CRAY at Lolla 2019
Photo: Daniel Mendoza/Recording Academy
CRAY Talks Singing Live For The First Time At Lollapalooza & Touring Japan With Skrillex
Gamer-turned-singer/DJ/producer CRAY has an infectious energy both on and off stage. The Croc-loving artist—whose stage moniker is a childhood nickname adapted from her full name, Cheney Ray—started DJing and making electronic music for fun shortly after relocating from Vancouver to Los Angeles for college. In 2016, she put out her catchy first single, "Infinity Signs," and quickly started to make a name for herself in the indie-electro scene.
Fast-forward to 2019: CRAY is playing major festivals across the country, dropping new tracks along the way and even has a Japanese tour with GRAMMY-winning electronic legend Skrillex under her belt. While On The Road at Lollapalooza 2019, the Recording Academy sat down with her right after she debuted new music—while singing live for the first time—during her set.
So, you performed earlier today here at Lolla, how did it feel? How was the vibe?
I mean, it was the first time I ever sang live. So it was very intense and I almost barfed, in a good way. But it was incredible, honestly just being able to do that. We've been working so hard to get there. I'm transitioning to being a live act, so being able to sing at Lolla for the first time was a really amazing accomplishment.
That's awesome. Did you have a lot of nerves going in? And then once you did it, did it feel like a relief?
Yes, I was shaking at first, and then I started and…everything went away. And then after, I was like, "What the hell just happened?" And I almost barfed, it was good.
Thank you @lollapalooza for having me. Singing live for the first time truly opened up my entire self. I’m so excited for the future. Thank you guys for being so open and for all ur energy today. Happiest day I’ve had in EVERpic.twitter.com/8TMSPvEcnq
— CRAY (@craysounds_) August 2, 2019
You did it! That's awesome. And you're doing an Aftershow here also tonight; are you looking forward to that?
Yes, I am.
Are you going for more of a nighttime vibe?
Yeah, I'll play a little harder, a little more fun, a little more night time stuff. Because today was more my stuff and my singing and everything. But tonight I'll be a little more afterparty vibes, which I'm excited about. I'm still going to keep the hair in, it hits people, I like it. But I'm excited to play. I love Chicago, I love being here, I love the crowd, I love the people here. I'm excited.
And you've been up to a lot lately. I think last year you went on tour with Skrillex?
I did, yeah.
What was that like?
It was an incredible experience, Sonny [Moore a.k.a. Skrillex] is an incredible human being and so open and honest and I felt so inspired. I've never been to Japan. I've never been that far away, ever. So going there was so eye-opening of the world and different cultures. And their music and food and people and customs, it was beautiful to learn that. I felt really, honestly, blessed to be a part of it, and also so inspired. I came back home and was like, I gotta work harder. I gotta keep going. It was awesome.
— CRAY (@craysounds_) August 4, 2019
Are there any artists you're excited to see at Lollapalooza?
Yeah, I want to see Yaeji. Bring Me The Horizon I want to see as well, and Death Cab for Cutie. I kind of want to go back to old-school stuff, some more band type stuff. Party Favor is playing, he's a good guy. There's a lot of fun stuff happening. I'm really excited.