London vocalist Chanelle Gray would like to incorporate another musical element called “street soul” into the musical mix. The street’s influenced Gray’s knowledge of musical composition which prompted her to categorize her music as “street soul.” And based on her following on social media, she is truly making a lasting impression. Gray’s previous video”Falling” received more than 20,000 views on YouTube.
Music is not foreign to Gray! She established her relationship with music when she learned more about her diverse musical background: her mother is a singer and renowned DJ ‘Lady Gem of Vibes FM radio in London. She also appreciates another music teacher, Owen Gray, her grandfather for introducing her to reggae rhythms and sounds. In addition to her musical background, she was also influenced by Stevie Wonder, Aretha Franklin, Sade, and Bob Marley.
Gray continues to establish her musical identity when she released the video to her song “Glass N Me.” Her ultimate goal is to attract listeners in the United States and the United Kingdom.
Singersroom.com chatted with the humble singer about her journey, musical influences, and her compelling single “Glass N Me.”
Check it out!
“Glass N Me” Single: When I wrote the song, I wasn’t in the right place in my life. But even though I was down and sad, I still wanted to be open in my music. I was writing from the current stage in my life. I had rotator cuff surgery, and after I was done with the surgery, I didn’t feel like an artist. It was just a sad point. I couldn’t perform or write for months. I was down, and my glass became my numbing tool. It wasn’t a good state, but that was the state I was in at the time. But as time went on, my life was going through this metamorphic stage, and I didn’t want to depend on my glass. It made me figure out how I can fix and work on myself. It became a progressive because I viewed the glass differently. It was no longer a way for me to cope and deal with life.
Music Is: Music is a light that shouldn’t be dimmed. It is a tool that brings people together. All the greats lasted in music because they understood how music helps people. I like to call it the “ultimate healer” because it enriches your soul. It’s a creative form of work.
Family Musical Pedigree: For me, music was always accessible in my home. I grew up listening to soul, R&B, and reggae. My mom was a singer and DJ; my grandfather was a reggae singer. On the weekends, we would play music, and everyone would dance and have a good time at celebrations. As I started getting older, I started listening to other artists and rhythms. I really enjoy music; it was just an amazing time. I was exposed to music at a young age, and I celebrated that opportunity.
Finding Her Voice: I don’t remember what I was singing when I was just trying to entertain my mom. I knew I didn’t want to be a reggae singer. But I knew I wanted to have a career in music once I discovered my voice. Singing was born once I found my voice.
Street Soul Music: As I said before, I grew up listening to all kinds of music. In London, they had this show called, Top of The Pops. It was a station in London, and they played all kinds of music, R&B, soul, pop, rock, and hip-hop for 30 minutes. It was good because we became familiar with other kinds of music. As a teenager, they had house and garage music events where music was played in the street. You would hear all kinds of sounds and singers in the street, and for me, it became another musical element I listened to. It made me realize that music can be displayed anywhere and everywhere.
London’s Musical Culture: It’s similar to the United States because many U.S. artists influenced our style and musical taste. But I would have to say the soul music was a little different. In London, at that time, we had Soul II Soul and Lisa Stansfield, so the tone of music changed. We also had Reggae and Caribbean influences like Caron Wheeler. Some of my favorite artists from the U.S. are Aretha Franklin, Lauryn Hill, and Mary J. Blige.
What Else Can We Expect from Chanelle Gray: I will be touring, finishing up my EP, Head Gone. With this EP, I am writing a story about my musical journey and where I am at now in my life. You hear it when I perform on stage. Also, I’m just going to be myself and stay true to myself. There’s nothing wrong evolving, but you shouldn’t be fake and untrue. People will recognize your intentions and the “real” you after awhile. I really believe you can make it in this world if you stay true to yourself. If you stay true, your life will go in the direction it’s supposed to go. If you are at the height of your career, remember where you came from and appreciate the folks that helped you, past or present. I know I can do anything I set my mind to, but I know I have to be honest with myself always. The world is cruel and crazy, so you can’t lose sight of yourself.