London based artist Natalie Gray has dropped her new single “Fire”. A song the artist explains was written during lockdown and stemmed from a collaboration she was working on with Moonwalker. A song she admits to being outside her comfort zone as it follows a more standard pop vibe, yet still incorporating her love for the 80s synths.
Music for Gray is therapy, she explains. Going on to point out how no matter what mood she is in; music always seems to have the answer. A feeling she is keen to invoke in her listeners. “For someone to find peace on a bad day, or know they’re not alone. Or grab their hairbrush and dance around like Molly Ringwald with the biggest smile”. Gray highlights how music has been apart of her life since she was a child. Regularly performing Madonna and the Spice Girls albums to anyone that would listen.
“I love all genres of music, my discover weekly on Spotify is always a crazy selection! From hard core rock to bubblegum pop, I just love music and love creating music in all different boxes”.
The artist explains that her sound is very much influenced by the sounds of her childhood. From Madonna, Prince, through to Whitney Houston. Gray looks to create a sense of nostalgia through her music, incorporating an element of contemporary flare. Going onto joke that if The 1975 had a baby with Madonna whilst listening to Katy Perry then that would be her!
EMBRACING HER OWN SOUND
“Live In Love” was the first time Gray embraced her own sound and stopped trying to fit into a box. She explains that the meaning of the song is based on feeling ‘who cares what people think just be who you are and be proud of that.’ A quote which she looks to incorporate in her life on a daily basis.
Gray explains how her family have always been her constant in life, supporting the artist even at times when she did not believe in herself. “They’ve kept me focused and reminder me that as long as I’m happy that’s the main goal”. For the artist, we get so hung up on numbers and social media that sometimes it’s easy to forget why we started. For Gray, she wanted to make her family proud and do what she enjoys everyday.
Growing up Gray explains how her obsession with Madonna and Whitney Houston stemmed from these two incredible woman pushing the boundaries which she is an incredible champion of! In addition to being a huge Pink fan, an artist she believes has showcase the meaning of being true to yourself and not giving up even though she’s been tested repeatedly.
OVERCOMING PTSD AND EXTREME ANXIETY
Gray opens up about being bullied throughout her entire childhood! With recent episodes due to online trolls. The artist came across a lightswitch moment where in her words she took the stance ‘it doesn’t really matter, and you can’t please everyone and you certainly can’t be everyone’s favourite flavour of cake’. In Gray’s view, bullying comes from a place of insecurity in that person themselves, so as hard as it is to not let it affect you, you have to rise above and not let it get to you as life is so short.
The artist explains how she was diagnosed with PTSD and extreme anxiety a few years ago after being held at gun point in london. This led to a number of panic attacks and a lot of days questioning her worth and place on this Earth. she openly admits to still suffering now with anxiety and panic attacks, which have been greatly supported through therapy and an incredible support system of her family and partner. A point which the artist is very open about especially on her socials, as Gray believes being honest about your feelings a means to heal.
Additionally to helping the artist pull through these episodes, she points to her team who have been instrumental in helping her bring her vision to life. “It’s so important to work with people who are on the same page as you and enjoy the music you create, who are also supportive of you and your career”.
KEEP GOING & NEVER TAKE NO FOR AN ANSWER
To achieve self worth, Gray believes it is vitally important to keep going and never take no for an answer. Going onto highlight how you are going to hear so many no’s and so many “not right for us” etc but music is all opinion based! To persevere and keep believing in yourself. She explains that her greatest challenge has been suffering from imposter syndrome, and very often self-doubt.
“Whenever I have new music coming out I will spend a couple days before just riddled with anxiety that no one will listen, or if they do they’ll hate it etc etc and there’s been so many times I’ve nearly listened to the demons in my head but having a strong support system of family, friends and my amazing partner has kept me going”.
Currently working on her tour for next year, off the back of a successful tour this June. In addition to promoting her TAKE BACK THE BEAT music tour which raised money for Women’s Aid to help survivors of domestic abuse.#watchthisspace