Kay Day – The Brilliance Behind Her Bedlam

Brash, unapologetic, and over the top.

Kay Day is all of these things.

She’s also a bipolar advocate, who’s constantly working on her craft, and recently turned an ugly situation into something beautiful for NYC’s indie artists.

Originally from Louisville, KY, Kay Day has spent the past 13 years calling NYC home, and her just-released album, Reasons NOT to be Famous – which spans the gamut from pop punk, to her own unique sleaze-infused brand of hip-hop – surpassed 30k streams in its first two weeks on Spotify.

“That’s really crazy for me,” she says, looking at the stat on her phone as she sits in an LES coffee shop, “That’s so special to me, actually. I’ve never gotten past like 14,000 streams because I don’t promote my shit on Spotify, so that’s so cool.”

Spotify isn’t the only place where she’s receiving love. On NY Drill Official’s Instagram page her song “GED / NEW YORK STRIPPER,” which is her diss of Lil’ Dicky’s friend GaTa, who stole thousands of dollars from her, has racked up tens of thousands of views.

Kay Day’s live shows are some of the wildest imaginable, and her crowd is wonderfully rowdy, nearly matching her on-stage energy.

Off stage, Kay Day describes herself as a tomboy. Sitting in the coffee shop, wearing an oversized shirt, and baseball cap – a far different look than many of her photoshoots – there’s a good chance the people who subscribe to her on Playboy, or patronize the club where she dances, might not even recognize her.

Everyday Kay Day, however, is a wildly fascinating person. I discovered this during our conversation, as she discussed being bipolar, and sober, as well as the legendary comedian she counts as an influence, and how she flipped having thousands of dollars stolen from her by GaTa into a non-profit business helping NYC-based indie artists.

Every time I mention your name to someone who knows you, the reaction is, “She’s totally out of her mind, but I love her.” Is that the appropriate response? 

I would say, yeah.

I think that a lot of people, they hate me before they meet me.

I’ve played with this one band, Prom Juice, they opened up for me, and I just remember they met me in the green room, and they were like, “Oh, you’re like a bro.” They didn't know, because I sing about sucking dick, and all this shit, so they just didn't know.

You just have to meet me, and you’ll love me.

You are super open about your life. On stage, in-between all the madness, you talk about being bipolar, having been an addict, and now being sober. When did you become comfortable revealing so much of yourself? 

I think just so much has happened to me, I’ve had really traumatizing experiences, and I’ve been fucked over so much, and I think that by me being open – because no one else I know really is this open ever – it’ll maybe help other people feel like they’re not alone, and when they see me talk about being bipolar, and me talking about sobriety, and how I still struggle with it, that they will not be as afraid.

I’ll cry on Instagram. I will bawl my eyes out online, and be like, I am sad, or I’m happy, or fuck you, because I think more people should show their emotions. They’re scared to because society just makes it that way.

With those two things, sobriety, and bipolar disorder, those are things that don’t get talked about all that often. 

Right, yeah. I mean, it’s hard. People feel embarrassed sometimes talking about it. There’s nothing to be embarrassed about. You just have to live with it.

I’ve even met a lot of rappers recently who are telling me, “I’m bipolar. I’ve never told anybody that,” like they’re embarrassed by it. There’s nothing to be embarrassed about. Embrace it, and don’t make excuses for it.

I never say, “I did this because I’m bipolar.” Maybe a little bit, but you still are in control of your life.

It’s nothing you asked for. 

It’s nothing you asked for, dude.

I used to say sorry all the time. Like, oh, I’m sorry, I’m sorry. Stop apologizing for things that you can’t control.

I just want to be open. I want to let people know that they’re not alone, because I’ve felt alone most of my fucking life.

Man, I’m being real today, aren't I?

Yeah, and I appreciate that. You said you’ve felt alone most of your life, but it seems like now you’re gathering up your own tribe through being so open. 

Yeah, every day people keep telling me, “You’re the most unapologetic, authentic person I’ve ever seen online,” and I’m like, yeah bitch, I am.

I feel like you have to be really smart to put together a live show as over the top as yours. I mean, this past Valentine’s Day eve you sang Frankie Valli’s “Can’t Take My Eyes Off You” to a bag of fake cocaine. So what are you secretly studying when we’re not looking? 

Honestly, I’m glad that you asked that, because you get it.

Andy Kaufman.

I remember when I saw Man on the Moon, I started researching Andy Kaufman, and I was like, oh, my God, I’m kind of like that without even knowing who he is.

I feel like my life is a satire, and I think about experiences, I think about stuff that I’ve always wanted to do, and then I just try to get away with it. And I really don't give a fuck what people think.

Sometimes people don’t like it. Like, I once played “Little Shop of Horrors” for Bowery Ballroom. I came out as the dentist, and started singing “Little Shop of Horrors” in front of the biggest crowd I’ve ever had.

But yeah, I study Andy Kaufman.

The Bloodhound Gang is another huge influence on me. Jimmy Pop, and the Bloodhound Gang. (Jimmy Pop), if you ever see who I am, please fucking marry me, and fuck me. Jesus Christ, you’re my soulmate.

I’ll tag him when I post this on social media to see if we can make that happen. Speaking of which, you’re also super open about your sexuality, even going as far as posting on Facebook that it’s NOT weird to follow you on Playboy. 

Right, exactly dude.

Think about it this way, I get maybe 50 to 120 DMs a day from people trying to fuck me.

If you know me, I’m mainly a tomboy, I was just born looking like a goddamn Playboy bunny.

