Hayley Sales was born into an incredibly artistic family; her mother being a dancer and writer, her father a musician and sound engineer (Miles Davis, The Grateful Dead, The Ramones), who operated Glasswing Studios out of the upper floor of their Washington D.C home. “I was surrounded by music at all hours of the day. All types of music. I remember the melodies and beats rattling the floorboards. My childhood had a soundtrack filled up with everything from R&B and jazz to rock and Motown.” For many recording sessions, Sales would sit on the console and watch.
“Before I could talk, some part of me must have known I wanted to sing..when I was a baby, I’d raise my finger and if someone in my family didn’t start singing, I would burst into an irreversible temper-tantrum…I try to not do that anymore,”
The family relocated to Portland, Oregon when Sales was four. Within several months, Sales began playing piano and participating in local musical theatre productions. At the age of five, something happened that altered her life indefinitely. “My friend was playing a tape of Judy Garland singing ‘Get Happy.” I can’t explain it. But I was captivated. I was in love…maybe obsessed. I couldn’t stop listening. I made my friend play the song over and over again until she finally just took out the cassette and gave it to me. I went home that night and listened ten more times.” Sales learned to sing by studying the voices of Judy Garland, Billie Holiday, Frank Sinatra, among others.
Before reaching sixth grade, she had begun writing songs and likewise had performed in over one hundred productions. By middle school, Sales was accepted into the private performing arts school, The Northwest Academy, where she studied both classical and jazz music, film making, acting and dance. She continued to study until graduating two years early, with honors, at sixteen. To this day, Sales continues to take online university courses. She was accepted into Yale’s drama program but decided to continue pursuing her career independently.
Following graduation, her family moved again, this time to an organic blueberry farm on Vancouver Island, British Columbia. “I thought my life was over,” Sales laughs. “I went from a cutting edge, urban arts school to a farm on an island floating off the coast of Canada.” The dramatic shift, however, proved to be beneficial. “I spent every second of the day learning the technical side of music in the studio or sitting in my bedroom writing songs. Music was all that I had. Besides my own company. “
Within a half a year of her family relocating to Vancouver Island, Sales landed a lead role in a teen horror film, leading to a move down to Los Angeles to pursue acting shortly after turning seventeen. The move ended abruptly when a bout of acid reflux caused her to lose her voice. “For over a year, I could barely talk. It was the hardest year of my life. Everything that I had identified with was gone. I was speechless. Literally,” she recalls.
When her voice finally returns, Sales quickly returned into the studio and recorded a full length demo album which she released on her own label, Drifter Records, at the age of 17. Right before her nineteen birthday, Sales signed with Universal Music Canada. Her first album, Sunseed, was released in 2007, with singles ‘What You Want’ and ‘Keep Drivin’ landing in the Canadian Top 40 and on the charts in both Australia and Japan. Sales’ mesmerizing, sultry vocals and infectious melodies caught on instantly. In 2008, she won Best Mainstream Artist at The Canadian Radio Music Awards. Her sophomore album, featuring guest appearances by G Love and Donavon Frankenreiter, When The Bird Became a Book, was released in 2012. The music video for Just Pretend, directed by Josh Forbes (The Fray, Sarah Bareilles) generated over five million views within three weeks of its release.
Additionally, since 2012, Sales has dedicated a lot of her energy on her acting career repped by Paradigm and Play Management. Within five years, Sales was able to go from a lot of training and no credits to landing the role of Hope Summers in Deadpool 2, alongside Ryan Reynolds and Josh Brolin, as well as guest star appearances on Supergirl, and Supernatural on the CW Network.
“I am incredibly excited about this next album,” (due Summer 2019) she says. “Over the past couple years, I have been so humbled by rejection, so battered down to nothing, that I have nothing to lose. I’ve realized that the only thing of true importance, the only thing that really matters to me, is to make music that presses out the edges out of my heart…to make music that strips me naked, exposes the most breakable parts of myself, and hopefully, in doing so, helps a listener feel less alone. This next phase of my career means giving everything I’ve got towards my music and acting. Someone once told me ‘If you knew you were going to die tomorrow, what songs would you sing?’ Those are the songs I intend to record. I am going to put everything I have into this album. Having had so much of myself torn to shreds over the past five years, so much heartbreak and frustration, it is my solace.”