Grayling Talks Music, Feminism, and Innovation with Trebel
2015 was a year of numerous displays of feminism from both within and outside the music industry. Women around the world fought period-shaming, dismissed the fear of female ambition, and spoke up about wage equality. Taylor Swift and her squad rolled out the music video to “Bad Blood” and Ariana Grande shut down sexism. It comes as no surprise that young women around the world are feeling more inspired than ever before. Lexi Campion of Grayling, a band that seeks to marry pop with grunge, falls into that category, having found inspiration from innovative female artists such as Taylor Swift, Lady Gaga, and Beyoncé.
Campion, a Sophomore in Drexel’s Music Industry Program, never expected to be launching her career as a singer-songwriter and front-woman. When asked about how her love for music began, she admitted “I wish I had some big story as to why, but I don’t know why.” Like many other artists, her respective form of expression is an integral part of her being, with no explanation as to where the love comes from, and rather that ‘it just is.’ Campion has only recently started taking songwriting seriously, with Grayling being the manifestation of this newfound passion. When asked what spurred this sudden interest, Campion said “I always thought I just wanted to play drums in a band, and that’s what I’d always want to do. But once I started doing that, I realized maybe I have more to say.”
Having more to say and speaking up is exactly what the new year seems to be about. Lady Gaga recently delivered a stand out performance at the Oscars, which Campion simply described as “incredible.” When asked about one of her biggest influences, she said “Gaga is brilliant. The fact that she can go on tour with Tony Bennett after having released Artpop, which was provocative and experimental, is just incredible.” What Campion admires most about the powerhouse females of the industry like Swift, Gaga, and Beyoncé, is the fact that they are phenomenal artists as well as branding, business, and industry innovators. Campion happily admitted she is “very obsessed with pop music.” Indicating her love for Beyoncé, she said “No one will ever surpass what she has done, in business or music.”
Another point of admiration is that those artists never seem to do the same thing twice, musically or otherwise. Campion hopes to stay true to always evolving by constantly “experimenting with new sounds” and searching for undiscovered territory, drawing from her initial aspiration of becoming a foley artist. When describing her music, Campion explained it as “My reaction to the things going on around me and evaluating where I stand. It’s about realizing when to step back and let people deal with their issues and not let it weigh me down when it has nothing to do with me.” Grayling’s new EP, “Everything That Burns,” to be released on April 15, can be expected to be a combination of social commentary and self-therapy, while still a strong symbol of empowerment for Campion.