Story Slaughter is a Dallas Texas born Country singer-songwriter currently residing in LA. She is very true to herself and writes about personal experiences, giving you an insight each time you listen. Last year saw the release of her debut single ’Ranch Water’ letting us see the vulnerable side to Story. New single ‘Electric Pink Guitar’ sees her sound take a more upbeat turn, merging the mellow and the partying vibes from both her states influences whilst keeping a lyrical narrative throughout. We chatted to Story, about her new release, what she learnt last year and her views on the year ahead.
Hey! Firstly ‘Electric Pink Guitar’ is such a fun song. What was the process of collaborating like on this?
That song came after ‘Ranch Water’ and that one is a little bit different, it’s more moody and vulnerable. So, with ‘Electric Pink Guitar’ I wanted to show I am also capable of having a good time. A lot of the music I grew up on back in Texas was 90’s country, so even when something is a sadder song, the tune is still really happy, you’d still get on up and dance to it. Shania Twain and Faith Hill do a good job of this. I challenged myself to do the same thing.
What was it like growing up in Texas, how does this influence your music?
It was so great! It was hot, we had terrible weather. My father worked at this magazine at the time called,’Cowboys and Indians’ and part of his work was to interview a bunch of country music stars, so our house was always filled with that type of music. I think that that era, especially for females in country music, was really special, so the Dixie Chicks, Martina Mcbride, Faith Hill and Trisha YearWood. I had these powerful female voices in my house at all times. It’s cool when you’re listening to a genre and they’re speaking about the iconography of the south, when they mention where they come from and when you look out your window it’s the same thing. It felt as if these people were very much speaking to me and my experiences, even though universally they’re loved. Texas is a huge part of my life, I grew up there until I was 18-years and I go home any chance I get, the people there are really kind and I’m really close with my family, they’re very excited about this adventure for me. Texas is great, though I don’t know if I could ever live there again, the bugs and the heat are too much.
On the theme of ‘Electric Pink Guitar’ if your music was a colour, what colour would it be?
I guess I am tempted to say pink, but I feel it would be more of a mix of pink and blue, it would be a Lilac purple, something happy. A mix of the feminine, fun, girly, happy pink and then the more somber thoughtful blue.
‘Ranch Water’ hasn’t been out long either, how did you feel putting something you’ve created into the world for the first time ever?
I feel I couldn’t have done it if it wasn’t for the Pandemic, because it put me in a healthy headspace of ‘What do I have to lose? Even though it is scary and vulnerable to put something into the world and see what they have to say or think, I also was feeling like, ‘If everybody else can do it, why can’t I?’ It was scary, but not as scary as I thought it would be but I was in the frame of mind, do it, because the world could end tomorrow. Especially with our politics in America, it was a very tumultuous time. I was like ‘Lets just do it’, in a morbid way, I knew I had to make music before I go, before I die, but it helped me to produce something very positive.
The restrictions of the pandemic have been a little different in America, but how did they affect the production of your music?
I wrote both of these songs alongside Barkley’ we wrote them in her front yard opposite sides, outside and bundled up because it gets a little bit chilly here in LA. It did have a kind of distance to it, but we were so excited to hang out with a friend even if it was across a yard. The song writing was really fun in that way, but in n terms of production, everyone had to get tested before we could all go in. Martius Amora is the genius who’s produced both these songs, he has an in-house studio, thankfully it was just him and I getting tested, quarantining, and meeting up to record the song in his house. There wasn’t anybody else involved in the recording process.
On your instagram you shared an image in relation to the Black Lives Matter campaign, can you talk about why that’s particularly important to you?
In this crazy way I feel God worked in the pandemic in such a beautiful way for Black Lives Matter because, I’m the first to say that even before the movement, I would have said I’m a deeply empathetic person and non-racist, but I had so much to learn. Being in the stillness of the pandemic and having the time to learn, being informed across social media, without distraction on what was happening to Black people in America, I mean it just broke me open in this way of oh my gosh. It changed my life, and I think it changed the lives of so many, to open our eyes truly for the first time and see what was happening to our brothers and sisters made me so angry. And having a talk with myself, like oh wow Story, you haven’t been doing the work, and you really are very privileged to not have to wake up and think about your race everyday, my goodness. I’m so grateful this happened within the pandemic, as horrible as it is, I’m in a city, I got to witness and cheer on these insanely powerful marches and get to join in. It’s such an incredible time and it’s been a super sad time for everyone around the world, but especially for our country and so the need to create and to make something even happier and vulnerable in this period has been a huge influence, you know, like using your voice. It is terrible that it had to come to this place, for us to open up and learn, but it’s definitely a new vocation of listening, learning and actually acting now.
Who is your biggest influence?
Any of my friends who have the courage to create, because I’m like if they can do it then I can do that too, be that a fellow; musician, artist or actors just anybody who has the willingness and the bravery to pursue their dreams. Not for any reason other than they have the heart because of course there are millions of famous people who are a huge influence and a huge inspiration. I don’t know exactly how they got to where they’re at, where as I am watching my friends progress, that is hugely inspirational to me.
If you could support one artist’s show ( dead or alive) who would it be ?
Lin Manuel Miranda, I think he is the genius poet of our time, so cool. I’d have him teach me anything.
Finally, Who are you counting in?
I have a list of friends who I think are gonna be huge, my three friends off the top of my brain are Rachael Matthews, Dillan Mctee, and Mackenzie Breeden, those are three names that I believe in, that are gonna be big at some point.