FEATURE: Kay Greyson – A Look Back at 2021 | NARC. | Reliably Informed | Music and Creative Arts News for Newcastle and the North East

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So, how was your 2021?

2021 was a game of two halves for me (as the footballers say), some of it was amazing and some of it was awful. Overall, I’m happy and healthy as of writing this so I’m thankful and can’t complain.

What was your best moment?

The highlight of my year would be receiving my DYCP funding from the Arts Council. It has allowed me to keep doing what I love all the way through the craziness and I will never forget the moment I found out that I was successful in my application. A massive opportunity I’m forever grateful for.

And your worst moment?

In November my cat, Simba, passed away. He was my little dude and I miss him terribly.

Who was your favourite band/artist this year?

The urge to say Fleetwood Mac is hard to resist. As my friends and people who follow me on Instagram know they are my obsession and have been for the past few years now. My friends even threw me a Fleetwood Mac surprise party for my birthday this year where they dressed up as all the band members and we partied like rock stars. To keep it current though, an artist I’ve been really feeling lately is Hak Baker. He has an EP out called Misled and it’s magical.

Your favourite song of the year?

I’d say Wilshire by Tyler the Creator or Foot Forward by James Blake have to take my song of the year spot. I haven’t heard a rap track like that from Tyler or anyone really that has told a story so eloquently in a while, plus it’s like eight minutes long and I love a long song. Foot Forward has my lyric of the year in it – “it was built in a day, so it fell, in a day. What did you expect?” Beautiful.

Recommended album?

It didn’t come out in 2021, but I recommend a compilation album called Nigeria 70 – Lagos Jump, it’s full of beautiful high life music and I listen to it every day when I wake up. I particularly recommend the song Onyame. Amazing vibes.

Favourite TV show of the year?

Witcher. Henry Cavil. Anya Chalotra. Can’t ask for much more. Plus, I love video games, and the Witcher game is one of my favourites so I highly recommend it.

Your favourite film?

I’m not a big film person but I did love the Aretha Franklin biopic, RESPECT. I saw it in the cinema and was holding back tears.

Best book you read?

Violet Bent Backwards Over the Grass by Lana Del Rey. It’s a poetry anthology and it’s stuck with me all year.

Best podcast?

I think I’ve only listened to one podcast in my life and that’s the Sidemen podcast. I love their YouTube videos and the podcast is funny too.

Favourite venue of the year?

Got to give it to Bobik’s. I had a headline show there in the fall and it was an amazing experience.

What was your favourite gig/show of the year?

I got to perform alongside Smoove & Turrell for two nights in Newcastle and Sunderland. The energy of the crowd and the band was electric and I got to take the stage with Origin Crew, a dance troop made up of my childhood best friends. Being on stage with them in front of hundreds of people was a dream come true.

Any upcoming artists we should keep an eye out for in 2022?

I work with a charity called Northern Roots to support young artists and provide resources to help them achieve their potential so I have sooo many people to include here! There is Ayzee x Kaycee, a duo who have just dropped their first single Steppin’ and it’s a banger so definitely check them out on streaming when you get a chance. Also, SB Soulja and Breezy B another duo who have a song coming out early next year with their collaborator and amazing singer, Samuel. There is Maxine, a young soul/RnB singer with a single out called Let You Go that you will be singing in your head all day after listening to it one time so for sure check her out because she’s the future. As I said, so many to mention. Follow me on Instagram and keep up with Northern Roots events to see what everyone has coming.

And finally, what has next year got in store for you?

More music, more love, more life. God willing.

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