Episode 23: Interview with Griz! GRiZ is a Michigan-born electronic music producer and musician who has attracted an enormous live following, regularly playing major festivals and selling out headlining tours. Referring to his music as “future funk,” GRiZ produces glitchy, energetic tracks with booming dubstep bass and elements of jazz, hip-hop, and soul.
Born Grant Kwiecinski in Southfield, Michigan in 1990, he began playing alto saxophone and piano as a youth, and dropped out of Michigan State University in order to pursue a career as a musician. His debut album, End of the World Party, was released in 2011 by Mochipet’s Daly City label, and its sample-heavy downtempo tracks made a splash online. The saxophone-wielding musician began supporting popular touring electronic acts such as Bassnectar and Pretty Lights, leading to his own successful headlining tours.
His self-released second album, Mad Liberation, appeared in 2012, followed by the more socially conscious Rebel Era in 2013. His fourth album, 2015’s Say It Loud, featured numerous guest vocalists (including Talib Kweli and Ivan Neville) and an increased presence of live instrumentation, working toward more of a vintage funk sound while remaining contemporary. GRiZ stuck with the organic funk approach for 2016’s Good Will Prevail. His fifth album, it featured guest appearances from Eric Krasno, Big Gigantic, Muzzy Bear, and others. He’s working on new music — including a sixth studio album to follow-up 2016’s Good Will Prevail. But GRiZ cautions against anyone holding their breath waiting for it to surface imminently.