Q&A with GENTRI
GENTRI is not your run of the mill pop trio. Comprised of three highly-trained tenors, Brad Robins, Casey Elliott, and Bradley Quinn Lever, GENTRI's orchestral, cinematic sound and absolutely stunning three-part harmonies are not only unlike anything you've ever heard before, but they're also incredibly inspiring. The trio's new album, Rise, released in February 2016 continues to tell their inspirational story and urges listeners to to rise to their own potential. With the release of Rise behind them, GENTRI is looking toward the future already, with tour dates planned well into the fall. Catch them live and watch the powerful video for single, "Solider" below!
Interview by Dom Vigil
Can you tell us a little bit about GENTRI for any readers who may not be familiar?
We are a tenor trio from Salt Lake City. Our music is a fusion of cinematic pop, sweeping orchestrations and dynamic harmonies. We met doing a local production of Les Miserable in 2014 and decided to form a group at the recommendation of the wife of one of our group members (Casey).
You just released your new album, Rise. What does this release mean to you?
Our new album features 8 original songs and 2 covers. The title, RISE, itself symbolizes the literal rise of the group as we’ve made great strides in a relatively short amount of time. More metaphorically, it represents a call to action for each of us to rise to our potential.
The overall theme of Rise is one of positivity and hope. Was there a certain moment when you knew that you needed to create an album like this?
We wanted to make sure that the messages conveyed in our songs were those that challenged the listener to live life more fully and love more deeply. The messages of these songs are an extension of the core message of GENTRI itself. When it comes to self-improvement and trying to be better today than we were yesterday, we are certainly no exception.
What did you hope to achieve during the writing and recording process of Rise? Were there any difficult moments to overcome?
We wanted the music and lyrics to reflect the things that matter most to us - relationships with family, chasing our dreams, and living life to the fullest. The biggest challenge when writing and recording an album always seems to be putting it all together in a way that comes across as authentic.
How do you feel you’ve grown with Rise since the release of your self-titled EP?
RISE reflects the musical vision that we’ve had for our sound since day one. We want to make pop music that is powerful, and really makes you feel something. We hope our big instrumental arrangements, melodies, and vocal interplay lift up our listeners. RISE really captures the essence of what we’re about musically.
You also released a music video for your single “Soldier.” What was the inspiration behind this song?
The inspiration behind “Soldier” was the every day hero that quietly goes about doing what he or she does without fanfare or recognition. It was a tribute to those who sacrifice so much for no other reason than they love what and who they're fighting for more than themselves.
“Soldier” is not only very moving on its own, but the music video tells a story about the “soldier” in all of us. Was there a specific story you wanted to tell with the video?
There wasn’t a single story that we were trying to call out necessarily more than another in the video, rather we wanted to highlight everyday people and change the way people view others, recognizing that there is everyday greatness inside each and every one of us. In addition, we wanted to shed light on the fact that those who quietly do what they do, are motivated by a sincere love for who and what they choose to fight for.
Your music video for “Dare” is also very inspirational. How did you come across Alissa Sizemore’s story and decide to create a video around it?
We came across a video of Alissa dancing at the local high school that had gone viral. Her mother had posted the video that had been taken on a cell phone. We were so moved by what we saw, and knew that hers would be the perfect story to tell in the our video. We asked ourselves, if an 8-year-old girl can lose her leg and continue to still pursue what she loves, what is stopping us? It was truly inspirational and we’re honored to have had the chance to work with her.
With Rise out now, do you have any plans to hit the road or any other big goals for 2016?
As with any artist, the goal after an album release is to perform for as many people as possible. We continue to book new shows on almost a weekly basis and want to reach as many people in new markets across the country as possible.
What would you like listeners to be able to take away from the new album or your music in general?
Everyone has a dream and often times the only thing stopping them from pursuing it is themselves. Life is truly a gift and we should embrace and learn from its challenges and learn to love and enjoy the moments of brilliance. It is a marathon filled with moments of hardship and struggle, triumph and celebration. We hope our music serves as a sound track to the lives of those who choose to listen to it - buoying them up when they are struggling and empowering them when they are succeeding.
Thank you for taking the time to chat with us! Is there anything else you’d like to add?
At the core of what we hope to accomplish with GENTRI is inspire our listeners to become the best they can be regardless of where they are or what they do