The hyper-creative shares new music, and gets candid on the importance of friends and mental health.

Ever smiley dreamy-eyed Zach Taylor is shapeshifting music with aim to spread love, light and joy; his honesty and optimism is infectious and sparks magic in his music. Ever creating with his friends in the spirit of unity, the Spokane-raised, Nashville-based singer/songwriter released All the Ways We Are Together, planting 1500 trees in partnership with One Tree Planted and mailed out packets of marigold seeds for fans to plant around the world over the pandemic. Now he’s finally able to tour again, and recently released new music like; Keep The Pace with hints of alt-pop, R&B, sprinkled with a little upbeat Talking Heads kind of vibe, he sings about just keeping up like we all get caught up doing yet someone makes it happy.

Swirling together something electronic, R&B, folk, disco, and contemporary pop; he sings about love; romantic, self love, community love and love of the environment around us—“You have to love yourself to love others,” he says. Only in his 20’s his wisdom eclipses many twice his age, there is a depth to him and his music that resonates when you listen and the peace he wishes you to feel appears. His music is rightfully defined by many as genre-less and the latest catchy mantra-esque singles with slo-mo funky beats whisper: “Keep your head up baby, you’re doing fine.” College years brought him an intense period of personal growth where he worked to free himself from “toxic, immature thoughts” and embrace positivity and joy, and it shows. His sophomore album is sonically diverse, can appeal to any audience with dreamy sounds, deep lyrics and mesmerizing beats that ooze a coolness incomparable to another. We had the chance to chat all things music, love, friends, mental health, Kayne West to Childish Gambino, if fashion has a soul and what’s next.

Check out the interview below…

How did growing up in Washington then Nashville influence your art?
I grew up in the south for most of my early childhood, Texas and Alabama, then moving to Washington for high school really opened my eyes to embracing more of my individuality and discovered the creativity and love for music that was not so easily expressed until then. Moving to Nashville only opened my eyes up further, being surrounded by so many other artists and musicians I was able to learn and grow with those around me.

What are your favorite things to do in Nashville, outside of making music?
Love taking trips out to the lake, or floating down the river with some friends. That’s more the summers in Nashville, I love being with family and friends and honestly just taking time away from working and the pace of the industry here.

You work within a collective, tell us about that?
I work on most of my projects with my best friends, we all truly support one another and it shows in the work. I think we are all trying to lend a helping hand whenever we can, and that sort of thing doesn’t come around too often in life, so I stay pretty close to those friends.

How about your process of creating your music?
Lately, I have been trying to arrive at a place where I am vocally most expressive with what I can do with my voice. Anyone can sing or make a song, we all have a different set of tools at our disposal to create and I am trying to find the purest and most potent version of what that sounds like for me.

Which artists did you listen to most growing up? Who influenced you the most?
I listened to all different stuff, gospel music and 90s rock were my early childhood, and as I got older I fell in love with artists like Kanye and Childish Gambino, they really taught me artistry. I still listen to everything.

Who are your favorite artists currently? How do you listen to music most, which platforms or services?
Radiohead has been my favorite as of late. Thom Yorke really has inspired me as a vocalist and songwriter, and their production was ahead of its time. They were warning us 20 years in advance of what we are experiencing today. Love them so much. Kid A is probably my favorite album right now.

Tell us about the process of making All The Ways Are Together and what you hope listeners will experience from it? What is your favorite song from it?
All The Ways We Are Together was written a couple years ago on tour for the first time and I was also falling in love with my best friend. I was feeling hopeful, empowered, and connected to those around me. I hope people find joy in the project.

It’s so great you are planting trees for every 10 streams of your music on Spotify, how did you decide to do that?
Our environment needs help, and I wanted to do something, anything, to contribute positively to rehabilitating our planet.

Earlier this year you released “Easier Said Than Done” – it has a beautiful supportive message, much needed during the times we have been living through, but you wrote it before the pandemic – what was the inspiration and your process?
For that song, it was mainly my own mental health struggles and the way my friends have been there for me. I have always been an optimist and a generally happy person but I have the highest highs and lowest lows, and that song was one of the first of me coming to terms with the lows.

You’ve encouraged fans to seek comfort of loved ones when times get tough, how else do you get through difficult times?
Therapy, exercise, present mindfulness, and gratitude. Not sure what it looks like all the time but spirituality and a relationship with God or the divine has helped, too.

What is the best advice you have been given? What is the best advice you have for others?
That’s a tough one, hard to recall. It seems like we are all sponges and end up gathering and living into the positive advice we have been given. I have several mentors and I would encourage people to seek out relationships with folks older, more experienced, younger, more naive, just have conversations with people outside of your sphere of experience.

Who has influenced your music the most and supported you the most in this journey?
My friends Darrien, Adam, Clark, Bobby, Savanna, Matt, and anyone who’s given me a chance on a tour.

Your music has been referred to as genreless, what do you think of that? How would you define your music?
I think it’s great, I love to listen to and make all sorts of different sounds and emotions, Artists shouldn’t have genres but rather reflect a certain message, emotion or “vibe” for lack of a better word for whatever they feel they want to express.

In the past you toured with Clairo, Omar Apollo, and Still Woozy, what were your biggest lessons on those tours? When will you be out touring again?
All of those folks have been so sweet and supportive. I definitely have learned how to take care of myself better in the industry and on tour and I am going to be playing my first headline dates this fall!

So many people are struggling since the pandemic and music can really help people in times like these, what have you learned during these strange times that surprised you?
So many of the institutions I grew up in are frauds, inauthentic or not what I thought they were. I have been trying to find peace in this new discovery and find my footing on love, relationships, family and friends. Conversations. I also have come face to face with my own mental health struggles and have been actively learning to love myself and take actions everyday to hopefully find light from those challenges.

What are you watching or reading right now?
Reading David Byrne’s books How Music Works and Bicycle Diaries, I love his writing so much. He is so smart and funny and clever, such an inspiration. Watching Rick and Morty for the first time and let me tell ya, I am late to the game but it has been a blast.

How about fashion? Do you have any favorite designers or shops you like? Who, if anyone would you like to collaborate?
I love Kiko, Balenciaga, Maison Margiela and all that but honestly these days I have been really overwhelmed by fashion and the need we all have to put on this façade, I am guilty of it, and I am learning to find my identity in the intangible qualities of my expression, how I love people, my spiritual journey, and just trying to be less attached to all that shit. I love clothes and want to wear them instead of them wear me.

Is there another modality you have?
I love conversations and listening. I am ADD and tend to sometimes jump around but I truly love to just sit and absorb. I also like making videos, although that shit is brutal… always a challenge, blood sweat and tears every time.

What can we expect from you next?
New music that steps into new territory for Dreamer Boy. ATWWAT is almost 2 years old for my writing and so the new music will be a more updated expression of where I am today. Thanks for taking the time to have a chat with me, love!

Erica Cornwall

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