19 Feb 2024


Music and fashion are inseparable when we look back on the past

Conan Gray stands out as a Generation Z icon. His voice captivates the world with his songs which depict life-size-reality while facing his own delicate emotions. His eyes are calm and cool, without a hint of trying to make himself seem bigger than he actually is.

Conan Gray look.2

If you want to know about Conan’s past, you should take a look at his YouTube channel. A no-frills, ubiquitous boy shows his pure, fun-loving personality as he introduces his everyday life, favorite fashions and music. His friends appear time to time, and they are also very natural and stand up with their lovely personalities.

“I’ve always been the kind of person who the happier I appear, the sadder I am. I think that when I’m going through bitterness, I’m like ‘yeah everything’s great!’ So I don’t know, my childhood was really interesting.” Conan recalls.

Conan says his childhood was anything but easy, as his parents divorced and he had to move from one place to another several times.

“I grew up in a small town and so I was just bored and lonely.” He says that is why he started posting videos on YouTube. “It was like a video game, you know. It’s just kind of what I did because everyone was doing it. I think that there’s a beautiful thing with the internet now where you can have some really niche interest but then find thousands of other people who also love that thing.”

If you look at the YouTube channel Conan started as a youth, you will find fresh footages from that time, showing his favorite fashion items he had just acquired, baking cookies with friends, and other such casual scenes from his past time daily life. In the YouTube channel, you can also hear his singing voice from those days. The voice you hear is extremely natural, unpretentious, and very honest. His voice, which made him a star, was still quite innocent, but it is clear that even then he possessed an outstanding ability to express himself.

“I learned piano, first, then I started playing guitar. I had one of those electronic keyboards and ukulele when I grew up. I like playing piano, but I didn’t start songwriting till I started playing a guitar. I write most everything on guitar. I just think it’s an easier instrument.” Conan says. “I think you get influenced just by whatever surrounds you as a kid, but I didn’t come from a musical family and so I had to figure out what I liked on my own.”

Conan Gray look.2

Did country music have any influence on Conan, who spent his youth in Texas?

“I think the thing about country music when you boil it down, it’s just really great storytelling music. I think any music lover can appreciate it and country music is truly like the best form of storytelling music in America.” Conan explains.

Conan said that he can’t lie in music, but does he have any hesitation in sharing the true feelings in his own songs?

“It takes courage, but I don’t really think you have much of a choice. All of the best songs are just about real life things. I just think you just have to tell your story the way you want to tell it. And so I just I think you have to be truthful, in my opinion. Other people treat it differently. That’s just how I feel.”

Conan Gray look.2

Conan says that he had always been rather shy, and spent much time quietly observing others. In his song “People Watching,” he weaves delicate words about his own inadequacies into a song. However, the way he looks at people is so vivid and precise.

“I think people are really weird. The more normal they seem, the more weird they are.” Conan says. “So I really love watching people, but I ‘m really trying lately to not be the kind of person who just watches life pass by. Like I really want to be a part of life. And I think that a lot of the music I’ve been writing lately has been me going out of my way in order to actually experience life and actually fall in love and actually try. Because if you don’t try, you might just watch your entire life pass you by.”

Conan Gray look.2

What does fashion mean to Conan? It is clear that fashion has always been important to him.

“I think I’m a very shy person. And to me the fashion is a way of creating a version of myself that can do all the things that I would never otherwise, you know. I think that’s the beauty of fashion. I love that you can just look in the mirror and actually look different. But in every day I’m just comfortable in jeans and a T-shirt, because I mean on normal days I don’t have to perform on a stage, like Coachella. Fashion is like an armor.”

For the second look, Conan chose a casual, active, yet dressy style. A comfortable knit cardigan over basic shorts, middle-socks with an eye-catching bold tiger motif, and classic loafers accentuate the look.

Depending on situations, Conan overcame difficulties in his daily life by wearing comfortable items. There are YouTube videos of Conan as a teenager introducing the treasures he acquired at thrift stores.

Direction : Shinsuke Nozaka
Photo, Movie : Yoshiaki Sekine (SIGNO)
Stylist : Katie Qian, Emi Ito (ADDICT_CASE)
Hair : Miho Emori
Make : Marino Asahi (Y’s C)
Text : Mario Tauchi


Conan Gray is an American singer-songwriter, who was born December 5, 1998 between an Irish father and a Japanese mother. His studio album Kid Krow (2020) debuted at number five on the U.S. Billboard 200, making it the biggest U.S. artist debut of the year. He has released second album Superache (2022) and become a brand ambassador for Onitsuka Tiger in 2024.