The Gregorio is a Hungarian alternative / electronic artist based in Brisbane and working with Vermilion Records (QUT). In 2019 he graduated QUT’s Bachelor of Music, minoring in creative performance and music/sound production. Inspired by various genres such as pop, progressive metal/math rock, jazz and many more, his solo work aims to carefully tread the line between “pop” and “experimental” music – this results in music that manages to not only be unique and refreshing, but also catchy and familiar. After over a year and a half of hard work, his debut EP ‘Binary’ was finally released on all major music streaming platforms on November 9, 2019.
As a practising composer and songwriter and a recent QUT graduate, we asked The Gregorio five questions about his artistic process for the 2020 Uni Writers’ Festival.
FIVE QUESTIONS WITH THE GREGORIO
What is your songwriting process like? Do you have a specific process to go through or is it more spontaneous?
Usually it starts when I get a vocal/melodic hook stuck in my head as I’m going about my day, which I quickly sing into my phone microphone before I forget. I would work out a chord progression and structure around that on my piano, then I start producing/arranging in Ableton Live. As for any more specifics, I tend to change it up and try new approaches to make myself uncomfortable. This way, the music making is done deliberately instead of being on auto-pilot. There are countless creative options available, and this is how I try to make myself explore them.
Are there any artists who have particularly influenced your songwriting style? In what ways?
Andrew Huang is a massive inspiration to me. He is a versatile musician and producer, as well as a very entertaining YouTuber! I’ve learned a lot about songwriting and music production by watching his videos, and I’ve definitely improved at my craft because of it. His willingness to try weird things and have fun with the music he’s making is something I admire a lot.
Do you find you have any specific topics or situations that keep inspiring songs?
While the topics vary, I have a tendency to tell stories that attempt to evoke a certain emotional response in the listener, or draw attention to a social cause I care about. My first EP “Binary” had the theme of contrast and juxtaposition, while my next album (currently in progress) will focus on fantasy vs reality. How I implement the theme is different between songs though.
What do you find harder to write – lyrics or music?
For me, good lyrics are harder to write than the melody, chord progression and structure for a song; I often find myself in writing situations where I need to meet a very specific number of syllables or use particular vowel sounds to make the words actually sound good while telling the story I want to tell at the same time. However, I think producing/arranging the song is a lot harder. It’s a lot of fun though and I enjoy having full control over my music, so it’s totally worth it.
Pick a song that you wish you had written and tell us why you love it!
“Yours” by Andrew Huang is an absolute bop! It has the perfect blend between ambience, retro vibes and catchiness. The production quality is top-notch, and there’s some seriously creative arrangement tricks in it…it even features some seamless time signature changes which is extremely tricky to do in pop music!