The fall and rise of Macy Gray


ONWARD AND UPWARD WITH THE ARTS about singer/songwriter Macy Gray, 29… Writer attends a promotional “showcase” at the Bowery Ballroom for Gray… Her album, “Macy Gray on How Life Is,” won’t be released until late July, but her label, Epic Records, has already begun, as an executive at the company puts it, “organically seeding the record out.”… A futuristic video of one of the songs, “Do Something,” which was shot by a highly-regarded director named Mark Romanek, has been broadcast on MTV… She has been likened, variously, to Nina Simone, Al Green, Janis Joplin, Joe Cocker, Rod Stewart (on helium), and Louis Armstrong… Writer tells where she was when she first heard one of Gray’s songs… Tells about Gray’s history, including a failed marriage, a failed record deal with Atlantic Records, and three children… Jeff Blue, a vice-president of Zomba Music Publishing, explained to writer why he signed her… She eventually signed with Epic… Blue was optimistic that her songs would be used in movies and on television… Writer interviews Polly Anthony, the president of Epic, and Andrew Slater, the producer of her new album… Describes a Japanese photo shoot/radio-spot session Gray does on a Santa Monica beach, and a subsequent trip in a town car with Gray, back and forth across Los Angeles, while Gray looks for an issue of Vibe which has a story about her in it… Gray says that if she becomes a star she will complete the four albums she is contracted for, then retire to France with her children… Describes the upbeat music-industry scene at a Viper Room concert she gives…

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