Photos courtesy of Grace Tyler.
Sometimes a young artist comes along and you just know — that guy or girl is destined to do something special. When I saw Grace Tyler perform live for the first time about a year ago here in Frisco, it was clear – this girl's got something.
Grace Tyler is part of what I consider to be the next movement of musicians emerging across the growing music scene in Frisco (and in Nashville…but we'll get to that in a minute).
A senior at Wakeland High School and only 17 years old, Grace Tyler has performed at the Frisco Rail Yard, The Gin, Love & War, and Southern Junction, among many other local venues, events, and festivals. She even auditioned for American Idol and made it to the Celebrity Judges Round (where she got a “yes” from Luke Bryan).
Now, she's gearing up for her second appearance at the Off The Rails Country Music Fest at Toyota Stadium on May 5th. Between school, music, and church, I had a chance to talk to Grace about what's new and what we can look forward to at OTR next month.
Grace Tyler: I'm so excited for what is in store for me this upcoming year. I am finally making the move from Texas to Nashville, TN and will be majoring in Music Business at Belmont University. I also have new music coming out which I'm super excited to share.
LsF: How did you get involved in music?
GT: Music has been a huge part of my life since I can remember. In elementary school, I would go to karaoke bars and perform there. I'm pretty sure that is the point that I fell in love with music.
LsF: You had the opportunity to perform for Nash Next at Southern Junction. How did that come about? Tell us about your experience during that event.
GT: Nash Next was one of the coolest experiences I have ever been involved in. I submitted one of my original songs to the competition and was selected as a Top 5 finalist which was very cool because it was selected from hundreds of songs. Before the live competition, 96.3 KSCS and 99.5 The Wolf both played my song. It was so cool to hear my song on the radio. I really received a lot of support from them playing that song. Unfortunately, I didn't win or advance to the national level but I had a great opportunity to meet so many talented musicians and music industry professionals. I gained so much knowledge and learned what I need to work on and where I needed to improve. That experience pushed me to really focus on being my best.
LsF: Where are some of your favorite places to play?
GT: I'm pretty lucky to be able to play so many incredible local venues throughout Frisco and the DFW area. These venues stick out to me as of late: The Gin in Prosper, Lava Cantina, and Love and War. Each of these venues has a very different vibe and stage but some of my favorite and best performances have been at these venues. The Gin has such an interactive crowd and I'm blown away each time I go there and feel the support from the crowd.
Playing on the stage at Lava Cantina is really hard to beat because of the size of it. I've been so blessed to share the stage with ridiculously talented artists like Wade Bowan, Stoney LaRue, and Mike Ryan. Lastly, Love and War brings out the true image of what country music is or should be…
Another venue where I've been blessed to open for many talented artists Like Parker McCollum, Bri Bagwell, Pauline Reese, Mark Mckinny, and many more.
LsF: How did you get involved with Off The Rails?
GT: The first year I performed at Off The Rails it was such a dream come true. An artist they had scheduled for the event got really sick and I was called in last minute to fill in as a local Frisco artist. When I was asked back this year by AEG Presents I was so excited. Being able to play in my backyard and home is amazing.
LsF: Who is someone that you're looking forward to seeing this year at Off The Rails?
GT: This is probably going to sound super cheesy but I'm really looking forward to seeing all of the artists. When the lineup was announced I was so happy. I'm a huge Luke Combs fan and spent about two months playing and listening to “Beautiful Crazy” on repeat.
LsF: What are some of the local bands or artists that you're really into today?
GT: That's a pretty tough question because I've worked with so many great talented artists and bands, and listen to a lot of people. I would say Peyton Stilling, Christopher Mills, and Todd Stewart are for sure on the list. Also, Remy Reilly and Frankie Leonie. Just to name a few…
Grace Tyler will be performing at Off The Rails May 5 – 6 at Toyota Stadium in Frisco. For her complete line up of tour dates and updates, visit her website.