Koren Grace’s Music for Mental Health

Koren Grace’s voice is as depthful and complex as her songs. “Fun” for instance, from Grace’s The I.D. & The Ego EP, wears the mask of bright joy. Although the chorus is a soulful reminiscence of “Girls Just Want To Have Fun,” the lyrics and smooth jazz tell the story of confidence with one’s identity. It’s about strength and comfortably. Mental health, really, which is more of a revolving theme around Grace’s work. All My Friends, her most recent EP, is a clear example of that.

If you don’t believe me, here’s Grace stating it herself, “I started going to therapy just before the project came about and one of the first journeys I informed my therapist I wanted to go on was why I couldn’t keep friends, why I made friendships and they tend to fizzle out super quick and why I was enduring a lot of emotional distress in these friendships. I was just really over dealing with people who seemed like they didn’t enjoy being in my life. I had to do a lot of innerwork to figure out how to do my best to avoid that moving forward and I think this EP was an amazing representation of me getting to move on and realizing my own strength.”

Something we all have been discovering during this pandemic, but a journey of self-discovery is never unwanted. While All My Friends was released in November of 2020, there are still a few surprises coming. Grace said, “I still have a few more goals with the All My Friends EP that I want to see through but I am always writing, always coming up with project concepts. I am working on a song right now with a writer that is going to be in a different language which is pretty cool because I write all my songs so that was definitely an experience writing a song with someone else and making sure that I am pronouncing the words correctly, etc.”

I don’t believe I would have ever thought to test my hand in an art form in a foreign language. But as we’ve all struggled to create new experiences while locked indoors, I can understand its appeal. It’s something new. A first time when first times may be running out, particularly for a seasoned hand such as Grace.

When asked what it meant for Grace to be a musician, Grace said, “Wow, you know if you asked me this a few months ago I know that my answer would be so completely different than the one I am about to give you. Recently to me being an artist means restoration and balance to refind my center. I am doing my best at relaxing a bunch without feeling guilty or pressured to continue working. Especially when I know I might not have a lot to give at the moment. Going viral last year gave me a false sense of security so now that the smoke is settling I am trying to figure out what life in music is going to look like for me next and that looks a lot like following through with what I already promised myself I would do before all of that. I thought I had to change my plans to fit others and all the while people found me from me just being myself and I think that is what I will continue to do.”

To the relief and pleasure of Grace’s fans, who are impatiently waiting for more music. Myself included, can’t wait for the release of Grace’s new project.

Until then, “I want to say thank you so much for supporting my music. I am really looking forward to this journey that we are on together. It means so much to me that my music has found its way into serenading and soundtracking your lives. I am mind blown every day by the fact that you all enjoy my music. I’m glad that it can be there for y’all the way ya’ll are there for me. I love y’all!” said Grace.

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