Peyton has a big day on Friday.
The Missouri City-born, Houston-based vocalist has a new EP, “Reach Out,” dropping on Friday. And, later that evening, she will be doing a live set at the Satellite Bar. So, does she have anything planned for the big show? “I don’t know how I’m gonna set up my show yet,” says Peyton, 22, over the phone. “It’s obviously something I need to think about, but I haven’t been thinking about it.”
Longtime Third Ward resident Peyton (full name: Peyton Booker) appears to be taking everything in stride, which isn’t surprising considering she’s been singing ever since she was a little one, growing up in a house full of music enthusiasts. “My dad’s side of the family — like, most of them are musicians,” she says. “And my mom’s side of the family, they’re not musicians, but they’re music lovers. So, I was always surrounded by music and exposed to a lot of different music.”
Music would obviously become a consistent part of her life. When she went to Parker Elementary, a school where her late grandmother Theola Booker (a Grammy-nominated, local gospel legend who wrote for Reverend James Cleveland and counted Beyoncé among her pupils) taught piano, she started playing the violin and joined the choir. She would eventually sing at church and perform with different ensembles around Houston, including Theatre Under the Stars. “I just, like, did anything I could that was related with the arts,” she says. “I just thought that it was so much magic in it, and I knew how to do it well.”
A few years ago, Peyton started recording professionally, dropping albums and singles full of progressive, dreamy soul and collaborating with artists like Steve Lacy, guitarist and producer for The Internet (whom she’s opened for). “Even though I was trained classically, I like so many other sounds,” she says. “And I just wanted to make my own music and put it out there and combine a lot of the things that I like in music.”
Her 2016 single “Sweet Honey” (which was featured on the last season of the HBO show “Insecure”) caught the ear of a lot of people — including DJ/producer/Stones Throw Records founder Peanut Butter Wolf. “He posted about it on Twitter and I was really shocked that he came across it,” she says. “And, then, I realized that he had been following me on social media. So, I reached out to him and I would send him stuff — like, whenever I made anything — and we just kept in touch. And, then, he asked me to be a part of the label last year.”
Of course, she’s jazzed to be on Stones Throw, the same, West Coast label that has released classic albums from hip-hop icons Madlib and J Dilla, as well as the debut work of soul vocalists Mayer Hawthorne and Aloe Blacc.
Jerry Paper, Peyton
When: 9 p.m. Friday
Where: Satellite Bar, 6922 Harrisburg Blvd.
Details: $12; 713-425-6669; satellitehtx.com
“It’s very awesome to be on a label like this because I grew up listening to a lot of these artists and always respected a lot of these artists,” she says. “And to be on, what I consider, a legendary label is pretty mind-blowing… I’ve always been very passionate about music and I’ve put in a lot of work throughout my years, so to get recognition and to sign with a label like this is really incredible. It really is.”
Peyton is looking forward to releasing and performing her new music, which she believes comes from a good place — much like her. “The whole project is about hopefulness and being hopeful and trying to connect with the world — with what I have to offer and messages I have — and hopefully connecting with everyone.”
Craig Lindsey is a Houston-based writer.