Macy Gray, in Her Own Voice

'Stealing' from Other Artists, Singer Finds Unique Sound

Listen: <b>Web Extra:</b> Macy Gray Discusses Her Unique Voice

Listen: <b>Web Extra:</b> Gray on How She Writes Songs

Listen: <b>Web Extra:</b> Gray on Fame and Her Family

'The Trouble with Being Myself' CD cover

The Trouble with Being Myself, Macy Gray's latest CD. hide caption

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Before she made it big, Macy Gray was told she couldn't sing. And when she did sing, people would laugh at her distinctive voice, she says. Gray talks with NPR's Steve Inskeep about her inspirations, relationships and music.

Gray remembers going through different phases in trying to find her voice. She was into the screech of Axel Rose, lead singer of Guns N' Roses. Then, she went through a "Nirvana phase, a New Edition phase. There's a way to steal from people but not make it obvious, and I figured that out," she says.

Gray says she tends to gravitate toward relationships with some tension in them. "I don't even really think anybody wants a completely happy relationship because they tend to get boring," she says. "You kind of go for people who kind of enhance the drama in your life..." And besides, it gives her plenty of interesting songwriting material.

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Trouble With Being Myself

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Trouble With Being Myself
Macy Gray

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