Premiere: Grace May Debuts with Raw, Stirring Silent Anthem “Quiet”

Quiet - Grace May cover art
Grace May sends shivers down the spine in her breathtaking “Quiet,” a soothing neo-soul anthem of silent strength and solitude’s solace.
Stream: “Quiet” – Grace May

I hope people will come to know that struggling in silence because you don’t want to be a burden, is valid. And asking for help is too.

What is your secret; what is your burden? We all hold back from time to time. Some, if not many, of us are holding on tight to deep wounds, shielding our scars from the world whether out of strength, pride, shame, fear, doubt… do we need a reason? Can we not brood in silence, without the world dismissing our choice? Is it not an option to speak, or hold our tongue? Why then, is our fragility made ever more unstable by the pressure to speak up and bare ourselves to the world?

Grace May sends shivers down the spine in her breathtaking “Quiet,” a soothing neo-soul anthem of silent strength and solitude’s solace.

Quiet - Grace May cover art

Quiet – Grace May

Broken, what does it mean?
To be broken, do you need to be
In a million pieces for the world to see
Or is it a quiet thing?
Cry for help how do I do that
Without playing the victim or exposing myself
Ok so I’m hurting
But I don’t want to be a burden

Atwood Magazine is proud to be premiering Grace May’s debut single “Quiet,” independently released on March 29, 2019. Born and raised in Toronto, Canada and now based in Brooklyn, 22-year-old Grace May is newly graduated and already putting her Berklee College of Music degree to use through a distinctive R&B-influenced neo-soul artistry. Citing such influences as Lianne La Havas, Emily King and H.E.R., May is raw, intimate, and deeply vulnerable on her first “official” post-grad offering.

For May, “‘Quiet’ narrates the feeling of loneliness.” She wrote the lyrically-driven song after listening to listening to Joni Mitchell’s “Both Sides Now” and finding inspiration in an old quote from the artist: “If you listen to the music and you see me, you’re not getting anything out of it. If you listen to that music and you see yourself… now you’re getting something out of it.

May dwells in a dichotomy of pain and comfort as she embraces isolation’s masking veil. “Cry for help – how do I do that?” she asks in the second verse, “Without playing the victim or exposing myself? Ok so I’m hurting, but I don’t want to be a burden.” May’s narrative is one of inner conflict; addressing herself, she runs through the pros and cons of staying silent or reaching out for help. She cries out in the chorus in a stirring falsetto:

Can this be a quiet thing?
Can this be a quiet thing?
I know that I’m hurting
But I can do it quietly
Grace May © Maggie Fraser

Grace May © Maggie Fraser

“‘Quiet’ is about acknowledging that it still counts if your struggle is silent,” May tells Atwood Magazine. “That your pain, or what you’re going through doesn’t have to be ‘obvious’ for it to be real. “Quiet” is the anthem for the phrase ‘it’s OK not to be OK’ and if you’re in that place, it’s also okay to ask for help. This song means a lot to me because I was at my lowest when I wrote it. So it’s a very freeing, and beautiful feeling to know something good came out of that dark time. I hope by releasing “Quiet” it might speak to someone who’s going, or has gone, through something similar. Music gave me answers that no one could, and I’m just hopeful that this release does the same for someone who might be looking for answers too.”

It’s a very freeing, and beautiful feeling to know something good came out of that dark time.

We all live with demons of some sort; the push-and-pull to involve others in your pain only adds to the torment, but out of darkness Grace May has created beauty.

“I’m debuting this song because it’s me in my rawest form,” she explains. “My voice and a true story. Since it’s my first official release, I wanted to be as authentic as possible with my audience. I’m a feen for layers of background vocals and a full band, but I didn’t want to glamorize what I’d gone through, and what someone else might be going through. By debuting this, I hope people will come to know that struggling in silence because you don’t want to be a burden, is valid. And asking for help is too.”

You don’t have to live alone with your pain, but if you choose do, it’s okay. Don’t wear yourself down, and don’t beat yourself up. It might not always be for the best, but it’s still okay.

For a song of silence, ”Quiet” hits hard. Stream Grace May’s roaring debut single exclusively on Atwood Magazine!

Stream: “Quiet” – Grace May

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:: stream/purchase Quiet here ::

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Quiet - Grace May cover art

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📸 © Maggie Fraser
art 📸 © Victoria Gruenert
art graphic design © Elizabeth Zulauf

Mitch Mosk

Mitch is the Editor-in-Chief of Atwood Magazine and a 2014 graduate from Tufts University, where he pursued his passions of music and psychology. He currently works at Universal Music Group in New York City. In his off hours, Mitch may be found songwriting, wandering about one of New York's many neighborhoods, or writing an article on your next favorite artist for Atwood. Mitch's words of wisdom to fellow musicians and music lovers are thus: Keep your eyes open and never stop exploring. No matter where you go, what you do or who you are with, you can always learn something new and inspire something amazing. Say hi here: mitch[at]atwoodmagazine[dot]com