Saya Gray was born into a musical family: Her father is a composer and trumpet player who has worked with the likes of Ella Fitzgerald and Aretha Franklin, and her mother founded Toronto music school Discovery Through The Arts. She spent her childhood developing prodigious bass skills that earned her a gig in R&B upstart Daniel Caesar’s band a few years back. Now she’s moving into the spotlight with a debut single of her own.
Gray’s bassist bona fides shine through immediately on “SHALLOW (PPL SWIM IN SHALLOW WATER),” a minimal yet complex track that might give you glimpses of Fiona Apple and Frank Ocean. “I love my enemies ’cause nobody hates myself more than me,” Gray sings before pushing her voice into a falsetto squeak. As the music rolls on, textures build and recede, creating a powerful sense of drama without even dropping a beat. Listen below.