Addison Grace Bio:
Addison Grace makes personal music for a universal audience, intimate songs which somehow manage to speak what the listener feels but cannot quite put into words. The 20-year-old singer, songwriter, and social media star – who is non-binary and uses he/they pronouns – has fast made a name for themselves as a singular new artist, showcasing their one-of-a-kind perspective through mesmerizing bedroom pop and a bold, funny, utterly idiosyncratic online persona. Grace has worked tirelessly in recent months and is now set to unveil their most ambitious music thus far, shot through with focused enthusiasm and glimmering with a lyrical ingenuity that celebrates their own extraordinary journey of personal growth and self-evolution. Indeed, songs like “I Wanna Be A Boy” mark a landmark leap forward for Grace, affirming their own human and artistic identity while offering a gloriously anthemic voice to the voiceless.
“I would love for kids to be able to find comfort in myself,” Grace says. “That my music helps them understand that there really isn’t any such thing as normal. That it’s okay to experiment, it’s okay to be confused. It’s okay to find what makes you happiest. The only way to really do that is to be completely transparent with how I found myself and who I am.”
Born in California but raised in Salt Lake City, UT, Grace was blessed with an outsized personality and a passion for music. But as the only person with musical interests in their immediate family and circle of friends, that enthusiasm also instilled a feeling of isolation in Grace. Still, music offered answers to questions about their identity and experiences, with an early love of emo giving way to bedroom pop artists such as Cavetown, Chloe Moriando, Tessa Violet, Ricky Montgomery, and Dodie, a new generation of musical artists sharing details of their own lives to match the experiences of their audience, bonding them via the universality of personal self-exploration.
“I always kind of felt outcasted by my own self,” Grace says. “I honestly found myself and understood who I was because of other creators and other musicians. I first found out my sexuality and how I identified because of Dodie. She genuinely seemed just like me in my brain. Here was someone who was a girl and had a ukulele and was making their own songs and then figured out that they were bisexual. And so, when I was 12 or 13, she kind of explained myself to me.”
Grace learned ukulele by watching YouTube and soon began posting an array of content across social media, figuring out how to create and edit as they went along.
“It got the ball rolling, slowly, but the entire time – even now sometimes – I didn’t really know what I was doing,” Grace says. “I’m shocked that it’s worked out so far, because in every aspect I’m very much self-taught.”
Little by little, Grace’s content grew increasingly geared towards music, with pop covers giving way to original tracks recorded in a neighbor’s basement home studio. Grace earned immediate attention with their hyperactive first single, “Sugar Rush,” followed by a string of tracks – including “Honeysuckle,” “Party Killer,” “Manic Pixie Dream Girl,” and “Overthink” – that earned acclaimed as character-driven tales of unrequited love and teenage uncertainty, all etched with candor, wit, and originality.
While previously Grace had sent tracks to producers who would then embellish them in their own studios, the waning of the pandemic allowed them to collaborate face to face with NYC-based producer, mixer, and musician Jake Aron (Chloe Moriondo, Snail Mail, Empress Of) for “I Wanna Be A Boy.” An unprecedented anthem of self-exploration, the song had already touched a nerve with Grace’s growing fanbase, its acoustic demo earning over 500K views on YouTube while prompting a wide ranging conversation between artist and audience. “I Wanna Be A Boy” is perhaps Grace’s most declarative song, as straightforward as it is richly poetic, gaining momentum until a rapturous shout-it-out-loud coda full of joyful self-love.
“Sometimes you just have to be completely blunt and say what you want to say,” Grace says. “I wanted it to be one of those songs that you scream in your car because you just have so much emotion and need to get it out in the most direct way possible.
“I was just questioning a lot about myself. I used to identify as a girl, because that’s what I thought that I was. But I didn’t really feel like I fit in with a lot of the stereotypes of what being a girl meant. So when I first wrote that song, it was mainly just jealousy – I felt like boys had it easier in life and because I was a girl, that meant I had to almost take on life differently. I couldn’t be seen a certain way or be interacted with in a certain way. But eventually I ended up figuring out that the song was actually sort of a fight with my own gender and my own identity and who I really was as a person.”
Additional new tracks like “Kill The Switch” and “Make Me Sick” see Grace taking their already intimate songcraft even deeper, their third person narratives giving way to a more pared-down, explicitly personal lyricism influenced by such singer-songwriters as Phoebe Bridgers, Lizzy McAlpine, and Taylor Swift.
“I think my songwriting is taking a lot of different shapes right now,” Grace says. “As a kid I would write about my connections to others, rather than me as a person. But with this new stuff, I’ve really experimented with talking more about myself, my existence, growing up and finding myself as an adult.”
2022 promises to be Grace’s busiest year yet, with epic tour plans that include international festival appearances and a sold out North American run alongside Cavetown and Tessa Violet.
“It’s exhausting,” Grace says. “You get no sleep in a hotel, you have no private space, you drive in a van for six hours, get to the venue, slap on some clothes, some hair products, and you go onstage where you have to perform with energy, even though in your head, you’re so tired. And that’s not to say I don’t love it, because when I’m not performing live shows, I’m immediately wanting to go back and do it all again.”
For Addison Grace, making music has proven a kind of superpower, allowing them to better understand themselves while also helping others do the same. But with that gift comes responsibility – pressure to create, to realize one’s purpose and meet the expectations put upon them by their chosen path. Addison Grace is discovering more about who they are each day and wouldn’t have it any other way.
“Music is the best and the worst thing I could have ever done,” Grace says. “If I didn’t have music, if I wasn’t doing this, I would be absolutely miserable. I honestly would not be happy and I would not be fulfilled. But doing music, it’s a lot. You have so much on your plate, you’re constantly busy, you have to take on a different life that most people don’t understand. It’s like two sides of a coin and you have to decide which one’s better for you. For me, I would rather exhaust myself living the dream than have to deal without it.”