Singer-songwriter CLAY may have found her musical footing in Los Angeles by way of San Francisco, but she’s got a sound that resonates with an international audience. Her recently released single “Follow Me Down” has garnered her a ridiculous amount of play on Spotify, and included in the top areas that play it are the coasts, São Paulo, and Rio. While she works on mastering her sound – what is now a nice blend of vintage soul and R&B – we got to chat with her a bout about what’s going on in her life, and what brought her into the music fold. Check it out below.
If you could introduce yourself to an audience in any way, no constraints, how would you do it?
I’m not sure if I have any constraints currently… My introduction varies each time, depending on the day. It’s not very fancy or thought out, usually the music does most of the talking.
What’s your official origin story?
I was born and raised in San Francisco, I started singing before I could say full sentences and I haven’t stopped since.
What was the earliest record you can remember leaving an impression on you?
My dad used to sing “Sweet Thing” by Rufus and Chaka Khan to me during every car ride, it just never ceases to make me throw my head back, eyes closed in pure bliss.
How do you stay inspired to continually create music?
Sometimes it’s hard to create, my creative pores get blocked or I feel uninspired. When that happens I try to change up my routine, say yes to things I normally wouldn’t do, seek out people who think or create differently than I do. While I’m not constantly inspired to write music every minute, I am inspired or moved by SOMETHING most of the time, so it’s about metabolizing whatever inspiration is in front of me, breaking it down and eventually letting it influence my musical creativity.
How supportive are your friends and family in your pursuit of music?
I have the most supportive family and friends in the universe ! I couldn’t have dreamt up a better support system.
When a track like “Wild Thing/3’s A Crowd” takes off on Spotify, how does that influence your future work, if at all?
I don’t think it influences or changes the work at all. It’s just motivating to know that people resonate with the song, as unique and personal as it is. It’s nice that it’s being well received and makes me more comfortable to continue to explore and reach outside of the box.
Where do you feel most comfortable as an artist? On the road, on the stage, in the studio, at home?
I am most comfortable in the first stages of creating when I am in the shower or in my car, but sharing music live is my true love. Nothing compares to the feeling I have on the stage connecting with other people through music.
What has been the most challenging moment, or obstacle you’ve faced in your journey as an artist so far?
Hmmm, I’m not sure if there is one particular moment or obstacle. I think I’m currently in it ! This is the time where I am experimenting, working hard to get my music and message heard and well received, all the while being a self-funded independent artist.
What’s your dream collaboration?
It’s always been my ultimate dream to sing with Stevie Wonder…
Keep up with CLAY here.