Sometimes you need to step away, go for a walk, and breathe. It may feel like it’s a race to the finish line, but it’s not. Life isn’t a competition to see who is better. Recognize that you’re not always going to have days where you are on top of your game, and that’s okay.
As a part of our series about rising music stars, I had the distinct pleasure of interviewing TROY.
Shaped by his entertainment background and drawing inspiration from top artists like Ed Sheeran and Harry Styles, as well as classic hitmakers like Elton John and Queen, TROY’s sound is a perfect balance of current pop production with edgy rock elements.
Born in New Jersey, TROY (also known as actor Troy Doherty) got his start in New York City musical theatre at age 12, acting and singing in the musicals Oliver! and the world premiere of A Christmas Story. Eventually moving to Los Angeles, his talents brought him on-screen where he landed roles in the TV show’s This Is Us (NBC), The Last Ship (TNT), and Victorious (Nickelodeon).
Performing has always been a part of TROY’s life — and music has always been his driving passion. Producer Marti Frederiksen (Aerosmith, Carrie Underwood, Daughtry) at Sienna Studios in Nashville, TN said “I’ve worked with some of the top artists in the industry and TROY’s right on track to being on that list.”
TROY is also working closely with his music manager Michael Keeling (production/creative design work on Cold Play’s “Speed of Sound”, No Doubt’s “Tragic Kingdom” and Kacey Musgraves “Follow Your Arrow”) to enhance his musical talents. TROY just released his debut single “Unbreakable”, available now on all streaming platforms.
Thank you so much for doing this with us! Can you tell us the story of how you grew up?
I’m so happy to be doing this! I grew up in New Jersey and I lived in Morristown until I was 5 and then moved to Wall Township at the Jersey Shore. Both were great towns to grow up in. I played a lot of sports growing up but mostly loved to skateboard and surf, and of course sing. I’m from a great family with two older brothers. I decided to get into local musical theatre at 12, which eventually led me to moving into New York City at 14. I did a lot of performances in New York before I eventually moved to Los Angeles where I started acting in film and television while pursuing music.
Can you share a story with us about what brought you to this specific career path?
Wow, I’ve had so many cool moments it’s really hard to pick just one. But I do specifically remember one moment that sticks out. I was 8 years old and my oldest brother was in a band in middle school. They needed a lead singer to perform “Welcome to the Jungle” by Guns and Roses at the middle school talent show. Yours truly accepted the offer. Scared and excited at the same time, I remember singing in front of an audience of 16 years old girls screaming at me like a rockstar. At that moment I recall thinking, this is pretty cool.
Can you tell us the most interesting story that happened to you since you began your career?
The most interesting? That’s a tough one. I remember I was filming a Nickelodeon show called “Nick Studio 10” in New York City and I was dressed as a gigantic thumb trying to get people to thumb wrestle me in Times Square. I can proudly say I didn’t lose.
Can you share a story about the funniest mistake you made when you were first starting? Can you tell us what lesson you learned from that?
I was filming a movie that had a scene with me streaking through a college campus at 3 in the morning. I was hightailing it at Mach 1 when I tripped and slid like 6 feet through the grass. The lesson I learned was to always keep the camera rolling. You never know when you’re going to capture a great moment.
What are some of the most interesting or exciting projects you are working on now?
Lots! My debut single Unbreakable releases September 25th and the Unbreakable music video comes out October 1st. I’ve been busy in the studio recording several new songs. My next single will release in a few weeks with more following right behind it. I’ve begun working on my second music video and have started recording tracks for my 2021 album. I’m also the lead in a feature film project that should be released in 2021. But the most exciting bit of news is that I just became an Uncle for the first time! She’s precious and I can’t wait to get to know her.
We are very interested in diversity in the entertainment industry. Can you share three reasons with our readers about why you think it’s important to have diversity represented in film and television? How can that potentially affect our culture?
Absolutely. Each culture has something different to offer. With the world being highly connected through social media and the internet, the human experience can be easily shared. This provides us all with a chance for unity and knowledge of one another culture. Diversity also expands the ideology of role models. Look at Chadwick Boseman, not just as Black Panther, but playing roles like James Brown and Jackie Robinson. He was an absolute icon for so many people. Gal Gadot, Brie Larson, Kumail Nanjiani, Daniel Levy, all of these actors bring something special to the screen. Variety is the spice of life. And, entertainment is supposed to be tasteful. If it’s all one flavor, it’s boring. I think that the entertainment business affects our culture greatly. By showing inclusiveness in film, television, music, you name it, it brings us together.
What are your “5 things I wish someone told me when I first started” and why.
1: Don’t expect success out of the gate.
2: Have the courage to be disliked.
3: Get comfortable with being uncomfortable.
4: If you need to step on someone’s shoulders, pull them up with you.
5: You’re going to start wearing tighter pants, so you might as well get used to it.
Which tips would you recommend to your colleagues in your industry to help them to thrive and not “burn out”?
That’s a great question. Sometimes you need to step away, go for a walk, and breathe. It may feel like it’s a race to the finish line, but it’s not. Life isn’t a competition to see who is better. Recognize that you’re not always going to have days where you are on top of your game, and that’s okay.
You are becoming a person of influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. 🙂
Normalizing going to therapy. Imagine if everyone understood themselves and others better — the world would be a better place. You can’t love someone else if you don’t love yourself.
None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story about that?
There isn’t one particular person, but there are two, my parents. They are the people I’m the most grateful for. Simply put, they believe in me and that’s the story.
Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you share how that was relevant to you in your life?
“People are capable, at any time in their lives, of doing what they dream of.”
― Paulo Coelho, The Alchemist
Prior to coming to Nashville to record and perform my music, I read The Alchemist. That quote just really hit home.
Is there a person in the world whom you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch with, and why?
My Dad’s parents. They passed away before I was born. I’ve heard so many stories about them and I would’ve loved to have heard the stories from them. Plus, apparently my Grandma had a terrific singing voice. I would’ve loved to hear that too.
How can our readers follow you online?
They can follow me on