We get to know Grace Farriss, an impressive young woman with a famous pedigree and a bright future, if her debut single is anything to go by.
‘All The People’ is a curious beast; a heady mix of genres, ranging from pop to rock, funk to disco; all elements rolled into a three minute slice of sunshine.
But there’s a lot more to know about Grace than just her famous surname, so join us won’t you in getting to know her a little more in our latest feature!
01. Name : Grace Elizabeth Farriss.
02. Where are you based? Australia.
03. How did you get your start in music? I had written hundreds and thousands of songs and had all of this poetry and needed it to go somewhere. I guess I had a craving to play it to others. Although not to perform as much as write. I am a writer first and foremost. I am the happiest when writing music.
I flew to LA and recorded my debut album ‘Grace’ with some of the world’s best musicians. I felt like I was in a dreamland.
I am self taught in music, lyrics, song-writing, poetry, timing and arrangements. It all came to me at once at a very young age. Sometimes I had no idea as to where these messages came from and sometimes I know exactly where they come from.
04. Give us five words to best describe you as an artist. Introspective, loving, experimental, artistic, innovative.
05. Tell us a little bit about your sound and how it developed. My sound is really quite varied. I do not have one sound. I would say I explore every sound. Although a folkier more intimate sound is where I feel the most calm when writing and the most connected on an internal level.
I feel I explore classical, jazz, rock, pop, disco, rhythm and blues music within my own style which evolves all of the time. My sound developed using different instruments and experimenting with different in built sounds on keyboards as well as the electric guitar and acoustic guitars. Drums and bass is a huge one I explored with my album.
‘All The People’ and a couple of other tracks are heavily influenced by the drums and bass feels and grooves. Although all of many sounds usually stem from a sound I hear in my head that just comes to me. To explain it is intense as it is very deep in its evolution.
But usually the song comes to me on piano or guitar or in my mind, melody or something and then I can hear where it wants to go from what I hear in my head and then experiment. It can be a mixture of many of these practices.
06. What’s your earliest musical memory? Listening to lullabies and classical music like ‘The Nutcracker’ by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky and Mozart as a child when I would practice ballet. On road trips and listening to Creedence Clearwater Revival, Frank Sinatra, Nancy Sinatra and Lee Hazlewood, the early Beatles albums, The Beach Boys.
07. Who have been your musical influences? Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky, Brian Wilson, Carole King, Pink Floyd, The Beach Boys, Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, Astrud Gilberto, Neil Young, Johann Sebastian Bach, Joni Mitchell, Ludwig van Beethoven, Elvis Presley, The Beatles, John Newton, Frank Sinatra, Bob Dylan, Creedence Clearwater Revival, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.
08. What are your favourite songs of all time? ‘The Four Seasons’ by Vivaldi, ‘Amazing Grace’ by John Newton, ‘God Only Knows’ by Brian Wilson, ‘Watermark’ by Enya, ‘That’s Life’ by Dean Kay, Kelly Gordan and Frank Sinatra, ‘Hejira’ by Joni Mitchell, ‘Both Sides Now’ by Joni Mitchell, ‘Storms In Africa’ by Enya, ‘Imagine’ by John Lennon, ‘Echoes’ by Pink Floyd, ‘Djarimirri (Child of the Rainbow)’ by Gurrumul, ‘A Love For You’ by Paul McCartney, ‘Long As I Can See The Light’ by John Fogerty and ‘The Times They Are A Changin’ by Bob Dylan.
09. Where’s your favourite place to listen to music? Alone, in nature or with the ones I love the most.
10. Who are your go-to artists when you’re feeling :
Happy? When I am happy I like to listen to lighter music like The Beach Boys, Creedence Clearwater Revival, Sergio Mendes, Joni Mitchell, Enya, Ladysmith Black Mambazo, Motown, Neil Young, Astrud Gilberto.
Sad? Exhausted? When I am sad or exhausted I enjoy listening to classical music like Mozart, Vivaldi and Bach, Enya, Brian Wilson, Laraaji, Hawaiian Aboriginal or American Indian Indigenous music.
Introspective? When I am introspective I like to listen to everything from Indigenous music, Leonard Cohen, Joni Mitchell, classical music.
11. What was the first album you ever bought? ‘The Jungle Book’ soundtrack.
12. Give us a little fun fact about yourself that people might not know. I love gardening.
13. What would your chosen career be if music wasn’t an option? Painter.
14. What’s the best advice you’ve been given in your career? “No matter what you do stay true” and “Dreams don’t work unless you do”.
15. What’s been the highlight of your musical journey so far? Writing the music, arranging and recording the music for my up and coming album ‘Grace’.
16. What’s been the strangest experience you’ve had in the business? People questioning if you write your own music or not. My understanding is that this is the definition of being a song-writer and writer.
17. If you could trade places with any artist in the world right now, who would it be? Brian Wilson.
18. Tell us about your latest release. In 2017 I wrote ‘All The People’. It is one of those songs that came to me quickly as well as the arrangement and the sound which became obvious soon afterward. A year of experimentation and understanding what the song wanted from conception to the sound I created in the build-up to recording the song was essential.
Writing this song I often felt my consciousness rising on topics of the human consciousness and our place on earth in our time. It is also a very fun song to play and sing.
The first single from my titled debut album ‘Grace’ titled ‘All The People’ is a combination of pop, rock, funk and disco. Which as I describe as “An explosion of my heart and I feel in many ways at this time, the worlds heart.”
I have always had such a deep fascination with how all of the cultures united come to be and how we all interact with one another and interconnect through our wonderful cultural differences. I do ﬁnd it so incredibly fascinating.
What I feel other cultures teach you is that we are all one and the same. Which I feel music and the arts certainly accomplish to bring this awareness to us all so intimately and so beautifully, internally and in celebration with one another. This is what inspired the song ‘All The People’.
I worked on it consistently for a year until I was happy with it before going into the studio. The song itself came to me very quickly as well as the arrangement and the direction I felt the song wanted to go in.
19. What do your future plans involve? I am currently writing a book that will comprise of all of my lyrics, poetry, writings, sayings and stories I have written up until this point in my life. This book will be much of my heart and mind in a book. But also providing much mystery as many of my lyrics and poetry tends to be quite cryptic and offers a subjective point of view for the reader.
The book will be about 2000 pages long and there will be three chapters being poems, sayings and stories which is in fact the title of the book. ‘Poems, Sayings and Stories’ will be published upon the release of my debut album ‘Grace’. The ‘All The People’ lyrics will also be found in the book.
I am currently founding a not-for-profit environmental organisation called The Grace Earth Organisation, which will allow for and open the conversation to new ways of living within our community whilst thinking appropriately, logically and in a future forward way about our impact on our environment and how we can best live in harmony with our home whilst still moving forward, innovating and adjusting as mankind. Like we have always done.
It will be an information-based organisation and will direct people to information that can help them move forward in life and in an environmentally friendly way without having to let go of their everyday creature comforts.
I was raised and grew up my whole life surrounded by nature in all its natural forms. By the ocean and in the countryside. Enjoying locally grown food, and sharing this with the community is important to me. The Grace Earth Organisation will launch towards November/December of 2020.
20. Where can our audience catch you live? My singles and album are the best way to listen to my music. Although I will be playing through this time on film as well as events that are for The Grace Earth Organisation and The Jane Goodall Institute.