Tre G Wants To See More Representation Of Black Queer Musicians In St. Louis
Singer-songwriter Tre'von Griffith, better known as Tre G, reclaimed his artistry and identity as a musician earlier this year with his album “As I Am.” For a long time, Tre G said he created music he thought others wanted to hear. But his latest album was about creating his own lane and sound as a Black queer artist in St. Louis.
Tre G’s earliest introduction to music was the church. He would attend choir rehearsals with his mother and quickly became accustomed to the repertoire.
“And I really just think from that moment I was like, ‘Whoa.’ The music kind of like just took over me. I kind of knew at that moment that that was what I wanted to do — and that was probably the age of 4,” Tre G said ahead of Monday’s St. Louis on the Air.
His early talent inspired his education: He attended Central Visual and Performing Arts High School in St. Louis and later earned a master’s degree at Berklee College of Music’s campus in Valencia, Spain.
It also led him to theater. He studied under Ron Himes, founder and producing director of the Black Rep, and performed in productions including “Sarafina,” “A Raisin in the Sun,” “Macbeth” and “Guys and Dolls.”
Lately, Tre G said he’s trying to navigate “the new normal” as a performer and find his place in an ongoing movement toward racial equity. Recently, he organized WerQfest to do just that. The digital festival was geared toward celebrating Black queer art and community.
“June was an interesting month because not only was it Pride Month, and I was dealing with those emotions and what it meant to fight for that equality, also we saw the uprising in the social justice movement. So I was like, ‘Wow, what a time that during a pandemic, both of my identities kind of intersect and they're both on uprise,’” Tre G said.
“So I thought, ‘Why not make our community present in people's faces?’ And also, since we didn't get a chance to do anything for Pride, I definitely saw a void that needed to be filled.”
Tre G joined guest host Jeremy D. Goodwin on Monday’s program to talk about his musical journey and where he hopes to take WerQfest. For those who missed the show last month, it will re-air at 7 p.m. Friday.
Listen to the full conversation:
“St. Louis on the Air” brings you the stories of St. Louis and the people who live, work and create in our region. The show is hosted by Sarah Fenske and produced by Alex Heuer, Emily Woodbury, Evie Hemphill and Lara Hamdan. The audio engineer is Aaron Doerr.
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