I'm really looking forward to hearing the entire album, having really enjoyed the singles (and respective videos). Last year, I posted some answers to questions that I asked Grand via email on this blog. Read more from the press release...
In 2013, Steve Grand, a singer-songwriter from Chicago, spent $7,000 of his own money to produce a music video for a song he had written called "All-American Boy." On July 2, he posted the video to YouTube and it went viral instantly, accumulating more than 1.5 million views in the first two weeks. The video now boasts more than 3.7 million views.
Steve Grand will release his aptly titled debut album All American Boy on March 24. Produced by Aaron Johnson, the album is a culmination of years of support that Steve has received from his fans. Fueled by donations from nearly 5,000 fans, Grand raised over $325,000 in what became third-most funded music project in Kickstarter history.
Following the release of the "All-American Boy" video, Grand landed on Good Morning America, CNN, Larry King and other national media - hailed as a "viral sensation" and one of America's "first openly gay country stars,” though Grand himself has never stood by that title.
"I never embraced that label, but if my fans heard 'All-American Boy' as country, who am I to tell them ’no’? Music is subjective. That is part of the whole point. The lines of life are blurring … we are seeing that in music as well as in sexuality and gender identity. For me, it’s all about the song, and a good song can take the shape of many different genres depending on who is singing it or how it is produced,” explains Grand.
Yesterday, OUT Magazine shared the news of the new release with a live performance video of Grand performing his hit song "All-American Boy."
Influenced by such disparate artists as The Beatles, Billy Joel, Fall Out Boy, Lady Gaga, and Bruce Springsteen, Grand's debut features 13 songs that showcase Grand's diverse taste and style. The album includes the country-tinged tunes "All American Boy" and "Stay," the grungy party anthem "Whiskey Crime," and the dance-pop track "We Are The Night."
"When I think about the songs I was putting on this album, I thought about the album following an arc or storyline - Each song needed to function as a plot point on that arc. A lot of things in life follow that trajectory, where there's a beginning, middle and end. Relationships do that, growing up does that, life does that. Each song is a plot point of a larger story, but each song is also a story all by itself. When standing alone, each song explores some kind of relationship, whether it be a relationship with a romantic partner, a relationship with a friend, a relationship with the past, a relationship with something destructive, a relationship with a community,” explains Grand. "But most of my songs have a storyteller quality to them, they're about specific moments in time."
An active member of the LGBT community, Grand's choices about his lyrics and imagery in his music videos have been seen by many as groundbreaking, but he views it differently. "I'm not doing what I'm doing to make any kind of political statement, I don't like thinking about love or an expression of love or the human condition as political,” explains Grand.
"I'm a songwriter, so I draw from my own personal experiences and I write about them the way any other songwriter would. There's nothing different about my music just because I'm gay. I sing about things that I go through, but they are things that we all go through, regardless of our sexual orientation.”
"I'm not trying to make any sweeping statement about any community. I’m just doing my best to be the best ‘me’ I can be. I think we can all benefit from more people letting their true-selves shine through, whatever that may look like.”
Watch a live performance of "All-American Boy" here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UVvkfTYkYQM
1) Say You Love Me
2) Red, White and Blue
3) We Are The Night
4) All-American Boy
5) Soaking Wet
6) Loving Again
7) Whiskey Crime
9) Next To Me
11) Better Off
13) Back to California