Meet the Band: Salti Ray is the name of a four person, South Carolina based group that has been getting up to a lot of new and exciting things.
The band has three already released singles, and their debut EP,The Right Thing, comes out September 25. I had the chance to hop on the phone with the group’s lead singer, Mary Norris, to talk music and discuss their upcoming EP.
Creative Process: Salti Ray likes to stay on their toes when it comes to songwriting, refraining from sticking to any one method in particular. Their songs are a culmination of all their different inputs, ideas and influences.
Norris described her songwriting process as a time at which she is “at the mercy of” her own inspiration. If an idea comes to mind, Norris has to stop whatever she’s doing and run with the concept. If not, the moment will pass.
COVID-19 Update: During these unprecedented times, the group has been trying to make the most out of their situation. “Live performance is our thing. That’s where we typically focus most of our energy, because we love connecting with other people. That’s what it’s all about for us,” shared Norris. On the bright side, however, the singer emphasized that not playing shows has helped them focus their energy in, pushing their EP in ways they wouldn’t have been able to had they been more busy performing.
Future Plans: According to Norris, while the group has discussed relocating to a different city, they don’t have any concrete plans at the moment. The group is fond of the music scene in Spartanburg, South Carolina, and they’re not ready to leave just yet.
Musical Influences: Part of what makes Salti Ray so interesting is their unique combination of musical backgrounds. While Taylor and Norris share some musical influences, such as Pearl Jam, the band’s bassist, Jacob Lightsey, is a whole other story. Lightsey studied at Berklee College of Music and is known as the group’s jazz man. Last but not least, Houston Garrett, the band’s drummer, is a Grateful Dead and Willie Nelson type of guy. Common musical influences for the group as a whole include Lake Street Dive and Alabama Shakes.
EP Release: The group is very excited about their upcoming EP, The Right Thing. Norris described the project as being a well rounded representation of the group’s different musical styles and capabilities.
Norris’ parting words to describe the EP were as follows: “This is us! This is our musical introduction.”
And with that, we have until September 25 to look forward to what Salti Ray has in store for us.