Kevin Garrett On “Precious” & Writing A Song For Beyonce: Q&A
It’s difficult to speak of standouts on an album as consistently excellent as Beyonce’s Lemonade, but “Pray You Catch Me” is a contender. The haunting opening track is the handiwork of New York-based singer/songwriter Kevin Garrett, who has been pegged as One To Watch since the release of his debut EP in 2015. The buzz around him will only grow with the arrival of “Precious” — an emotionally confronting single with razor-sharp lyrics and moody production. “It’s a very personal song as per usual,” the 25-year-old says in our Q&A.
“I take the real moments and expand upon them for the sake of the point of the song.” That skill definitely shows on “Pray You Catch Me” — a gem that has introduced Kevin to a whole new audience. “To be a part of a Beyonce album, especially this one, is obviously a huge honor,” is his humble recap of the experience. “I’m more confident in my artistry and I have so much more to say… I’m really anxious to polish what I have and write some more new music.” Get to know the rising songsmith a little better below.
Is “Precious” based on a real life situation?
It’s a very personal song as per usual. I think I take the real moments and expand upon them for the sake of the point of the song, which is accessing confidence in being let down.
I love the acoustic version. Was “Precious” written on a guitar?
I actually wrote and produced it all at once in my bedroom, so I was on a few different instruments and my computer when I made it.
What inspired the sparse, electronic production?
I’ve always been aware of my influences but I think influences work when they are appropriately introduced and adapted. So I think doing this song completely on my own had the biggest influence on production.
Is there an EP or album coming?
Yep, and I want to put out several albums. Too many things to talk about.
I love the song with KINGDM. Are there any more collaborations on the way?
I have a wishlist like everybody else. There may be some things happening, but I love the idea of more collabs.
Your songs are quite intense. Can we expect something more upbeat in the future?
There’s been a new source of inspiration in my life for a little while that’s gotten me to write from another few angles. So maybe, but the album in general has been sort of refining itself conceptually since I started writing it.
How did you get signed to Roc Nation?
They heard some of my demos and we worked out a publishing deal. Later on, I partnered with them for management as well. I’m still an independent artist right now.
How did the opportunity to work with Beyonce arise?
When I linked with Roc Nation, I found out she was a fan of my music and that opportunity happened pretty organically.
What was it like to work on Lemonade?
To be a part of a Beyonce album, especially this one, is obviously a huge honor.
Were you told the concept before writing “Pray You Catch Me”?
No, I was not.
What has changed for you since writing that song?
If anything, I’m more confident in my artistry and I have so much more to say. I’ve been doing most of the same thing. Writing and touring and working on my music. I’m really anxious to polish what I have and write some more new music.
Are you writing songs for anyone else?
I just wrote Justine Skye’s newest single “U Don’t Know” featuring Wizkid. Aside from that, I’m trying to focus on my own stuff and keep building what I’ve done so far on my own, but it hasn’t taken me completely out of the world of writing for others.