Student at Stanford and an up-and-coming musician Taylor Grey shows her ambition through her desire to pursue school and music simultaneously. She started writing songs when she was twelve and then taught herself to play guitar and piano, skills that have allowed her more creative control over her sound. After releasing her two part debut EP, “Mine of Mind I and II,” she toured as the opening act on Jacob Whitesides’ “Lovesick” tour. After performing with Whitesides, she joined the Summer Set as an opening act on their “Made For You” tour. After a busy year of touring, Grey worked on and released her debut album, “Space Case,” which contained features from The Vamps’ Brad Simpson and Spencer Kane. After dropping her album, she toured with Jacob Whitesides on his “Basically Happy” tour and a few select dates on O-Town’s “I Love the 90s” tour. She released a single, “Back To Bite,” and her newest work, her EP ‘Grey’.
Unheard Gems: How did you start in music and how would you describe yourself as an artist?
Taylor Grey: Music was the only thing I liked as a kid so I stuck with it. I would describe my sound as left of center pop! Pop, but with some extra sad girl vibes.
Unheard Gems: It’s been really cool to see you progress as an artist...I started listening to you with your single ‘Never Woulda Letcha’ and you had already released two EP’s by that time and since then your first album, ‘Space Case’ and many more singles have come out. How have you seen yourself grow as an artist and do you think there have been any major pivotal moments on your evolution?
Taylor Grey: Ah thank you so much! I think there have been so many incremental steps in my development, but it wasn’t until this past year that I figured out I needed to take a break and find myself before I could put anything worthy out into the ether.
Unheard Gems: What inspires your music, generally, and what is your process like when it comes to recording and producing your music.
Taylor Grey: GREY was inspired by my emotions mainly, and I wrote all of the songs in the same room with Oli, my producer, who I’ve grown very comfortable with, so it was a natural process just letting my feelings out in the air.
Unheard Gems: On your album you worked with Spencer Kane and Brad Simpson on ‘Miami’ and ‘Fallin’, respectively, what were those collaborations like and any more you are hoping for or planning on in the future?
Taylor Grey: They were so fun! I actually just did a couple shows with the Vamps in September which was incredible. I love collaborations, my dream would be to collaborate with BeBe Rexha because she’s iconic.
Unheard Gems: I love your newest release, ‘Warning’, which came out on the 26th of October, can you tell us a bit about this song and the inspiration for it. It does seem different than most of your other music which is more upbeat - this takes a new direction which is really amazing to see from you.
Taylor Grey: Thank you! It’s about feeling too damaged or messed up to be lovable. It’s a very pervasive feeling in my life. The chorus is “My love is like thin ice” which pretty much sums it up. Tread lightly or drown I guess, because I can’t support you, I can’t even support myself.
Unheard Gems: Any big projects coming up for you at the moment we should keep an eye out for?
Taylor Grey: GREY coming out November 16th!
Unheard Gems: I have to ask as a fellow Bay Area girl, how does being in the Bay and growing up here affect your music if at all.
Taylor Grey: Yeah, it really did. I actually went to SHP and transferred after my sophomore year because I felt invisible there. My experience of being an outcast there really influenced me as a person. Some people really value an inflated social hierarchy and thrive within it. That wasn’t ever my thing.
Unheard Gems: I think it is also amazing that you are getting a major in Neuroscience at Stanford University at the same time as launching your music career. Why neuro and how do you balance your two lives? (Does what you study ever influence the way you think about your music or music in general?)
Taylor Grey: I think college in general is way more influential to my music than what I’m majoring in. But I’ve always thought psychology is fascinating.
Unheard Gems: Any advice for young woman starting out in the music industry that you could share with us?
Taylor Grey: I’m nowhere near “making it” to be in a position to give people advice, but I guess if I could go back in time and tell myself something it would be “stop being impatient. Your time will come, spend more time learning about yourself before putting it out into the world.”
Unheard Gems: If you could recommend to us another artist you think deserves more recognition in the music industry who would you recommend and why?
Taylor Grey: Lauren Aquilina!!!! She was the first artist I ever listened to that made me want to write the way I do.
Unheard Gems: Lastly, for all of our readers, where can they find you and your music?
Taylor Grey: Follow me on instagram @iamtaylorgrey ! Technically my other socials are the same handle but I don’t ever use them lol. And spotify, apple music, all that biz.
Listen to her new EP – ‘Grey’: https://taylorgrey.lnk.to/GreyEP
Photo credit to Claire Leahy
Interview by Hannah Schneider