In the spotlight – Maisy Grace is a 18 year old Cornish singer-songwriter. Equally comfortable with piano, guitar or bass, Maisy Grace has been making waves around the South West and beyond. Her single ‘I Never Needed Anyone’ was released earlier this month. Her debut album will be out in Spring.
Tell me a little bit about your background. Where did your interest in music come from? Was it something that you always knew you wanted to pursue?
“My whole family has always been into music, from both my parents having it playing all the time to my dad teaching me to play my first ever tiny pink guitar.”
What instruments do you play and do you have a favourite one?
“I play guitar, bass and piano as well as singing. I have over the years tried various instruments which I’ve loved, but none really stuck. I am always down to play more though and am thinking of learning something new I’m just not sure what.”
Have you had vocal lessons, or how did you develop your voice?
“I have had a few different singing teachers, some more helpful than others! I had one who was absolutely amazing and helped me understand technique better than anyone else has before. Mostly I just learn from experience and from singing so much that I work things out for myself.”
What can you tell me about your creative process?
“If I’m being really honest I don’t have much of a set out process. My songs all come from different places and feelings, and so I start in different places.”
Do you have any hobbies that contribute to your musicality?
“One of my main hobbies is surfing, which I find helps me with both inspiration and clearing my head when I’m having a hard time working something out. Many of the songs I’ve written have started off as me humming a tune whilst out in the lineup. I did also do A-Level maths which people say helps with music but I wouldn’t call it much a hobby as I don’t like it very much.”
What inspires you to write songs? Do you take inspiration from other art mediums?
“As I mentioned before, surfing and being in/around the ocean brings me a lot of inspiration. I also have recently been travelling a little bit and I have taken a lot of inspiration from the experiences I gained from my trips.”
If you could travel anywhere, where would it be and why?
“I have done quite a bit of travelling in the last few months, so I think I would like to stay put for a while. But if I wanted to travel anywhere I think I would like to have a look at Australia, or Indonesia, mostly for the surfing and experiences, but if I could do any music out there it would be perfect.”
You’ll be releasing your debut album in April. What can you tell me about the album?
“It’s looking like the album will come out in May and it is all based on true events, things which have happened to me or my friends. It’s being produced by Kouncilhouse who has been a complete genius with every single song. In my opinion, all of the songs fit really well together whilst the songs individually are all very different and unique, which I love and I’m so proud of what we have created.”
What would you say are some of the themes lyrically that you’re trying to get across on the album?
“It ranges from being spiked in Thailand to friendship troubles/experiences, to everyday feelings. I find that writing songs about my life and things I’ve been through helps a lot with processing things in a very special way.”
Can you talk about some of the musical influences on the album?
“Kouncilhouse and I have very different music styles on paper, which is why I think we work so well together. I have a few artists whose sound inspires me and I try to incorporate that into my songwriting, for example Sade, Ben Howard and London Grammar.”
What do you think sets your music apart?
“All of the music that I write means something to me, and is based on specific experiences. I like to think that anyone listening can take the songs and relate them to their own lives in their own way which I think is very original.”
What is the best advice you’ve been given about the music industry?
“The main advice that I try to take into consideration is to be driven, and know what I want when trying to get things. This doesn’t always come naturally to me, but I think it is very important as the music industry doesn’t wait for anyone. You have to go after what you want.”
If you could change one thing about the musical experience of young people, what would it be?
“Being a musician as a young person brings you limited opportunities, especially living in Cornwall as there is not a whole lot going on. People also seem really surprised when they learn how young you are because I think you automatically assume that people have to have a whole bunch of experience and a few years under your belt. I understand that but I don’t fully agree, as if you are hard-working enough and you have talent, you should be given the same opportunities as anyone else at the same standard.”
What’s the ultimate goal you want your music to achieve?
“I would really, really like to just be doing music for my whole life, without another job. To get to the point where I can support myself just doing the thing I love, as a result of my hard work.”
What’s your favourite song from the Cool Top 20 and why?
“I think that ‘When Our Lungs Are Empty’ by Joe Adhemar is a beautiful song, and his voice is gorgeous and intimate. It also makes me feel something which I find important when listening to a song.”
What song would you like to add as a bonus track?
“Charlie Scoble – ‘Behind the Sunshine’. Charlie is another lovely Cornish artist. We met on a Cornish radio show last year – he was really supportive.”
(All photos by Kieran Webber)
Written by: leancool20
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