Even if you're not a fan of pop music, chances are you've rocked out to a Meghan Trainor song. In the past couple of years, the 22-year-old singer/songwriter has had seven chart toppers, and three of them – "All About That Bass," "No," and "Lips Are Movin" – are nearing anthem status. Besides heavy radio play, they're racking up millions of page views and downloads and are featured in commercials for everything from diapers to laptops. Trainor's success is showing no signs of slowing down, as her sophomore album, Thank You, debuted at number three on the Billboard 200 chart.
It was my birthday, and they wanted to freak me out, I guess.
Her mass appeal is easy to understand. Trainor's songs are wildly catchy, with bouncy hooks, clever lyrics, and a rich sound rooted in doo-wop, hip hop, Caribbean, and 90s pop. Of course, it doesn't hurt that she's incredibly likeable – both onstage and off – as we saw firsthand when the Grammy Award winner sat down for a one-on-one with comedian Kathy Griffin in New York City for Backstage with Citi. Tucked away in the luxe Club Room of the Soho Grand Hotel, and surrounded by poster-sized black and white photos of Hollywood legends, the women had a no-holds-barred conversation about everything from musical inspirations to backstage antics to the real reason behind the name of her debut album. Here are five of our favorite moments.
1. Kathy Griffin: What is the craziest thing that's ever happened to you backstage at one of your concerts?
Meghan Trainor: Jingle Ball, my first year, my management sent me a – what was it? – a Tina Turner impersonator.
Are you sure it wasn't Tina?
I thought for a second it might have been, and then I was like, Oh, she's carrying a boombox. Who is this girl?
I love that, but why did they send you a Tina Turner impersonator?
It was my birthday, and they wanted to freak me out, I guess. It was very uncomfortable.
2. We hear a lot about musicians having crazy riders. What's in yours? Mine's not that crazy. Mine's Welch's gummies….
OK, that's a little crazy.
Yeah? …. And then Nutri Grain bars. Sometimes I get bagels, and I don't even ask for them.
3. You named your first album Title. Were you tired or burnt out or lazy from songwriting and couldn't give your first album a real title?
Yes! That's actually it. The label was emailing me every five minutes. What's your title, what's your title? I don't have a title! And then I saw on my album I had a song named "Title," and I was like, there you go. There's your title.
Did they think you put a lot of thought into that? They're like, Yes. Let the master work.
(laughs) She's a genius.
Yep. She's done it again.
When really, I was lazy and I panicked.
4. [Referencing Trainor's fall during a recent late-night talk show appearance]: Is it easier to perform on the floor?
No (laughs). It was easier being down there, though. That's why I stayed there. This is comfier. If I go back there, I'll probably just go under again.
I thought that was a good plan. And also, it could be a trend. If you were going to perform a duet on the floor with anyone, who would it be?
I'm very flattered. I thought you'd say a hot guy.
5. You have a song on your album called "Hopeless Romantic." What's your ideal first date?
Oh man. Well, they pay.
Thank you! And by the way, women's lib doesn't mean the guy doesn't ever pay.
Yeah, it's weird and it's awkward. That's why I'm single.