MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WREG) — A Memphis-born musician involved in projects with superstars Beyoncé and Billie Eilish was celebrating their Grammy nods Tuesday.
Derek Renfroe, 27, is credited as a songwriter for Beyoncé’s “Plastic Off the Sofa” single and also played guitar on the track. The song and Beyoncé’s album “Renaissance” were both nominated for Grammys.
“Renaissance” is nominated for Album of the Year and Best Dance/Electronic Music Album, and “Plastic Off the Sofa” is nominated for Best Traditional R & B Performance.
“The album of the year is the first formal nomination where my name is listed,” said Renfroe. “It’s definitely a team of people that work together to make all the stuff happen but to be just a part of it is really, really cool, and you know, it feels amazing.”
Renfroe was also an assistant music director and a mix assistant for “Billie Elish Live at the O2.” The concert has been nominated for Best Music Film.
“I helped build the show. They did that in LA and toured for the entire year, and that was the show that was made into a live project,” Renfroe said. “It’s really cool to be working in two different fields, so to speak. In the studio and the live side.”
Renfroe, who is now based in Los Angeles, began his musical career at White Station Middle School and was part of the All West Tennesee Jazz Band.
“I started when I was 12,” said Renfroe. “The first band I was ever in, I got kicked out because I was too serious about it. I cared too much.”
Renfroe was also in the Stax music program and received a scholarship to the University of Southern California’s Thorton School of music.
Renfroe didn’t have any ties to the music industry but has worked tirelessly as a performer and music director. He said it was always a goal to work with greats like Beyoncé and Billie Eilish.
“It also happened organically, which is really cool,” he said. There have been parts of it where some people would never get to do some of these things, and I’m just really grateful that I’ve got to experience what I have just five years out of college,” he said.
Renfroe doesn’t know yet if he will attend the Grammys but said he will be watching.
“It’s been a long, long road and process to get here.” Renfroe said.” I’m just so grateful and excited.
Beyonce’ leads the Grammy nominations. The awards show will be held on February 5 in Los Angeles.
For a complete list of nominations, click here.