Interview: On Gavin DeGraw’s ‘Make A Move’, He Doesn’t Want to Be Anything But a Co-Writer
The whole music industry has changed since Gavin DeGraw made his debut 10 years ago with Chariot. In 2003, DeGraw was classified as a singer-songwriter, but he’s not too sure that’s how people would describe him today.
“When I put that [Chariot] out, what we called a singer-songwriter was a very safe sound,” he told Radio.com. “Even artists who were really gifted had sounds that if we categorized it now we would call it safe. At this point, I never would have been able to get away with the production that’s on my album now 10 years ago and been called ‘singer-songwriter.’ They would have said, ‘Oh, it’s too all over the place.’ Or, ‘Some of the songs are too edgy.’”
He added: “Something beautiful happened with the landscape of music in that we’re able to take much bigger risks with the production within every genre.”
While the music world continues to evolve, the power a song has on listeners hasn’t changed. “I Don’t Want To Be,” a song that DeGraw wrote over a decade ago, has survived the test of time due to its honesty and relatability. When Radio.com sat down with DeGraw during record release week for his fifth studio album Make A Move, the singer talked of embracing co-writers on his new LP and the story behind that infamous hit. The New York native split his time between Los Angeles and Nashville to write and record the album, but reminisced on beginning his career in the Big Apple.
“I still love New York. There are elements of it that I still romanticize,” he confessed. “Those bits of the struggle that were so tough because there is something beautiful about having to claw your way through it if you can do it. I look back on it and go, ‘Wow, I can’t believe it was so difficult.’”