When a young lady has her favorite whiskey(s) and go-to breweries, our money is on her in a drinking contest. Katy Graves is something special.
Deep in the heart of Texas is the birthplace of Katy Graves sound. As a native Texan, Katy grew up surrounded by gospel, soul, and country music influences. Singing since before she could remember, Katy found her passion for music at a very young age. Her musical background includes gospel, contemporary, bluegrass, and traditional country genres.
As a young musician, Katy is off to a stellar career in country music. Her title of 2013 CCMA (Colorado Country Music Awards) Female Vocalist of the Year has her showcasing with an amazing band. With the passion and drive to take her music to a new level, Katy began playing the guitar and surrounded herself with professional musicians with over 20 years of experience.
Katy is based out of the mountains of Colorado where she surrounds herself with the country and beauty of nature to make for a great recipe in her songwriting.
With a bio like that, no need to add dandelions to roses. Enjoy the conversation.
NRR: Thanks for taking some time to talk to National Country Review. Help me out, what’s been going on with you in the last year or so?
Katy Graves: Wow, well, thereâ€™s so much thatâ€™s always happening. 2015 has been such a great journey. Got to experience the Sundance Film Festival in Utah. I was working on my first full album but had to stop due to creative differences. Thatâ€™s been a huge lesson as an artist this year especially. In spite of my album project on hold, I was lead to an AMAZING producer, John Macy of Macy Studios. He cut my single this year called â€œTexas Jewel.” After it dropped, I hit the road running with it. I started my radio tour in Nashville with BB KINGS LIVE with The Chris Top program and the WOBA Awards then hit Texas.
My trip was abruptly interrupted by the hurricane in June making my route west instead of the Hill Country. It was the best detour I’ve ever made! Hit Dallas with Pepper Stewarts Texas Ranch N Rodeo Weekly Show, Alpine, TX with Dylan Hunter, Lubbock and Amarillo, TX with Craig Vaughn and more along the way! People really responded to my music well. In July I was off to France for some fun and songwriting for a few weeks. Then back at it with Front Range Radio in Colorado Springs, CO. During all that my friend talked me into the NASH NEXT Competition. Itâ€™s an only Country Music Contest to go on tour in 2016. There are five challenges, Iâ€™m on the first even though I made it to the top 100, I still need fans voting for me during the challenge process. Itâ€™s a lot of fun, and there are great artist participating.
NRR: Is there an album that we should know about in the works?
Katy Graves: There has been a lot of new music in the works, it will be in 2016 before Iâ€™ll be able to get it finishedâ€¦ fingers crossed!
NRR: How’s the voting going for the Nash deal? I saw your Tweet about it.
Katy Graves: I hope good! I did make the TOP 100, but now I need votes and fans to like, share and listen to my music all the time in order to stay in the competition. Vote for me! (Laughing), #NASHNEXT #NASHNEXTKATYGRAVES.
NRR: Is there someone in your family in or was in the military that causes your support to be so open?
Katy Graves: My father was in the Navy and many of close family and friends are as well. Itâ€™s close to my heart.
NRR: How does a typical Katy Graves song come about? Is it done in one shot or can it take a while to come together?
Katy Graves: Songsâ€¦ Hmmmâ€¦ well, honestly my songs just come to me. They come out of nowhere, sometimes while Iâ€™m driving, in the shower, 12-2am wake up and start writing. Sometimes they are in pieces and then sometimes they hit all at once. I can hear the music the words. Colorado has been great for my writing.
NRR: Is it as hard in country music to be an independent artist as any other genre or with social media does it make it easier to not have a Nashville label?
Katy Graves: Iâ€™m not sure. As an independent I do everything myself. Which has its upside to it, but then downsides as well. Iâ€™m not educated enough on the Nashville Labels to know what itâ€™s like with one. I just do me and hope for the best.
NRR: What has been one or two of the more difficult lessons you’ve had to learn since you started out to make your mark in music?
Katy Graves: To always be true to myself and the music I write. To not let people push me around about myself as an artist. And what the opinion of others have of me, [should not] affect how I do my business.
NRR: Is there a moment, that thinking back on it now, in your career that you can’t help but still feel a tad bit embarrassed about, makes you laugh about despite yourself, or just still makes you shake your head in disbelief? A spinal tap moment if you will, that you’d be willing to share with me?
Katy Graves: Goodness I can think of a couple! Probably all the karaoke contests I entered just to get over my stage fright.
NRR: Texas is a great place for country music. What caused the allure for Colorado and did any little awards maybe help keep you there?
Katy Graves: I was born and raised in Texas, but as a teenager I worked on a ranch in Peyton, CO and just fell in love! I’ve been between both states. Colorado has made for a great chemistry in my writing and has kept me in a passionate state.
NRR: Within your influences, who would you say left the biggest mark on your sound musically and why?
Katy Graves: I grew up with a lot of gospel and country. My sound, I feel has been of more traditional country with blues in it. Very soulful in a lot of music I have yet to release to the public. Catching me live is the best way to hear my sound.
NRR: Is there an adult beverage of choice that might make its way on the tour bus or even on stage that helps to keep the vocal chords well oiled or the fingers especially limber, and if so what is the drink of choice?
80 Proof by Katy Graves
Katy Graves: OHHH YES! I actually have a few favorites! Iâ€™m a big whiskey and scotch fan! My nickname is Whiskey Kate. Which I ended up getting after writing my song 80 proof. My favorites are Stranahans, 291, Oban, and Glenlivet. I slice a lemon and have it chilled or on the rocks with lemon. Beerâ€¦ Shiner and Big Bend Brewing. However, there are a lot of yummy breweries in Colorado I love as well such as Beirwerks, Ute Pass Brewing Co, Red Leg, Paradox and moreâ€¦ so thatâ€™s a tough pick.
Thank you so much for having me. I really appreciate you taking the time with me and look forward to working with you in the future! XOXO Katy
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