In 2025, someone will be reading this article, and be thinking “wow, this was from before Jack Gray was huge.”
After hearing his second-latest single “Fools,” I knew it would be inevitable; Jack Gray is going to be making music for a long time, and people are going to start realizing how ridiculously talented he is. His voice, an unabashedly aussie croon with rich character and absurd range, is the perfect medium for his prodigious songwriting. He can play guitar (like, actually play, instead of strumming the same few chords and moving a capo), and produces his own music with the musicianship and technical ear of an industry veteran. And, perhaps most importantly, he has the hair for it.
We wanted to jump on the bandwagon before it was too late, because we love hearing how great artists make their music. Give his a listen, then check out the story behind Jack’s writing and the song “Fools” below.
Also, you should follow him on
to make sure you don’t miss anything. And here’s his website.
How did you start making music?
I’ve been playing music for as long as I can remember but I only started writing when I got to high school. I got into a duo and we were playing pubs every weekend and eventually we decided we wanted to make an EP. So that kinda forced me to start writing.
Who are your influences?
I have so many influences! It’s probably why my music has a wide range of genres coming through. When I first really got into music, I was listening to heaps of Aussie bands like Boy and Bear, Ball Park Music, and Sticky Fingers. Then when I left school I was listening to heaps of stuff out of the UK like Jack Garret, Nothing But Thieves, and a bit of Coldplay. and also started to get a little more into the urban world with dudes like J Cole and Drake.
How do you write lyrics?
I think you just have to have something to say! Unless you know what you wanna talk about then what’s the point. How could I expect other people listen to my music if it’s just the same regurgitated concept as everything else that’s on the radio. And also you have to believe that you’re a songwriter. You have to be able to accept your own lyrics as genuine ideas.
How do you write melodies?
Generally I start mumbling into my mic or voice memos on my phone is the easiest way to get my ideas out. I have a terrible memory so if I sing something cool and wanna come back to it 5 minutes later but I didn’t record it, well I guess I just can’t because chances are I’ve already forgotten it.
Would you rather write about personal experiences or general themes?
Honestly I don’t really have a preference! Whatever I’m inspired about at the time is what matters!
What makes a song good?
So many things. but mainly it’s the lyrics and melody! Production dates really quickly but a good story is timeless!
What advice would you give to other songwriters?
Write everyday and enjoy it! The only way to get better is by doing it. So do it, and you’ll win 😉
How did you start writing “Fools,” and how long did it take to finish?
I wrote this song when I first moved to Sydney in 2017. I made like 8 different versions of it and ended up going with the first one. I think I captured something in the original demo that I couldn’t quite replicate!
Describe the idea behind the lyrics for someone who’s never heard the song.
It’s about being in a relationship with somebody who’s toxic for you, and losing a bunch of good friends because they couldn’t put up with her shit. I also threw in some conversational/situational lines about being broke and needing to get my license to make it feel more personal and pretty much because I love that kinda stuff.
The production is dope; has a big push-and-pull feel from line to line, and love all the guitar lines. How’d it come together?
Thanks! Yeah I love playing around with heaps of quirky sounds and guitar riffs and seeing what comes out! I usually just throw too many ideas at the wall and cull the nonsense once I have some perspective. This song was interesting because it came together very quickly, but like I said before, it took so many versions for me to realize that what I had first take was right, that the process was longer than most.
What do you want listeners to take away from the song? (Either thematically, about you as an artist, or both.)
I guess I want people to wanna hear more. I love it when I’m “vibing” a new song and I hear new things on every listen! I put heaps of time into the smaller details of my work so I’d like to think other people have a similar experience with my stuff 🙂
Any new music in the works?
Heaps of new songs in the works! I never stop writing so I’ve got plenty to choose from. I feel like I’ve just gotten to a place where I’m ready to start releasing a lot more music so get ready.
Are there any touring plans we should know about?
I’m getting ready to head to the US for a North American tour supporting Maisie Peters. The first show is in New York on the 7th of October! But I think I’ll be on the road for the most part next year so I’m pumped for that!