Interview by: Orchee Sorker | March 9, 2023 | Photos by: Robbie Wheeler and Brenton Giesey
Thomas Day chats with Hazze Media on his journey in music, being a part of America's Got Talent, and navigating post relationship which led to his latest single "Vicious". He touches on the vision for the music video, advantages of using social media to share your music, and also advice for aspiring songwriters.
How would you introduce yourself in one sentence?
Hi, my name is Thomas Day and I'm an artist from Nashville, Tennessee that writes songs about what I go through every single day.
How did you get started in music and who is your biggest inspiration?
I started in music at a really young age, probably around three years old. I started playing piano when I was about four years old. I self-taught myself till now. Growing up, my parents had a huge influence on me too. They were always playing music around the house. My parents are musically talented, and it was always around me. It was just the thing I loved the most. A big inspiration for me from an early age is the Beatles. They were huge for me.
I know that football was a big part of your life. How did you balance both aspects growing up?
Football was really fun. I played a lot of sports growing up. It was always a really crazy experience because after soccer or hockey practice, I would go home and play piano. Then, I'd have school too. Naturally as a human being, I always want to have things to do. So honestly, even at a young age, I was really content doing those things…just the things I love most.
You were talented in a lot of different areas. What made you make the decision to pursue just music full-time? What was one thing that kind of helped choose to stick to music full-time?
I would say that I had made that decision already. It could seem like it was hard for me, but it really wasn't. At the end of the day, I love sports and football especially. I was getting recruited for that too. At the end of the day, I was just doing what I loved most. Music is what I've always been more naturally inclined to. I feel like I just loved sports in general…but music I always knew, if that was a possibility, then I would end up doing it.
What led you to your journey on America's Got Talent and do you think your life would've been different if you didn't have that experience?
I remember getting reached out to cause I was posting videos of me singing originals and covers on Instagram and TikTok. I got reached out to by somebody and you should audition for this show. I didn't really want to at the time. I actually was more focused on football, and my mom actually forced me to go to the audition. Originally, I didn't think I would get in to be honest. I went to the audition and actually sang “Break My Heart Again” by Finneas and “All of Me” by John Legend. Later on I got a call that I was gonna be on it. I don't think things would be that much different. That show boosted a good amount of people to support me and stuff. I feel like that also just pushed me. I loved performing that show and in front of people. It was very like a crazy experience. It's crazy that it was like two years ago now. No, I think nothing would've changed though. I would've kept going with music.
Like you said, you share a lot of your music on social media, specifically TikTok. What are your thoughts on TikTok and the music industry? How do you maintain the balance of creating music and creating content to post? Just like your wellbeing and work?
I actually think it's crazy because the music industry has changed in the past five years. The fact that I started posting videos of me singing in my room, and now I'm signed to a major label is the craziest thing. I guarantee you if I told an artist that 10 years ago, they'd be so confused. I think that TikTok is really cool. It's really good, but you have to have fun with it. I still don't view it as work. I don't want it to become a task, and it's not a task at all. I literally love making videos. I also love seeing people react to them, especially with my original songs. It's amazing for artists right now cause I could scroll on TikTok for like 20 minutes and like 20 new artists. I mean it's like infinite.
For sure, I feel like it unlocks the door of where you're kind of located. I guess before you would have to be in some major city to connect with all these people, right?
No, a hundred percent. That's a good point. You can connect to so many different parts of the world. It's completely global.
Moving on to your latest release “Vicious”. What was your creative process when writing this song?
Funny story. I was actually talking to my ex the night I started writing “Vicious”. I was in my room, and for some reason I made the horrible decision to talk to my ex-girlfriend who I was still secretly a little bit in love with at the time…but we hadn't talked in forever. Before I knew it, we had been talking for four hours. She was like, “oh, I love you and I miss you.” Then by the end she told me that she was talking to somebody. That threw me off. So I quickly hung up and started writing like the beginning of “Vicious”. It was the first verse, and then later on I finished it with my good buddy Steve. It was just a really good session. I just loved it so much. It came naturally. It's probably not my favorite song.
I saw the music video, it was really good. I love the lighting and the editing was really good. Honestly like the part, the couch kinda breaks and the beat drops or whatever.
Yeah, it's like the room is breaking down.
What was your vision for the video or did you kind of have the director kind of come up with the concept?
We kind of talked about it both. My buddy Brenton directed a bunch of the creative stuff. He's done my other music videos besides one. We talked about it. I feel like I just wanted to be aggressive cause naturally the song feels very energetic. We talked about the walls falling down. I'm in a perfect room and then it starts breaking and then by the end of it I'm like breaking stuff. I've always wanted to do one of those breaking rooms. It was a fun experience.
What advice do you give to new songwriters? How would you recommend them getting their art heard?
With the songwriting process, I feel like my biggest thing for me is you just have to trust yourself with what you're doing. When I'm writing alone, I feel like as humans, as individuals, we are like the biggest critics. When I'm sitting there I'm like, “Is this good?” Then, sometimes I'll get uninspired. I'll just stop writing. Then, I'll go back to things that I have one day and I'll be like, “Oh my gosh, it's so good.” With writing songs, the best you will write will always come from a personal experience. You just have to really dig deep to what you're feeling because if you're not, it's really not gonna really hit you as hard. That's what I believe. I'm obsessed with songwriting now, and it's like I get more obsessed with it every day. I’ve also gotten into photography more. I have ADHD, that's why I'm bouncing off. With releasing stuff you just post on TikTok as much as you can…honestly, other apps now are creating their platforms that have more exposure now. It's easier to get exposed to more viewers now because TikTok is such a crazy platform. A lot of other people are trying to boost it so everybody can see it. It's very helpful. Just posting and making sure that it's authentic for who you are and what you wanna say, I feel. The one thing that defines all artists from other ones, “If you don't have something to say, you have nothing to write. But if you say it differently, that's the best. If you have something to say, I guarantee you it's gonna be good.”
What is one thing you hope your listeners or your fans take away from your music?
One thing that my fans take away from my music is I want them to interpret the song for themselves in the best way. That's very healing. It depends on the song. With “Vicious”, I like it when I'm just screaming in the car and going crazy with my friends. There's a lot of ways to find the best way to heal when listening. That's all I'm trying to do with my music is to heal other people. Music can change lives. Listen when you're ready.
When can fans expect new music? Are you possibly thinking of a tour?
I don't know if I'm allowed to say anything about tours. I will say that new music is coming soon. I have a crazy song that's coming out even crazier than “Vicious”. Lots of high energy, lots of emotions. I actually am doing a show in LA on March 14th. Dates for that will be posted soon. A lot of new music is gonna be coming this year. There's stuff about tour, but I won't say anything.
Awesome, I'm so excited. Those are all the questions! If you ever do a show in Nashville, my sister and I will be there, front row!