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Grace Gracie: Defying Expectations In An Ever Changing Scene [Interview]

A few weeks back we had the privilege of debuting the first release from a true landmark up and coming producer. Grace Gracie's first single, ‘Devil', packed an emotional and impressive punch. From the beginning, Grace Gracie hasn't been shy about who she is and what she stands for in the industry. While many females like Rezz and Alison Wonderland have had massive success over the last few years, dance music, unfortunately, remains a boy's club in many ways. Grace is making sure to do her part to break down the barriers and remind everyone that it's your music that matters, not your gender.

We got a chance to catch up with the artist after the hectic excitement of her initial release died down. While we only got a chance to ask a few questions, Grace Gracie's answers only add more depth and weight to her enigmatic presence as one of the most exciting producers to emerge in 2018.

Getting To Know Grace Gracie

While Grace Gracie's discography might not be lengthy, her experience in the industry runs deep. For years she has been a resident of the Las Vegas-based collective Dance Mansion. She has played some of the hottest clubs on the strip and opened for the likes of Steve Aoki. I was curious about her views on how it is being a female in a male-dominated industry.

“I feel by emphasizing female in this context we insinuate that there are different standards for women in dance music. It shouldn’t matter, only the music should matter. Like we don’t say, female painter, or female poet. It’s especially ironic because dance music meant to bring people together even more so than any other genre. So we should be at the forefront of leveling the playing field and erasing the bias.”

I wanted to a write a song that connected with people emotionally…

Grace Gracie is an active individual. When she is not spinning in some of the world's finest superclubs, she is practicing her martial arts skills or championing anti-poaching causing to protect endangered species around the world. In her latest single, ‘Devil', emotionally driven lyrics narrate a story which each listener may interpret differently. Curating this kind of style in a single is difficult, but Grace has an innate talent when it comes to producing relatable music.

“When it comes to producing dance music, you have to find a balance between depth and fun. People go to clubs and festivals to have a good time, not to be reminded of their problems. I wanted to a write a song that connected with people emotionally, something they can relate to but also keep an upbeat vibe. I spent weeks in the studio fine tuning every little sound to try and bring that energy into ‘Devil'.”

Getting into DJing and production during the explosion of Dutch House of the 2000's, Grace has always pulled influences from a wide breadth of artists. While during her sets the crowd can expect an array of genres, ‘Devil' is a track steeped in a modernized, sultry mood. She seamlessly incorporated elements of R&B, future bass and trap into the release. So the question that has to be asked is: how exactly did she develop her now-signature sound?

“Well, I grew up on Dutch House so that Melodic Euro Big Room sound is something that’s always been a foundation and reference, I love the hard synths and the big drops. Most of the time that’s where I start my songs and then I make alternate mixes that I tame down a bit for radio. There are some elements in future bass and even trap that I love so you can hear a little bit of that here and there. When it comes to vocals I lean toward the big soulful hooks of R&B and pop.

As for what I listen to … Swedish House Mafia is probably my all time favorite … but my current favorite tracks are Afrojack and David Guetta’s “Another Life” – and Martin Garrix & David Guetta’s “Like I do”. I'm also absolutely in love with Mark Kinchen / MK's new record “17”… it's sooo good.”

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When Grace Gracie first got started dance music looked very different than it does today. The artists of the time were set in their ways. It was unthinkable for a big name to work outside their comfort zone. Now any given week, legends of dance music could produce anything from a main stage banger to a full-on rap track. Grace has observed this change first hand and has valuable insight on why the developing culture of dance music continues to lean towards defying expectations.

“I think we all welcome the blurred lines because most artists don't want to be locked into rigid sub-genres. I'm excited about the possibilities of tapping into different genres, and the very purpose to become an artist is to have the freedom to express whatever we want.. I think in music there are no rules, and I think we can innovate and find our signature sounds easier when we are not bound to one genre.”

There is no doubt that Grace's experience in the industry has helped her gain a valuable knowledge of exactly what listeners are looking for when they press play. Her single, ‘Devil' has already accrued over 100,000 streams on both Soundcloud and Spotify. If you were not familiar with Grace Gracie before, it is good that you are acquainted with her now, because if I had to guess – you are going to be hearing her name a lot more as 2018 continues.

Check out ‘Devil' below and follow Grace Gracie on Facebook and  Twitter to stay up to date on her journey as an artist.

 

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