For Fans Of: Tierra Whack, Ariana Grande, Mahalia
26-years-old, Dallas-born, GRAMMY Award-nominated singer, songwriter, and boundary breaker Tayla Parx reimagines genre, gender, feminism, popular music, and the very definition of an artist.
Parx’s backstory is one of theatre and triple-threat talent as she was trained as a classical dancer by the age of seven. From ages 9-11, she spent two years performing in author, director and choreographer Debbie Allen’s play Dancing in the Wings in front of the likes of Diana Ross, Will Smith and Denzel Washington, getting used to star-studded audiences from a young age. This lead to film and TV roles such as Little Inez Stubbs in the film adaptation of Hairspray as well as cameos on Gilmore Girls and Everybody Hates Chris. Speaking of her acting career with Rolling Stone, she said “Music came first, but acting helped it evolve into a completely different story”.
Parx began her successful music career by co-writing with other singers, and now has a roster full of incredible big names. Within one year, she became the first female songwriter to have three simultaneous top 10 songs in the Billboard Hot 100 since 2014: Ariana Grande’s ‘7 Rings’ and ‘thank u, next’, and Panic! At The Disco’s double-platinum ‘High Hopes’. She also notably penned a total of six tracks on Grande’s blockbuster thank u, next album. Not to mention, she co-wrote double-platinum ‘Love Lies’ for Khalid and Normani, Anderson .Paak’s ‘Tints’ (feat. Kendrick Lamar), and four cuts on Janelle Monáe‘s Dirty Computer. The latter topped year-end lists by Associated Press, New York Times, and NPR and even received a GRAMMY nomination for Album of the Year.
This varied range of songwriting that’s spanned from R&B and hip-hop to pop, Kpop and country (achieved through a published deal with Jon Platt and Warner/Chappell) has aided her own career as now she knows exactly what she wants to put out into the world under her own moniker. She launched her solo career with the acclaimed 2017 Tayla Made mixtape and one-off singles such as ‘Runaway’ (feat. Khalid), which quickly clocked over 15.4 million Spotify streams within six months. However, everything set the stage for her 2019 full-length debut, WE NEED TO TALK. Driven by the single ‘I Want You’ and ballad ‘Easy’, it not only smashes boundaries, but starts a very important conversation. In an interview with Fuse, she discussed how the album was her way of expressing her views on gender and sexuality in the modern age: “The coolest thing about starting my own album is really getting across my ideas of feminism, my ideas of gender-reversal, genre, […] and breaking out of all those boxes. […] It’s been really fun to play with these different ideas and different roles and completely reverse them. In my song ‘Slow Dancing’, it truly does that.”
Since its release, she brought out follow-up single ‘Fight’ featuring country pop duo Florida Georgia Line last November. This genre was hinted at in her previous collections but not to the exceptional extent shown here. However, the three artists are heard performing with beautiful and natural cohesion in this unified track that’s structured as a back-and-forth conversation between a couple struggling in their relationship.
With a range of genres and styles up her sleeves, who knows where Tayla Parx will take her diverse sound next. But no matter the direction, it’s guaranteed to be a bop!introducing / tayla parx