10 p.m. Sept. 5
Arts, Beats & Eats National Music Stage
Seventh and Center Streets, Royal Oak
Maybe you forgot about Macy Gray. Not that anyone could: She’s a loopy, 6-foot-tall standout with a distinctive, soulful rasp. But Gray’s success since the monster hit “I Try” has been just that – try after try. To make a big impression again, she released what she calls her best album yet – “The Sellout” – earlier this summer, and she’ll perform during Arts, Beats & Eats at 10 p.m. Sept. 5 on the National Music Stage at Seventh and Center Streets in Royal Oak.
Gray buzzed us to talk about the gayest song on her fifth album, the beauty in her own world and the trip she wants to take – to the afterlife.
Tell me about the beauty in your own world.
Lots now: The music I make, my kids and my family. I think I’ve grown up in the last couple of years – finally – and I feel better about a lot of things. And what else? I don’t know. There’s tons of it! It’s hard to list it all.
So what’s caused you to grow up?
Too many mistakes. I had to stop and get myself together. It’s cool to be carefree and all that shit, but at some point you have to know what you’re doing (laughs) and be committed to something, and I really just got around to that the last couple of years. And I can tell I’m doing a lot better.
Would you say you’re weird?
Am I weird? Absolutely! I see things a little differently. What makes you different is really what you want out of life.
What do you want?
I would like to die for two weeks and see what it’s all about, but then I want to come back. I’m just really fascinated by what goes on when someone passes away, because obviously it’s not over. I’d just like to get a peek into what’s in store for me.
You talk about how you can’t tell if you’re going to heaven or hell on the song “Help Me.” What would send you to hell?
I’ve done lots of things, I’m sure, that God doesn’t approve of.
What song on the album do you think your gay fans will most get a kick out of?
Probably “Kissed It,” because it’s a song about sex – this relationship that I stay in because the oral sex is so great.
Why has it been a struggle to achieve the same success as your debut, “On How Life Is”?
Only in America. In Europe I did really well with all my albums. It’s different; they’re a lot more open to music in Europe, like they know every American artist, but we probably only know a few European artists.
More than anything I just want to do something epic. I want to do something historical, like Frank Sinatra’s “My Way” or Michael Jackson’s “Billie Jean.” Something people never forget.
(Editor’s Note: This article originally appeared in the June 3 edition of Between The Lines. For the full interview, visit }https://www.pridesource.com/article.html?article=41652