Meet Malibu: Cait Crawford

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Cait Crawford at her day job as CVS Pharmacy cashier

It may not be the most glamorous job in the world—cashier at CVS—but Cait Crawford switches it up every Thursday night as the house entertainer at Casa Escobar, where she transforms herself from drab drugstore employee to showcase her talents behind a guitar and microphone.

Originally from College Station, Texas, Crawford relocated to Malibu in July and quickly found work at the local CVS. She instantly bonded with the community—many who pay a weekly visit chat with the amiable Crawford, who rings up purchases from the mundane to the intimate. 

But Crawford’s passion is singing and playing guitar. In recent years, she’s been focusing on a possible career in music, playing every chance she gets. 

“This has been my hobby for years,” she shared. “My boyfriend said, ‘You’ve got to put yourself out there.’ Some of the people I work with at CVS heard my recordings.” They, too, urged the young woman to start playing in public. After eating at Casa Escobar—which doubles as a music venue—she decided to give it a go and gave her tape to the manager.

Francisco Castro, Casa Escobar general manager, said he likes to support local talent. 

“I heard her the first time and she was really good. People love her,” Castro said. “You can see people clapping for her, so we agreed to have her every Thursday here. It’s been great every time. She’s growing and her music is getting better and better. Having something here during the week is great. There’s not a lot of places that have this type of music during the week. It’s something good for dinner. It’s nice and relaxing. We love her.”

Crawford hopes to one day make a career of performing. 

“I would love something to come out of it,” Crawford said. “I want it to be an organic experience. I enjoy playing music. I don’t want to waste the gifts that were given to me.” 

The 25 year old is writing her own material, but for now is focusing on playing her favorite classic rock tunes from her idols: Neil Young, Joni Mitchell and bands Creedence Clearwater Revival and Fleetwood Mac. “These wonderful artists who have been heroes for me since I started listening to music,” she said. “My parents introduced me to this music and I ran with it.” 

She actually ran into Neil Young at a local Malibu restaurant one night and described “freaking out a little bit,” but did not approach the legendary artist. “These celebrities are people. I admire their work and treasure it, but it’s best to just let them live their lives. This is the perfect place to do that. I like to give people their privacy.”

And, what about her day job?

“I love CVS,” Crawford said. “It’s a very interesting job because of the people I’ve met. I never would have thought I would encounter some of the local celebrities that live here. Being known by name in a community like Malibu was never on my radar. This is the best. Locals are very sweet to me.” She’s told a few customers about her nighttime gig. One of those customers became a friend who gave Crawford a spectacular gift to help her on her musical journey—a Martin guitar. 

“I needed a guitar for my first gig here,” Crawford described. “I had one, but not that plugged in.” Martins, she commented, are her favorite instruments. “A lot of the greats play them,” she mentioned, “like Stephen Stills.” 

“You do what you have to do for work. I needed a job. CVS called. I realize it doesn’t show my full personality, but it’s given me a chance to put myself out there,” she said. “I try to help the locals. People come in once a week. I see them and get to know them.” Performing, however, Crawford says lets more of her personality shine through. “I like to perform—make people happy by singing. You have to do both when you’re starting out. I’m grateful how things have gone.” 

Crawford, who has a bachelor’s degree in psychology, described the weeks after the November fire as difficult. 

“I care about the people who come into the store,” she said. “Some lost everything. I listened. That’s how I am. I put my heart into everything I do even if it is being a cashier at CVS. I make the best of it. I enjoy it,” she said, before admitting: “I don’t want to do it forever. CVS is a job to make ends meet, but music is my life.” 

Meet Malibu is an occasional feature series profiling interesting members of our community who either work or live (or both!) here in Malibu.

If you know someone in town you think belongs in the series, let us know by sending an email to editorial@malibutimes.com.