Big news for Cris Cab, whose song "Liar Liar" saw north of 27 million views on YouTube as of this post: The 21-year-old Miami native will be the opening act for his mentor Pharrell Williams during the upcoming Dear G I R L tour. So if the name didn't ring a bell for you, it may very well enter prime buzz territory soon.
Before his most recent performance (he sang a handful of songs at a presentation for a new menswear brand called Vera Largo at New York's James Hotel this week), we talked with the young crooner about his love of sunglasses, how he stays fit when he's on the road, and what it's like to work with music's modern King Midas.
DETAILS: How did you and Pharrell meet?
CRIS CAB: I met him when I was around 15 years old through a family friend in Miami. They were nice enough to bring me to the studio to play some of the music I'd made. Back then I was just producing my own [stuff] in my bedroom. A year later it got back to him that I was making some good music. He brought me in again and started showing me a lot about writing and producing. His musical knowledge and wisdom gives you such a leg up.
DETAILS: Your music crosses genres—what sound are you connected to the most?
CRIS CAB: The most natural, most instinctual, is reggae. I spent a lot of time growing up in the Bahamas and it was the first music I discovered on my own. I found it and from the age of 8 or 9 it really inspired me. I didn't understand any of the lyrics, but I understood the positive feeling and the good vibes. And from there I began to play the guitar and sing and write.
DETAILS: Do you have a favorite song on the new album?
CRIS CAB: A song that I'm happy made it onto the album is "All I Need Is You." Because I got to work with great friends and the horn section on the hook is really amazing to me—the live trombones and trumpets made it come alive.
DETAILS: You fought for it to be on there?
CRIS CAB: Definitely! It was one of those songs that people were on the fence about but at the end of the day, it's a song that I really enjoy and it's important that my fans hear it.
DETAILS: Before diving into music every day, what's your morning routine like?
CRIS CAB: I go for a run first—or I should. I'm getting mad at myself already for not doing that. And then I have a cup of coffee. Then I play guitar for a few hours to see if I come up with a song or two. I'll jot down a little idea on my phone and head to the studio to begin creating the song.
DETAILS: What's the last style purchase you made?
CRIS CAB: I just bought some Thom Browne sunglasses. I really enjoy them—they're cool, stylish, and really lightweight. I bought them at Colette in Paris.
DETAILS: You like Colette?
CRIS CAB: I think Colette's amazing because it has a little bit of everything. It has shoes, it has clothing, it has gadgets, and it has watches. You can buy a $50,000 watch or a $10 paper clip.
DETAILS: Final question: Who are your style icons?
CRIS CAB: Of course I look up to Pharrell, but someone else I really look up to is Lenny Kravitz. He just wears whatever he wants and whatever he's cool and comfortable in, and I'm kind of the same way. I dress very comfortably. I'm not trying to wear anything too crazy.
• • •