Nick Peay is a Louisville, KY based singer/songwriter, with over 15 years of songwriting experience.. Over the years, he has been honing his craft of songwriting through practice, schooling and constantly striving for improvement. His new EP, Life & Love & Us is musically different and stronger than other recent projects for two reasons. He used his new-found love of the ukulele to write and record the EP, which features mostly just ukulele, vocals and string arrangements; and these sparse recordings highlight the strength in Peay's songwriting as he approaches more positive material, from falling in love to thankfulness for the wonders of the world.
Since picking up the ukulele in late 2010, Peay has not only taught himself how to play it, but used it strictly as his main instrument in writing new material. Returning to simpler arrangements, after having written for and played in his rock band OK Zombie, brought sharp focus to the songs and songwriting. Remembering from his school days that great songs were great even with only one instrument and vocals, Peay decided that the new material wouldn't require heavy production but would instead focus on lyrics, melody and the song itself.
“The ukulele is just a happy little instrument,” says Peay. “You can't help but be happy when you hear it or see someone playing it.” This is true and may have had some influence in the positive direction of Peay's songs. From the musically playful opening track, “Wild Dreams,” about impromptu vacations to the poignant and hauntingly beautiful, “The Great Green Room” in which Peay expresses his thankfulness for the beauty in the world and was inspired by the childrens book “Goodnight Moon,” Peay's subject matter is universal enough for all, yet spoken so uniquely and elegantly.
“The Great Green Room” also inspired Peay to rethink aspects of his music's physical impact. “Here I am talking about how thankful I am for the earth and I realize that my CDs are going to use up some of our natural resources. So, I decided to look for other solutions. The majority of the packaging I settled on and used is 100% recycled material.”
Peay's activism dates back to his college days, where he studied songwriting, music theory, music production and music business. He has worked with under-privileged children, participated in peace rally's, performed benefit concerts and is currently working with animal rescues and fostering animals. Since returning from Nashville in 2004, Peay has played locally with many different musicians. He played with local greats Peter Searcy and Warren Ray and from them, developed a professionalism not typically seen in younger musicians. Peay takes his craft very seriously, but he
doesn't take himself seriously.
Peay's sense of humor on and off stage contribute to his likeability. It's not uncommon for him to tell jokes on stage or play silly songs that he's written. Though even in jest, his humorous songs are still good enough to be seriously appreciated. An additional song on Life & Love & Us is titled “A Day In The Life (Of My Dog)” about how every day for his dog, “whatever the weather, it's gonna be the best day ever!”
“I try to write music that people can sing along to,” says Peay, “and that makes them feel good. Music is supposed to make you feel good.” Armed with a ukulele and a positive message, Peay and his new EP, Life & Love & Us, delivers feel-good music you can sign along to.