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Ivy Levan Brings Us Behind the Scenes of ‘Hang Forever’ [EXCLUSIVE VIDEO]

Ivy Levan’s cat is her best friend, and she wanted her to come to life in her ‘Hang Forever’ video. You’ll see what we mean when you watch the cute (but kind of creepy) exclusive behind-the-scenes clip above.

Though the song is actually based on a bond between Ivy and one of her human friends — “We have [tattoos of] nooses on our middle fingers … we wanted to hang forever,” she says — Vamp (the cat) became the inspiration for the visual treatment of the track.

‘Hang Forever’ is a long time coming for Ivy, who had her first taste at being an entertainer when she was just a kid singing a Whitney Houston song in a talent show in Arkansas, where she grew up. “I did my first talent show when I was probably seven years old, and I won,” she tells PopCrush. “And I was up against like 21-year-olds and 30-year-olds. And it kind of gave a boost of confidence. I was like, I guess I’m pretty good at this.”

“I was kind of rebellious black sheep,” the singer adds. “Growing up, I never really fit in … I always wanted bigger things that were not available to me in Arkansas.”

What’s a girl with big dreams to do? Well, Ivy got kicked out of high school, but used that as an opportunity to get out of town and make a name for herself in Los Angeles, where she found work as a model before getting signed to a record label to pursue her real passion of music. Things didn’t go so well at first. “I was pretty young and I didn’t really have a voice of my own,” Ivy explains. “I got pretty much shelved because they didn’t really know what to do with me. They wanted me to be either a ballad Celine Dion or a Britney Spears or whatever they could think of.” After taking about three years off from music, another opportunity came her way — and judging by the catchy, unique sound of ‘Hang Forever,’ things have a way of working themselves out.

‘Hang Forever’ is a pop song — just try to not have that chorus stuck in your head all day after you hear it! — but it has a bit of an edge. Ivy refers to her music as swamp-hop, which she describes as “basically a visual image of what the sound is. You think of a swamp, you think of dirty and gritty … I grew up around swamps and creeks and the Ozark Mountains, so there’s tons of wilderness and s— like that. I guess my voice has always not been extremely happy and bubbly. I have a very low voice. I had an alto voice, and all the other girls had soprano voices.”

Get a closer look at the making of the video above, and then enjoy the full music video below. And if her striking look catches your eye, you can thank her love of Tarte makeup (“very light but still very vibrant, and the pigments are very strong”), her signature red lip (which she’s been wearing ever since she could get into her mom’s makeup drawer) and her impressive talent at never wearing anything lower than five-and-a-half inch heels.

Watch the Full ‘Hang Forever’ Video

Next: See More Artists to Watch in 2014

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