Sometimes you're a born storyteller. Sometimes it takes most of your life to realize you're a natural.
Both are true for Oklahoma singer-songwriter Kalyn Fay. The Cherokee songstress grew up neck-deep in the Bible Belt, but found her unique voice after venturing beyond worship music. While finishing her undergrad degree in 2012, she began writing her own music and by 2013, she was performing and touring.
Fay was working on her master’s degree while writing and recording for her debut album throughout 2014-2016. An album said to be “capable of inducing tears with it’s harsh truths,” Bible Belt was released on June 10, 2016 through Horton Records.
Questions of faith and tumultuous love, deeply-rooted in Oklahoma, were the raw building blocks Fay used to develop her intimate, breathtaking songs. Somewhere between the vulnerability of Sufjan Stevens and the brash, beautiful sounds of Wye Oak lives this Okie starlet and a poetic soul wise beyond her years. She's more than the Tulsa Sound. She's how Tulsa sounds.
The body of work I pursue is fueled by graphic design, realized through various facets of printmaking, and finished with textile and embroidery. Since I am drawn to the traditional textiles and crafts, stories, language and history of my Cherokee heritage, my aspiration is to allow my cultural background, along with the convoluted nature of my white, Christian upbringing, to influence my work, simultaneously. This includes the use of simple illustrations, hand-drawn typography and syllabary, patterns, photos and classic design standards.
The emphasis of my work is on remembrance of both familial and cultural natures. It is meant to create a feeling of nostalgia, of memories, but conversely, an acute awareness of the present through use of very tactile means. Through my work, I hope to create a better understanding of the way in which present-day Native American peoples exist, constantly carrying the weight of their history within a white-washed society.