One of my all-time favorite gay singers is Steve Grand, whose hits like Stay, All American Boy, and Pink Champagne have made the 30-year-old singer a “must hear” for gay music lovers. I had the opportunity to ask Steve some questions about his music, his career, and what he’s up to during the pandemic.
Thanks for answering my questions, Steve. What made you pursue a career in music?
I started playing the piano when I was five after I saw Schroeder play that little grand piano on the Charlie Brown cartoon. I thought it was the coolest thing! However, music didn’t really become my life until I was about 11 or 12. Adolescence was a difficult time for me, and music became my outlet to try and express myself and heal.
How has being a gay man impacted your music?
Being gay has certainly impacted the way I see the world and interact with others, so of course, it flavors my music. When I was younger, the angst and frustration I felt being attracted to straight guys who I knew could never reciprocate the feelings I had was a driving force for me, at least I was able to put those feelings into a song.
Who influenced you musically?
I’ve had many music “phases” throughout my life. I listened to a lot of classic rock with my dad that inspired me when I was young. Then as a teenager, I was really into the pop/punk/emo scene; artists like Blink 182, My Chemical Romance, and Taking Back Sunday. Over the last years, my inspiration is artists like Lana Del Rey and Lady Gaga.
You did a really beautiful duet with Eli Lieb a few years back; is there someone you haven’t worked with you’d like to?
Thanks so much! I really loved collaborating with him. Such a talented, sweet guy. Generally, I don’t seek out a lot of collaborations. I was the kid at school who ended up trying to do as much of the group project as possible! I always say I would love to do something with Todrick Hall one day and I’ve told him.
Your song, Pink Champaign, feels very personal. What’s the story behind it?
There is a story behind all my music. That one is about my struggle with alcohol abuse a few years back, and navigating that gray line between just having a good time drinking with your friends, and when consumption becomes something darker and unhealthy.
How are you spending your time during the pandemic?
The beginning of quarantine was more difficult than I realized, but I’m back into the swing of things. I did a lot of work on my underwear/swimwear line I launched last December called Grand Axis. The swimwear was supposed to come out in April, but the factory in New York City shut down. We were able to go live in September. In the last few weeks, the songwriting bug has seemed to hit me again. I feel like I haven’t been truly inspired to write in a year no matter how much I try, and now it feels like the flood gates are opening again.
When can we expect another album?
Probably not before next summer. I may do a shorter one. But I want it to be something happy and summery — there is enough darkness in this world right now.
Thanks for taking the time, Steve.
You can check out Steve’s music on his YouTube channel (YouTube.com/SteveGrandMusic), buy his music at shop.SteveGrand.com, and check out his underwear line at shopGrandAxis.com — he and his mom do all the fulfillment!