!! LOL C’mon LOL you know the song! It really is a blessing you know. I had a kid and god allowed me to keep it all afterwards but eating good and light cardio, I don’t go in go in!

BE MAG: So you still eat all the good foods too?? Chicken? Mac and Cheese???

Kaleena: C’mon BOY! Please yes I eat it all! Collard Greens, neck bones, turkey wings! I can keep going! Stuffing all that! Jamaican yard food! LOL Ox tails! LOL

BE MAG: Ok so what type of visuals and videos do you have in store for us with C.O.D? Or is it a surprise we got to wait for?

Kaleena: YO!!! You guys are going to be so excited. I leave for Geneva in April and will be in Paris shooting too. So between the two cities I’m going to have crazy visuals. And it’s going to be high fashion and arts! You know I love Fashion. So I just want to make sure whatever visuals I put out to have a message! Like I don’t just want to put out a whole bunch of furs, leather, and a whole lotta ass! You know what I’m saying and it BE all about urban. I’m appealing to the artistic worlds and fan base but at the same time definitely want to educate us on some things visually.  You know sometimes us when we see things “us” as in “colored folk” LOL.  We just have to see something is once and we get it and so with my visuals I’m painting a picture and telling a story, you know I’m not going to sing “Pain and Alcohol” and be sitting at starbucks! I think sometimes visuals in videos lose us you know. You see a video and be like it’s nice but don’t have anything to do with the song at all! What is this? Lol, they lose you and it kind of disappoints you.  But I promise yall that like I been telling y’all it’s going to be hot and the visuals are gonna be dope! The visuals we did and released for C.O.D those were just for fun and we were like let’s see what happens but I love them I want to blow them up and hang them in an office. You know I’m going to take my time and make sure it’s good I’m not rushing it .You know it’s a difference in like telling a bitch to go to work then as opposed to a career you know . lol when you working on a career you take your time.

BE MAG: Well we definitely support you and are big fans! I play the album daily!

Kaleena: Really? Well I’m glad you are telling me this! I’m glad you getting your daily vitamins! I mean people have really received and liked this project even further than my knowing and I didn’t know they would love it as much as they did. I mean I know when I made it and how I felt about it I mean I knew I loved it and how it made me feel in the studio late nights with my Grand Marnier, like yo hoping this would work out and people would understand what I’m saying and make it down to earth conversational. Make like we just talking. Being able to say what you want and curse and make that level of connection

BE MAG: GREAT! So the last question I have for you is. What do you want people to walk away with after listening to this COD and what do you want them to know about you that maybe they didn’t before listening to this project?

Kaleena: I mean I want them to know that I have an opinion! I am the opinion. I think that with dirty money it might have gotten lost with people. So they may not have seen it from me I mean they seen that I had one but it was lost. You know Puff was the “dirty” he was the “money” that made dirty money, but if anybody had to be the full definition of dirty money I say I was out of the group. Dawn is from New Orleans and came from Danity Kane and it was a new thing for her to be like yeah she from New Orleans but she definitely isn’t from North Philly per say. So for her to be on tracks like “this and that and f#&* you “you know that was a different thing for her. Same thing with me adjusting to her sound and what puff wanted from us sometimes it was an adjustment. But Last Train to Paris was my baby! That’s my whole sound and everything and not to take away from anyone else in the group cause dawn was in there and writing and contributing too and I LOVE her for all of that! She was like my other half. She was like someone I never met before but could do what I do. But what I want when people walk away with Chambers of Diaries is that Dirty Money was my baby, Last train was my baby! I loved that group I loved everything going on during that time but coming out of that I want folks to know THAT’S ME and I can do it again and again cause I got INK!!!!

About the author

cmarshall has written 67 articles for BE Entertained Magazine

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