So I look like this, and people annoy the shit out of me about the way I look, and they judge me for the way I look so much that I was like – I might as well make money on it, too. Because I have no shame, and it’s not embarrassing. In my mind, I’m a tomboy.

Moving to your music, your just-released album is Reasons NOT to be Famous. Talk to me about that title. What inspired it? 

Well, I’ve been fucked over my whole life, especially by the industry. So it’s like, I do not care to be famous anymore, so here’s some reasons … but they’re not real reasons, except for maybe one, or two.

I am the most famous not famous person that I know, and that is why I put it on there.

Musically, the album is like visiting every stage at Warped Tour, because you have pop punk, you have a sleazy brand of hip-hop, almost like a throwback to Millionaires, but cranked up to eleven … 

Word! Yes, you get it! Yes!

What were some of your musical goals when you were putting the album together? Because I don’t think you were just picking and choosing random songs from your catalogue. 

No, I wasn’t. I wasn’t even planning on making this an album, because everyone's like, “You’ve got to release singles, and that’s how it goes viral. That’s how you get streams,” and I was like, I don’t give a fuck about streams, homie. I give a fuck about what I’m doing, and none of my shit sounds alike. I have all these songs, so I’m putting it out.

I want to make a video for all of them.

I love making videos, and I want to show it. I want Bill Nye the Science Guy in “NERDS.” That’s my fucking goal. When I say, “I’d bang Bill Nye The Science Guy,” I would love to fake fuck Bill Nye The Science Guy.

Then I just want people to know that they’re not alone, and to not be scared to put shit out. Don’t be scared to not be good. I don’t care if I’m good. I know this shit isn’t motherfucking the best. It’s not like some amazing thing, but all I know is that it made me feel better writing it.

So I just want people to not feel alone, and I think it’s actually working.

On the song “GED / New York Stripper” you wrote about the now infamous GaTa incident. He of the FXX TV series Dave, starring Lil’ Dicky. For those who don’t know what happened, give the CliffsNotes version, and let everyone know if there’s been a resolution. 

There has not been a resolution.

CliffsNotes – I was a huge fan of that television show (Dave). I saw GaTa on it. He’s a bipolar person.

I reached out to him after (my song) “Barbie” came out. We talked a lot. Long story short, we made a song together.

He did not show up for a music video that he made me pay for, and pay for his trip for. He made me Zelle him all this money for the video, and his trip. Never showed up, never paid me back, and made fun of me online for it, so I called him the actual fuck out, because I’m a baddie, and he didn’t think I was going to blow up. Well, bitch, I’m going to blow up, and in your face motherfucker. I’m bigger than you.

He’s no bipolar advocate, I’ll tell you that.

It’s really messed up that he used that as a way to connect. 

It’s more so telling millions of people how you’re helping out other artists.

I mean, I don’t know how dark you want this interview to go, but to be honest, and I have to be truthful about this, I relapsed after this shit. You saw me when I was sober, struggling with shit, doing fake drugs on the stage, but I was sober. I relapsed after that. I really relapsed. I tried to overdose. It was horrible.

I was in the news, and I just thought – everyone sucks. Everyone that I’ve ever looked up to has hurt me, and even though I didn’t even know him that well personally, I mean, I still talked to him. I looked up to him as someone who made it as a bipolar person, and was helping me out, and he didn’t give one fucking fuck, and he just makes fun of me online, but he really fucked with the wrong person.

When nothing happened to me when I tried to like literally end my life, I was like, alright, well then I have to do this shit for all my friends who have died, for everyone who’s tried, and hasn’t (died), so fuck me being famous, I’ll be fucking infamous motherfuckers, and I’m gonna go guns blazing, and I will call out whoever gets in my way.

I don’t care if people say I suck. I don’t care if people say this is bad, or this is good. Nope, I did it. I like it. I don’t care what you think anymore, and it’s working for me, so no one can bring me down.

He can suck my fucking dick.

You want someone to look up to that’s bipolar? Maybe I’m not a role model for kids, but maybe for your mind, and sticking up for yourself, you can look up to me.

It sounds like that is a resolution, even though not financially speaking. 

Yeah. Mentally I’m in the best place that I have been in years. I’m sober. I haven’t fucked … oh, sorry, we’re in a coffee shop, and I’m screaming I haven't fucked. That’s so funny. I haven’t fucked for like 53 days.

I’m also a love addict. That’s not talked about a lot, but it’s a real thing, love addiction. I’m in therapy for it actually, but I haven’t dated, or flirted … I did flirt with this porn star the other day named Jesse Pony. Shout out to her. She’s dope. I met her the other day. She was hot. I flirted with her, and made out with her, but I have not had sex with anybody in like 50 something days.

Finally, you started a non-profit video company. Tell everyone about it. 

Okay, so after the GaTa stuff happened to me, I was sick of being fucked over, and I realized that I don’t know how to help people, but I want to help people.

I had gone to film school at The New School in New York, and I have a Sony FX3 cinema camera, so I started a company called Botch Video.

Once a week I go out in New York, and I film any independent artist for free. Professional quality, pro videos, at least one minute to two minutes. I edit them professionally, and I put them on Instagram, and send it to them totally for free.

So if you’re an artist in NYC, and want a free video, just one, stay humble, but I got you all.

So this is the ultimate resolution from that whole situation. 

It helped me.

It helped my depression filming people.

All these are independent artists. They deserve to be seen, and because of algorithms, and because of celebrities, sometimes these people, they’re the most talented people I’ve ever seen sing, rap, everything, and they’ve never even recorded professionally.

I just want them to be seen.


For more Kay Day, follow her on social media (Instagram, TikTok), and check out Botch Video on Instagram.


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