Check out our interview with talented artist Violet Grae who just released her new single “BYOB.”
Violet Grae is a punch visually and vocally! If you like power houses like Christina Aguilera, SZA and if you like PINK you will love Violet. Violet sings of empowerment, individualism and symbolizes these bold initiatives with her personal style and grace. This experienced artist and advocate has been trained in various musical styles including rock, theater, jazz, blues, funk, pop, soul, opera, and R&B.
Violet is a Berklee College of Music Alumnus, majoring in Music Business Management and Vocal Performance. Being an artist for over a decade and helping the dreams for many artists along the way, has inspired her to launch her company “Grae Agency”, LA’s leading inclusive and full faceted boutique. She advocates for equality and transparency throughout her career. As an artist, business owner, mentor, and songwriter, Violet helps facilitate the opportunities for POC, LGTQIA+, women, and indie artists that have strong messages. Violet is fiercely committed to the development of fellow artists and offers her skills and passions while addressing both the craft and each artist’s unique narrative.
Follow Violet @violetgrae
Describe yourself in 3 words?
Resilient, Authentic, and Bold.
How did you get started in the business?
I have been a performer for as long as I can remember. I started touring and performing with bands at the age of fifteen. Being an artist I have learned so much during this unparalleled journey, I slowly started working with other musicians and vocalists along the way. I have worked with over seven hundred songbirds by this point in my career.
How has this changed your life?
I felt lucky that I found what I truly love to do early in my life. I was honestly a very shy and incredibly quiet kid growing up. It was even an ongoing saying in my family, I only speak when it is extremely important. So listen! I found my voice through performance. When I was singing I could finally express myself fearlessly and could finally share my voice.
We’re sure you have been asked this million times but how did you get in the industry?
I started singing with my older brother’s band when I was a teenager. This snowballed into me wanting to do it for a living, going to Berklee College of Music for it, and fronting several bands. I wanted to learn everything about music, performance, and the music industry. The more knowledge I gained, the more I wanted to share and advocate for other artists as well. There are so many times earlier in my career I felt lost or alone. I want the artists that I work with to always know I am in their corner!
Describe your sound in 3 words?
Emotionally: Powerful, Rhapsodic, Bodacious
Genre: Pop, Hip Hop, R&B
Who influenced you and why did you choose to make music?
My biggest influences are vocalists that emote with their voices. They somehow communicate their sadness or happiness. I was expressing earlier that I was quiet and music to me was my language. It is how I showed my joy, sadness, or pain. Specific women in music that have changed my life would be Billie Holiday, Janis Joplin, Nina Simone, Jill Scott, and Christina Aguilera. The most important variable and influence though would be my mother. She is an exceptional music educator and can literally play everything. I was consumed in music for as long as I can remember.
Do you play any instrument?
I was classically trained in both voice and piano.
Do you ever get nervous?
I actually do, and I am happy that I do. I think nerves and excitement are the best facets of performing. The pure adrenaline that comes with being so vulnerable makes it the most rewarding feeling on the planet.
Tell us about your new single “BYOB?”
BYOB is fun, sensual, bold and encourages the listener to discard gender stereotypes and to reclaim your power. The song is meant to facilitate acceptance. Redefining ‘bitch’, means we need to actually verbalize it in public. We shouldn’t fear saying it! The less we use the word, the more power we give to the incorrect definition, because it has been incorrectly defined. Let’s stop associating strong, powerful resilient women with negativity.
What’s the story behind the song?
My entire persona as an artist is a statement of advocacy, self-love, defiance and female empowerment. The song is an anthem for independence and is meant to be enjoyed by everyone. BYOB stands for: bring your own bitch, babe, or boy etc. When I am dating, the most attractive quality is having someone that wants you but does not need you.
What is the most rewarding part of your work?
Performing is the most rewarding thing to me on this planet, and I am endlessly grateful that I still have an audience that wants to listen. This has allowed me to spread messages that are important to me and the community. This has also been a vehicle to help share the spotlight with other emerging artists. I founded “Grae Agency” an inclusive artist boutique this year. I wanted to give a home to artists that may have been turned away because of who they are, who they love, or how they look.
What book should every entrepreneur read?
My favorites as an entrepreneur and female in the music industry are:
Joan Jett’s- Bad Reputation Biography
Jen Sincero’s- You are a Bad Ass
Sophia Amoruso’s- Girlboss
Ari Herstand’s- How to Make it in the New Music Business
What would say are the greatest lessons you learned so far?
I have learned so much about myself, others, and the business in general. Being in music is undoubtedly hard yet exhilarating. I only know very few people that last on this rollercoaster. There will be times that test the hell out of you. Every time I thought I might step off of this ride, I am so happy I decided to go for another round.
The advice I give and live by is to always be a light, live authentically, love unconditionally, and to be compassionate.
How would your best friend describe you?
They would say I’m their rock and backbone. I am the friend that shows up no matter what is going on in my life! You can call if you need to cry, vent, dance at a random event, best wing woman on this earth, and if you need serious back up! I love and protect my tribe.
What’s next for Violet Grae in 2021?
2021 is going to be a big year! I will be releasing a lot of new music, performing at Queer X Fest this fall, teaming up with Activista Record Label, and introducing new artists that have just joined the Grae Agency family.
What is your favorite healthy food?
I pretty much like anything green, and I do not eat meat. Being healthy and active are incredibly important to me.
And your favorite cheat food?
When I am super exhausted I treat myself to doughnuts and pizza hut.
How would you explain your fashion style?
I would say my style is edgy meets femme.
What is your own definition of happiness?
My definition of happiness is liking and accepting what you see in your own reflection. Not the way you look, it’s how you feel about the way you decide to move in this world.
If you could meet someone living or dead, who would it be and why?
I would pinch myself if I could sing back up or jam with Joe Cocker, Janis Joplin, or Aretha Franklin. And possibly share banter and a drink with Billie Holiday.
Best advice ever given?
It’s okay to cry tonight, but get back up tomorrow.
Do you support any charity?
The Trevor Project, Trans Women of Color Collective, and Building Futures with Children and Women.
Where do you see yourself and your career in 5 years from now?
I will still be creating and advocating, but I see myself expanding! I am teaming up with a few new platforms this year and can’t wait to be impacting even more lives in a positive way.
Favorite song? Why?
Feeling Good by Nina Simone. This specific song single handedly has helped me through the lowest times in my life, has opened doors, and singing it for over a decade still empowers me like nothing else.
What do you think of Social Media?
Social media and I have a love and hate relationship. I love that I can connect with listeners, other artists, or discover new talent/collaborators through my phone. But I do feel it can be hard for the younger generation. I think there is a sense of unattainable perfection that is not reality.
Where can we follow you?
Social links: and websites:
Book: Bicycle Diaries by David Byrnes
Quote: “There is only a queer divine dissatisfaction, a blessed unrest that keeps us marching and makes us more alive than others.” -Martha Graham
Movie: Hook / The wive’s Club
Tv Series: Drunk History and The L Word. (Queer and a history nerd lol)
Favorite Food: Anything Italian
Travel Destination: Monaco or Lake Como
Sports Team: Steelers