It’s always been Lucy Gray’s dream to be a successful singer songwriter, and she’s now well on the way to realising that ambition after releasing her first single.
Having learnt guitar and piano, she started writing songs from a young age and now at the age of fifteen has just released her first single, Your Name, with a seven track EP waiting in the wings.
“It’s going pretty well,” Lucy says.” It was quite a big process to release it – I’d never done anything like it before – but it’s had a pretty good response and lots of support.”
The response has been more than ‘pretty good’ – Lucy has received NZ On Air development funding on the strength of it.
“The goal is to make this my career,” she explains. “One of the things about getting funding is that once you’ve managed to get it, it hopefully becomes easier in the future so you can keep making music.”
Lucy’s determination was one of the things that impressed Marc Royal, who runs the Toi Ōtautahi music incubator programme.
“When we had our first meeting, Lucy was so motivated and had a good vision of what she wanted to do with her music,” says Marc. “So we wanted to provide a platform for her to achieve her goals that would help her take the next step in her career.”
That platform involved pairing Lucy with Victoria and Andy Knopp of Knopp Creative – two producers who Marc felt would be able to help Lucy get the result she wanted.
“I knew they would be great for her,” explains Marc. “I felt like they had a good understanding of the kind of music Lucy wanted to produce. Focusing on that one single with the incubator programme meant they were able to take the song in its raw form and turn it into a commercial song – so it was great to see that end to end result.”
Lucy credits the music incubator programme with helping her to make inroads into her career.
“The incubator programme had a substantial impact on me. I’d been doing music for awhile and I’d been trying to get my foot in the door but it’s challenging to know where to start. Working so closely with the producers helped me polish the songs as well as apply for the development funding. That wouldn’t have happened if I’d been going it alone.”
“She was very focused,” says Marc. “I haven’t worked with that many people her age but I was so impressed with her professionalism and her drive and clarity for what she wanted to achieve.”
Lucy’s hoping to release her EP early next year.
“I’m going to take it as far as I can go.”
You can listen to Lucy’s song – ‘Your Name’ here.