How PonyBoy Made His Signature Sound by Combining Past Nostalgia with Modern Tunes
All artists, irrespective of their art form or genre, are influenced by the greats that preceded them, but what separates a good artist from a great artist is the ability to take that influence and mix it in a melting pot with a modern blend to create something new and exciting. Kevin Justin Graves, aka Ponyboy, subscribes to this way of doing things and is busy shaking things up in the music industry by combing the nostalgic sounds of musical giants from the past with a modern flavor that’s strictly his own.
“My tastes have always veered towards the eclectic,” explained PonyBoy. “From a young age, I’ve been heavily influenced by jazz and knew nearly all the standards by heart. Yet, it was my dad’s love for classic rock that turned me into the artist I am today. As a child, I remember singing along to The Beatles and feeling a sense of euphoria that has stayed with me until this day. It’s that elusive feeling of transcendence I strive to capture in my music. However, to engage new generations and to keep it fresh, you have to take the music you love and put your own unique spin on it. It’s what Amy Winehouse did with jazz and The Rolling Stones did with rhythm and blues. In my small way, it’s also what I’m trying to do every time I pick up a guitar or sing a song.”
Even the most cursory listen to Ponyboy’s music is enough to convince you that he’s a man who wears his influences on his sleeve but also someone striving to create something new. It’s a passion that has dictated the course of PonyBoy’s life to date.
PonyBoy explained, “A lot of people will know me from my recurring role as Frederick Cranes’ nephew in the T.V. show Cheers, but even though my career began as an actor, music has always been my first love. When I write and when I perform, I see myself honoring what came before but also creating something new that will hopefully take its place in a vibrant legacy. My album “Goodboys” is coming out this year, and I’m really excited about it. It’s an album that could only have been made in the times we live, but it is also an album that wouldn’t be possible without those who inspired it. Hopefully, people will listen to it and not only dig the tunes but also be inspired to go further and discover those artists who influenced these tunes.”