Today we are featuring one of the most thrilling new groups in contemporary soul music—Gabriels. And lucky for us, they performed three songs, one of which is still unreleased, live for Broken Record.
Gabriels consists of three very distinct pillars of talent: lead singer Jacob Lusk, who was raised in Compton singing gospel. Keyboardist and producer Ryan Hope, who grew up a lover of dance music in his native UK. And Los Angeles native, Ari Balouzian, who serves as Gabriels' in-house composer and violinist.
Gabriels’ origin story is as unconventional as their diverse musical backgrounds. In 2016 Ryan Hope and Ari Balouzian were hired to direct and score a commercial with a gospel choir. After hearing the choir director Jacob Lusk sing, a light went off for Ari and Ryan. Over the course of the next couple of years, the trio started to record and release songs independently. In 2021, those songs caught fire online. Sir Elton John said their debut EP was one of the most seminal records he’d heard in the last 10 years.
On today’s episode Rick Rubin sits down with Gabriels to hear how they were able to create a working environment that allowed space for vulnerability and musical exploration. And lead singer Jacob Lusk tells a harrowing story about getting lost in the LA county jail system in an effort to clear his name so he could appear in the finale of American Idol.
You can hear a playlist of some of our favorite songs by Gabriels HERE.
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