Taylor Gray: Bullies, Addiction & Black AF
Taylor Gray is this week’s guest. He is an R&B artist based in Los Angeles and curator of the popular playlist "Flavor Waves" on Apple Music and Spotify, which has garnered the attention of artists such as Victoria Monét and Ro James.
- (1:22 ) Highlight - Gray talks about his childhood musical influences, growing up in a house playing neverending Prince, Chaka Kahn, Michael Jackson, Toni Braxton, Anita Baker and Luther Vandross. And of course the wonderful Miss Whitney Houston.
- (15:23 ) Highlight - But childhood wasn’t all perfect as Gray reveals the frequent bullying he experienced at school and how this affected his self-esteem even outside of the school gates.
- (7:14 ) Highlight - We chat about how mainstream music still wants “The Gays” to be either sex-crazed EDM dance-heads, or castrated shame-muffins. And how at the point of Black and Queer intersectionality there is often an outside fetishisation of race. Reference is made here to The IZM whose episode can be heard here.
- (16:42 ) Highlight - Anxiety and addiction are disproportionately represented within the LGBTQ community, and Gray discusses his relationship with both explaining how a recent journey into sobriety has already paid dividends in self-worth and musical creation.
- (23:42 ) Highlight - In his platform piece, Gray talks about the importance of feeling like we belong in a family. And that family can be biological or logical.
- (26.23) Highlight - Hand-picked recommendations from within the Queer community for other artists for us to enjoy. Many of them can be found on Gray’s playlist “Black & Queer AF” volumes 1 (Spotify) and 2 (Spotify). Of course alumni FURILLOSTAR gets a mention, and you can hear his episode here.
Here are some useful resources around bullying at school. Stonewall’s toolkit for secondary schools (high schools) and STOMP Out Bullying.
Support resources for anxiety can be found at the National Health Service and Mind charity websites. The National Health Service also provide useful advice for alcoholism as does Alcohol Change UK.
Author Armistead Maupin talks to The Guardian newspaper about the importance of logical families.
This is a weekly podcast of around 30-40 mins long publishing every Tuesday. I’m your host Dan Hall, and in each episode I chat with a gay / bi musician from anywhere in the world about their life and music.
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Enjoy the music of previous guests by listening to these playlists with tracks selected by the artists themselves.
You can reach the music of this week’s guest at Apple Music, Spotify, Bandcamp and YouTube. They can be found on social media at Twitter and Instagram.
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If you enjoyed this episode, why not take a listen to Rebel Will.