When Molly Fiorentino and Kylie Hartman say they want to make the world a better place through their music, it is more than a clever stab at marketing: it looks, feels, and sounds like the rock hard truth (umm, pun a little intended). Molly and Kylie are the real deal. They are the pop-positive duo of Steady Rush, and these girls from Boise, Idaho are proof that living your values and connecting to a larger purpose can align with making your dreams a reality. Molly and Kylie combine their love of blues/rock and dance/pop to create memorable tunes that leave you feeling all the feelings, but it is their willingness to be unflinchingly authentic and even vulnerable that makes them so unique. “The more open we are, the more we can connect to people through our music,” says Molly. “Allowing myself to be broken and poured out, to choose to be vulnerable, has been challenging, but worth it.”
If you could describe yourself in one hashtag, what would it be?
Tell us about a girl in your life who rocks.
Kylie: Krista Van Allen. She got a degree in Biology in college and then realized her true passion in life was to work in the entertainment industry to change the way that young girls view themselves. She's been pursuing this passion ever since, even if it has meant choosing a path with more resistance and unknowns. She also left an extremely toxic relationship a few years ago when it would have been far more convenient to stay. She ROCKS.
Molly: Kylie Hartman. Since I have known her, she has taken the road less traveled and worked hard to pursue what she believes she was created to do. Kylie has an incredible passion for justice. I don't think anything gets her more fired up than witnessing injustice in any given situation. I've seen her grow so much over the past few years, which encourages me to grow as well. She is smart, funny, and loyal down to her core. She saw me at my worst, and loved me through it all. I could not ask for a better friend. Her strength of character and her constant motivation for life keep me grounded in the best way possible.
What are your dreams/goals/ambitions?
Kylie: To inspire change in the world in whatever I do. In my case, I happen to have talent in music, so I hope to use it to impact the world using that medium.
Molly: To connect with people through music and through the hope that the world can be (and is becoming) a better place. I want to be an example of true female strength within the music industry. In doing so, I want to help women realize the power and freedom that comes from knowing who you are.
What are you most proud of?
Kylie: I am most proud of the fact that I have walked away from huge monetary opportunities for the sake of ethics and morality. Although it was the hardest thing I've ever had to do, I can look back and tell my children one day that I chose the more difficult path for the sake of what was right.
Molly: I am most proud of--or I should say thankful for--the times that I have forgiven the people in my life who have wronged me. Resentment and hatred are such powerful, ugly forces. I'm glad that at a young age, I've learned the value of letting go, healing, and moving on.
What piece of advice changed your life?
Kylie: In one of the hardest times of my life, my mom once told me that I had to remember that "it wouldn't always feel this way." In essence, time heals. Even though that is so simple, in that moment, and in tough moments since, it always comes to mind that no matter how much pain you feel, you can ALWAYS bounce back from it.
Molly: Although this piece of advice didn't come directly from a person's mouth, it's something that I learned right after high school. I try to always look for and uphold the humanity in other people. If I don't look for that basic, common ground, then it's far too easy to devalue others and in the process, degrade my own humanity. I think it's all about empathy and desiring to truly "know" each other.
Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
Kylie: I see myself partnering my music with non-profits that are helping people all over the world. I also see myself finding and developing up-and-coming artists that want to use their music for similar reasons.
Molly: I hope that I will have traveled and performed internationally quite a bit by then. I love experiencing other cultures, and I really enjoy directly connecting with all sorts of people. I'm a big believer in collaborating, so it would be great to have established an ever-growing network of friends and resources to serve various causes. I'd love to teach people younger than me the things I have learned at that point in life, and I hope that I'll never stop learning. I would love to have some sort of involvement in combatting the mindsets that perpetuate sexploitation and human trafficking.
What is the number one item on your bucket list?
Kylie: I would love to go play music for a rescue home for girls that have been saved from human trafficking.
Molly: To meet my roster of women who have indirectly impacted and intrigued me over the years. Regardless of their celebrity status, I think it would be amazing to speak with each of them---Nicole Scherzinger, Maggie Q, Angelina Jolie, and Jennifer Lawrence.
Who has been the biggest female influence in your life and why?
Kylie: My mom for sure. Ever since I can remember she has been there for me to talk through any issues I had. She is truly a super mom. She was at every performance or game I ever had, and made me feel incredibly loved throughout my childhood. I think because of this, I turned out to be the confident driven woman that I am today. Of course she had her flaws and struggles just like everyone else. But she NEVER gives up on becoming a better person in life, and that is really inspiring.
Molly: Her name is Sheila. She is the mother of a girl I went to school with. At 13 years old, I was very angry and very hurt by a slew of family issues. Sheila identified with me and gently nudged me along the right path. She encouraged me to forgive and channel all of my passion (both positive and negative) into seeking the Truth. Because of her willingness to talk about life's darker things, I was able to open up and trust her during one of the most critical phases of my life. I love that she is rough around the edges. She is flawed and real and has always been transparent with me. I have a feeling that I would be a very different person now if she hadn't showed up and welcomed me into her home.
What is the biggest risk you’ve ever taken and what did you learn from it?
Kylie: I think the biggest risk I've ever taken would be deciding to pursue music as a career. I did well in school and had my college plans all mapped out to be a teacher. But just as I started college there was this inkling that I should be pursuing music. Music is a terrifying business to get into as a young female, and there are definitely no guarantees. I learned that taking risks isn't always a guarantee for a reward, but it is necessary to take the risk to become who you are meant to be in life. But I am so glad I decided to take that risk.
Molly: Moving away from my hometown for a second time. The first time that I moved away, things went terribly and I came back extremely wounded. For my recent move to Denver, I had to choose to make myself vulnerable again to new surroundings and people. I am still learning to open myself up to all that comes with building a new life in a new city. I read a quote by Brene Brown the other day…"Vulnerability is the birthplace of creativity, innovation, and change." I've been experiencing the reality of those words every day since I moved. It's well worth it to open up again.
Why are you THAT GIRL?
Kylie: I am THAT girl because I believe that the world can be a better place for both men and women, and I strive to make that a reality every day.
Molly: I am THAT girl because I know who I am. As a woman, I know where my identity and inherent value comes from, and I channel it to serve all that is good in the world.
*Interview conducted and compiled by Sheila Moeschen, IATG Senior Editor