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With his debut album, “Eighty-Eight Reasons,” singer-songwriter Grant Reiff lays out an eclectic mix of musical genres, combining Americana/country, melancholy blues ballads and classic rock-inspired melodies for a record that’s sure to leave a memorable first impression.
Inspired by a bittersweet breakup with his fiancée, Reiff's soulful title track “Eight-Eight Reasons” features the chorus line, “Even though I love you baby, I’ve got eighty-eight reasons to leave.” Why 88? Well, for Reiff, it was simple: he wanted to chase his dreams of a music career. “There are 88 keys on a standard piano,” he says. “That’s where the 88 comes from.”
Showing impressive musical diversity, Reiff's debut effort, releasing August 14th, seamlessly transitions from break-up anthems to love ballads. The album's first single, "The Distance," tells the timeless tale of a long-distance relationship.
"There is something special about the way that song came together," Reiff says. "It has a message that hope springs eternal. Long distance relationships are very tough, and that is why the song has some strain and some minor undertones. Nothing can ever be pretty and easy all the time."
As for Reiff, he's traveled his own distance to chase his musical dreams. An Indiana native, he grew up on a dairy farm and later pursued a degree in agricultural economics from Purdue University. While there, Reiff honed his vocal chops as a member of the renowned Purdue Varsity Glee Club. His glee club travels took him to the Playboy Mansion, Carnegie Hall and even to Washington D.C. for President George W. Bush's second inauguration.
In 2010, Reiff packed up his life and moved to Nashville to record his first studio album. There, he made the most of Nashville's vibrant nightlife, spending many nights honing his skills in the city's legendary music clubs.
As far as musical influences go, famous piano singer-songwriters Billy Joel and Elton John, as well as Garth Brooks and John Mayer, are among Reiff’s favorites. But he's not ready to limit himself to just one musical genre.
"I have never and will never pigeonhole myself to one style of music in my writing," he says.
With that mindset, "Eighty-Eight Reasons" is simply the first chapter in Reiff's journey to create and define his own musical legacy.