One of the silver linings about 2020 is that it has been a year where hear at Darkus where we
have been able to connect with a number of incredible artists around the world.
Recently we were able to take a virtual trip over to Australia the home country of Australian singer-songwriter, GRAACE who on 19th November 2020, released her brand new single, You Do You, the first release to be shared from her forthcoming EP which comes out in 2021.
Having had a very productive few months as a whole, GRAACE has really shown her strengths as an artist especially when it comes to songwriting, taking the rawness and vulnerability that comes with music, and taking it by the horns to produce something which is both empowering and relatable.
Having heard the single myself as well as the very cool music video that comes with it, I was excited to catch up with GRAACE herself to find out more.
A huge honour to welcome you to Darkus – how have the past few weeks been treating you, and what has been keeping you smiling? Why thank you! The past few weeks have been treating me well. It's been really up and down during Covid but releasing new music again and having fun with the build up has been a big positive for me. Congratulations on the brand new single which comes out on 19th November. As it has got closer what has been going through your mind as the world prepares to listen to it for the first time? If I'm being completely honest, I've had no expectations and haven't put too much thought into it dropping at all (best for my mental health). BUT It is the fastest turn over for a song being written, recorded and released which feels like the most natural progression for a song I've had for a few years! I'm just living in the moment and just happy for whoever wants to listen to it.
The single comes with a very cool music video – what was it like being able to combine your two great loves – music and skateboarding?
Amazing! I haven't done too much skating since I broke my elbow before an international tour with Hayden James in 2017 so never thought about putting it in a video, but it felt so good to spark that love of skateboarding again. I picked it up again naturally when I was up the coast with some close friends in Byron Bay. It felt super cool to combine the two things finally! I felt like the effortlessness of picking that hobby back up on holidays and how easily the song wrote itself went hand in hand! It just felt right.
What are your fondest memories of the very first skateboard you owned? The first and only skateboard that I've owned is the skateboard that I used for a little bit of the music video. It was a Sector skateboard which I got when I was like 13 and I remember I used to feel so bad ass bombing down hills….haha. I've never taken it seriously, I'm a massive kook and just love to cruise, but it makes me really happy.
I really love the fact that this is much more than a song, but a body of work which celebrates empowerment, vulnerability and strength within the same breath. Through your eyes how important that as a society we should not be afraid to come face to face with such raw emotions? I've always tried to build my whole artist project under the ideas and projections of honesty and being raw and open which you can tell in my lyricisms. It's something I always promote and I think with all the false things the world has to offer, especially with social media nowadays, it's more important than ever. Digging a little deeper, taking into consideration your career as an artist so far, at what point did you start to recognise your identity, the one which felt most natural and organic to you, starting to shine through? Growing up, I tried to fit into different types of groups and never found my feet until I found my best friend and we would just do our own thing always. We were never bound into stereotypes of high school groups etc. That helped me realise from a pretty young age that being an artist was my outlet and my biggest passion. Writing music is when I feel like the most organic version of myself.
Related to that, how would you summarise what your vision as an artist is, or is it one you are still exploring? ALWAYS developing and exploring. My vision has always been to be organic and real with everyone who listens to my music and to be an outlet for those that maybe can't articulate their emotions. I've carried that with all my songs, happy or sad. You Do You, is ofcourse the first teaser from the brand new EP which comes out next year. Through the process of working on the EP, how has it enabled you to recognise your own strengths as a lyricist whereby the listener is not just listening to a selection of songs, but instead stepping into the narrative that you are trying to share with them? It's made me really think more deeply about the songs that I write and the meaning behind them all. Finding ties on the EP between songs that are about all different types of situations has been really interesting to me. Finding similarities between narratives in my life and patterns. It's made me have faith in my vulnerability and sensitivity because it's what I thrive off as an artist, even though sometimes it makes things harder. When an artist such as yourself all the way from Australia has airplays on the likes of Radio 1 here in the UK as well as other platforms, that must be a pretty special feeling knowing that regardless of where you live, music crosses borders and can be enjoyed and embraced by someone on the other side of the globe?
It's something I've never even thought was possible. It honestly is such a rewarding and surreal feeling. I've always tried not to put expectations onto my art in case certain songs don't reach these crazy goals but of course in the back of my mind it's been a vision. I've always wanted my songs to reach overseas so it can reach new ears and people who maybe need to hear it at the time.
Having said that, I make my music unapologetically and with the idea that you can't please everyone and I'm content with that. So my sound is whatever I feel at the time and if people around the world end up with an appreciation that's just a bonus!
With this being such an exciting and important part of your evolution as an artist, for any new fans just discovering your music for the first time, what would you say to encourage them to be part of your journey?
If you want to listen to an artist who's an open book, probably a little bit too honest for their own good and wants to hear things that maybe you're too scared to say yourself, then jump on board and welcome…haha!
You Do You is available to listen to now! To stay up to date with all the latest news from one of Australia's exciting emerging artists visit @graacemusic on Instragram, Twitter & Facebook.
Article By Thushara