Meet John Grvy: Sample-Heavy R&B Modernist

Né(e): J.E. Edward
Raíces: Madrid, España
Sounds like: nu R&B with a twist, Blood Orange with more modern urban radio in the mix
You should listen to John Grvy because…he has released two songs you will not stop listening to and this is just the beginning.

Upon listening to his songs, you’ll notice a quality to John Grvy’s songs that few artists can evoke: it sounds both familiar and hard to pin down. While the melodies come smoothly, the rhythms aren’t bouncy as much as they are insistent, and his use of other sounds are both chill and edgy. There’s a clash between recent R&B modernists, sampler-happy acid heads, and synth-pop-like sounds in his songs “Mad On Her” and “Just Right Here.” It doesn’t hurt that Gray has a voice that reminds this listener of TV On The Radio’s Tunde Adebimpe.

While there’s hip-hop to be found in his flavor, John’s tools and execution are varied and not defined by genre. In interviews, he has cited Animal Collective, James Blake, and Robin Thicke as references. He has recorded several songs (which he plans to release as singles) that, according to him, have a more varied sound than what we have heard so far.

The Madrid resident started making music at age 16 when a friend urged him to rap but quickly got bored with the game. He got into music through his stepdad’s record collection, which spanned from Daft Punk to Fela Kuti. He then got into chopping beats and experimenting with atmospheric music, discovering other bedroom producers and pushing himself to do better stuff. He admits his inspiration is women but also name checks Friedrich Nietzsche and Ernest Hemingway among his influences.