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Pittsburgh Artist of the Week: Tory Silver

Tory Silver recently moved to Pittsburgh from Boston where she’s been releasing music and playing shows since 2017. Tory’s new album "Slowly" is a deep dive into everyday emotions and observations like those found on the song “Bath Water,” which tells a tale of tender moments shared with a loved one while dealing with the dread of unwanted situations.

Tory spoke with WYEP’s Joey Spehar about abusive roommates, love for The Beatles, and lake house living.

Tory Silver and her band include:

guitar, vocals, lyrics by Tory Silver (she/they)
bass, guitar, audio engineer by Marcel Damiano (he/him)
drums by Ray Cohen (he/him)
background vocals (on Bath Water) by Carly Kraft (she/her)
cello by Jeff Tang (he/him)
synth, keys by Kevin O’Connell (he/him)

This conversation may be lightly edited for content, clarity, or length.

What’s your musical history up to this point?

I started playing out in Boston in 2017, and have since released two studio albums, an EP and a single. I’ve had the opportunity to open for some cool national touring acts like Seratones, Katy Kirby, Ezra Furman and Summer Salt. I just completed my first tour and can’t wait for the next!

How do you describe your sound?

My sound I’d say is under the umbrella of indie rock, but there are definitely some blues and jazz influences tucked in there. Maybe a mashup of The Beatles, Nirvana, and Peach Pit?

Tell us more about the song “Bath Water.” What inspired you to write it? 

I wrote this song after living with a roommate who was verbally abusive. At the time, I was in a relationship with someone I really cared about and working a job I didn’t like. The song is sort of a mix of emotions – the sweet tender moments shared with someone, the pit in my stomach when my roommate would come home and then the continuous dread of going to work.

This was the first song written on my album "Slowly," so it holds some significance there. This song made me realize that my writing style is about everyday emotions and observations – it had always been like that, but this was the song that really made me go, “Ah, that’s the songwriter I am.”

What was the first album that really changed your life? 

Growing up, 90% of the music I listened to was The Beatles. I’m still a huge huge huge Beatles fan. I might say “Let it Be” is an impactful album for me and had a ton of influence on my own sound, but maybe the one that changed my life would be The Black Keys “El Camino.” The first time I heard it I couldn’t believe how good every song was – they are all hits! After finding that album I started writing more of my own music, and found a lot of inspiration from that album. I think that album really set me off.

What’s the best part about making music in Pittsburgh?

Since I’m new to the scene here, it all feels so fresh and exciting. I love getting to know the community, and I’ve met a lot of great musicians, and even better people.

Which Pittsburgh artist do you wish more people knew about?

Paging Doctor Moon! I volunteered at Girls Rock! Pittsburgh this summer and met a lot of really great people including Kirsten, the guitar player and singer. Really sweet band.

Any other super interesting things we should know about you?

I wanna buy a lakehouse in the next couple years, so if anyone wants in on it, talk to me.

Learn more about Tory Silver:


Check out previous Pittsburgh Artists of the Week here.

Joey Spehar is a Pittsburgh native who started as a volunteer D.J. at WYEP, fresh out of college in 2006. He took on any job they’d let him do like editing audio, engineering remote broadcasts, and shoveling snow.