To Top

Life & Work with Payti Harrison

Today we’d like to introduce you to Payti Harrison.

Hi Payti, we’re thrilled to have a chance to learn your story today. So, before we get into specifics, maybe you can briefly walk us through how you got to where you are today?
My story starts as a tough tomboy who grew up in a neighborhood full of boys. From the beginning, I’ve always been hardest on myself to try to achieve different forms of success. This has been through school, sports, and recently music. My passion for music began when the covid pandemic first occurred. I remember sitting at home bored because I had made myself take a break from social media. I worked up the nerve to buy an acoustic guitar and downloaded an app to teach myself how to play it. After learning the basics, I became fascinated with music theory (I had no idea there was such a thing) and taught myself the foundations of it by watching numerous YouTube videos and taking lessons. From there, I decided to start taking online and in-person singing lessons. My parents and brother have always wanted me to sing, but I honestly didn’t have time when playing sports and didn’t have a calling for it yet. I even remember my brother using an old video recorder to tape me singing when we were little. He’s always been my number one fan and supporter. I kept up the lessons and really liked how I could hear the improvement in my voice after practicing. It was as if I had found a new sport to pursue after I had lost that edge of not playing any for several years.

All of this was fun, but it wasn’t until I picked up a pen to start songwriting that my passion set in. I tell people the reason why I sing is because I am a songwriter first. I became addicted to writing songs literally all day every day. It has been the most freeing I have ever felt, and it is something I aim to not let go of. These past summers, I have spent hours in my parents’ closet recording demos for songs I’ve written. After writing songs I thought were worthy, I started reaching out to different people in the music industry. I know I have emailed hundreds of people. Looking back on it, being so naïve actually helped me. For some reason, I just assumed these big-time industry people were going to get back with me. In the music industry, for every 100 “no’s,” there may be one “yes.” It’s honestly the passion that has to keep you going. I’ve always had an inkling to pursue something creative, and I even did some modeling in high school and have recently kinda gotten back into it. I believe being a singer and songwriter hits the nail on the head for fulfilling my creative interests.

I’m sure you wouldn’t say it’s been obstacle free, but so far would you say the journey have been a fairly smooth road?
I’d say it has been a pretty smooth road so far. The entertainment industry (music, acting, modeling, etc.) is beginning to accept more and more multifaceted people who come from different backgrounds. Look at Megan Thee Stallion at the top of the charts with a health administration degree. This makes me like her even more because she is relatable. Society really is pushing to have a more all-inclusive approach. I think it’s great how modeling agencies are representing models of all different sizes too. It makes me look back and think: Why haven’t we been supporting this inclusion since the beginning? Another important lesson I had to learn the hard way is that the creative industries are very much hurry up and wait industries. All in all, although I haven’t had the smoothest road, it definitely has not been the roughest. I am grateful for the people who have helped me out, and I know I’m not going anywhere. I have a calling to put my songs in the world, and I know if I didn’t, I would regret it for the rest of my life.

Thanks – so what else should our readers know about your work and what you’re currently focused on?
I love this question! I just released my first single I am proud of, and this is just a stepping stone. I’m excited about what the future holds. I have so many ideas I want to pursue. Another thing I am proud of is being a part of a team that received local funding to support a high school STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) innovation course. This course teaches innovation, entrepreneurship skills, and basic business knowledge to high school students in rural areas. From this, there is a direct pipeline that can lead to an already established entrepreneurship summer program. Having the opportunity to help others is fulfilling. In the end, I just want to be able to inspire people to be their best. The greatest things in life are on the other side of fear and failure. Why not go after your biggest dream that scares you? If you fail (even including myself failing at music), at least you tried. I don’t want to be an old person sitting in my rocking chair one day regretting what I didn’t try. I think that as you get older, the world tries to back you into a corner where you only see things in a one-dimensional, black and white type of way, but being multidimensional and thinking in color should be embraced. I’ve learned that it’s okay to be more than one thing…to be the jack of all trades. We are currently living in a time where this is supported now more than ever.

Alright so before we go can you talk to us a bit about how people can work with you, collaborate with you or support you?
People can support me by liking, following, and streaming my song on Spotify and other music platforms. The song is called “Meant To Be” by PAYTI. This is really important to support independent artists like me. Also, you can follow me on my Instagram @paytiharrison. I’m looking for people to collaborate with, so feel free to contact me if you’re involved in the music industry in any way or if you’re a photographer. Thank you again, Voyage LA!

Contact Info:

Image Credits
The last picture in the blue nylon jacket was taken by Leighlee Her Instagram name is *All other images were taken by my Mom

Suggest a Story: VoyageLA is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

More in local stories