In 2022, music is all streaming. The most successful songs are disguised as TikTok sounds. Even though ten minutes of fame are possible from a 15 second video, many music fans feel a disconnect from the artist and the music itself. Musician Eric Grava shared his musical inspiration with InBoston, this past month. His love of writing and producing transcends today’s hitmakers, bringing an old-school passion back to the industry.
Singer-songwriter Eric Grava credits the early 90s and his upbringing for his current work. Born in 1989, Grava was raised in a household of music lovers. Grava said, “My mom was a prolific music listener. My parents played CDs in my backyard all night and I would listen from my bedroom window.” He first jammed to iconic bands such as, The Counting Crows and the Police. Grava said his earliest musical inspiration was his mother, whom he was extremely close with. He said, “She instilled in me the confidence to do it. She was always encouraging me to sing at family gatherings.” Their connection continues to inspire him. Grava said, “Music will always be in our family.”
As a young child, Grava played guitar and piano. He lived in the world of old-school MTV or as he puts it, “before everything went digital.” Then by age 13 or 14, Grava began listening to 2000s punk bands and was inspired to start songwriting. He said, “There was a rebellion fire that awoke my soul. It was the first time I truly felt comfortable learning music.” A flicker start fueled by Blink-182 and other bands, turned into a fire of musical expression inside of Grava. He said, “I think it was becoming a teenager that made me feel like I had something to say. I connected to the way bands in the Warped Tour era wrote music. They often started with four chords. I knew I could write four chords and not overthink it.”
Eric Grava agrees that this is a disconnect between musicians and their listeners in today’s industry. He said, “With everything streaming there is less mystery and excitement. When I was growing up, the radio was never a background thing.” Even though MTV is all reality television now, Grava continues to write his own music. He said, “Words should never be wasted.” Grava draws inspiration from film, visuals, and “simply a feeling.” He is constantly inspired by the energy of a city that he has traveled or lived in. Grava said, “There’s no boundary of what you can get into a song. I am always curious about improving my writing and how a different environment can change my mindset.” Grava said his next step creatively is writing songs in other countries.
When asked about current projects Eric Grava said he has a new album titled, “Melodic Psychotic” being released on October 7th. The album spans several genres and themes, taking over two years to produce. Grava said a major theme of the album is feeling ok with existing and not fitting in. He said, “It’s not your fault if you feel like you can’t fit into this universe. Accepting that you don’t is ok. You should always follow your own calling.” The record explores lost love and how it feels to write one’s own redemption story. Grava said, “This album has pop elements, but it doesn’t follow a genre because music shouldn’t be bound to a construct.”
Even though his writing calls him to travel, Eric Grava is glad to be making music in Boston. He said, “My thing with Boston is this city has the biggest critics, so if you can make it here, you can make it anywhere. Everyone has something to say, so you may as well do what you love.” Writing music today can be scary. There is a lot of pressure to fit a mold or go viral. If you are worried about where to start, Grava recommends following your passion and the artists that set your soul on fire. He said, “There are no boundaries when you follow your intuition. Everyone has something to say and it is time to make a difference.”