Back in 2010 a group of friends started getting together and singing. This wasn’t a bunch of drunks at the karaoke bar letting off steam on a Friday night, but rather a talented group who were dedicated enough to start what would become a 15-person choir. The group would ultimately pared down to five members and become known as The Eagle Rock Gospel Singers, which is fitting considering that gospel forms the underlying foundation of what the Los Angeles-based outfit is doing. Legends of the genre like The Dixie Hummingbirds, Washington Phillips and Sister Rosetta Tharpe serve as influences, but so do contemporary rock acts like The Black Keys, Wilco and Calexico. Listen to the Singers and you’ll hear rhythm and blues, alt-country, indie rock, and folk, but all with a fun spin that, ideally, would perhaps draw younger music fans to explore the long history and heritage of gospel music. While the group certainly dabbles in faith – it does, after all, come with the territory – their music is for everyone.
On July 14th The Eagle Rock Gospel Singers will release their new album No Glory. Compared to their previous album, No Glory finds the group honing in on vocal arrangements, poignant lyrics, and rhythmic grooves.
Glide Magazine is excited to premiere the tune “Momma Told Me”, a funky spiritual that explodes with brass, soulful harmonies, and rocking, bluesy guitar riffs. The song perfectly encapsulates this group’s ability to pay faithful homage to the past while still putting their own modern and danceable spin on the genre. Listen to “Momma Told Me” and read our chat with Kim Garcia of The Eagle Rock Gospel Singers below…
What inspired this song? Is there a specific story behind it?
This song is about wanting. More specifically about wanting something you don’t need…and getting so low that you don’t know how you got there. I lost my mom several years ago, and there’s not a day that goes by that I don’t think of her. She was extremely wise, honest and had the best words of advice for every day of my life with her. She didn’t expect me to be perfect, but she did expect me to keep my faith (with or without her). She is a constant reminder to me to not get down, even when I’m at my lowest.
What was the recording process like for this song? Do you have any funny/great stories from the studio?
The writing and recording process went in a few waves. I originally had a slightly different chorus, but Matt Wignall, our producer, asked me to listen to Muddy Waters for some ideas on getting a bluesier sound. That and a slight nod to the Rolling Stones makes for a nice mix. It’s not your ordinary gospel song, but what good is ordinary? I want people to really listen and relate. Hopefully, we were able to get that point across.
What do you think this particular song brings to the album?
It’s got a great soul vibe to it, with the blues mixed in there. I really like how this song takes a turn for the unexpected at the bridge. It’s got a great feel and I think makes you want to dance! Happy to have my bandmate, Andrea Chita singing along with me on this track.
What’s the best/most memorable thing your momma ever told you?
There are tons of things she’s said to me growing up, but I’ll tell you a funny one. If my room was dirty or messy, my mom would come in and shout, “Kim, it looks like the devil came in and jumped around!” That was her way of telling me to clean my room. I’m from Texas, so it makes sense. Every time I think about this, I die laughing. It’s still pretty funny to me. Haha
If you could describe your music to someone using only five words, how would you describe it?
Not your ordinary gospel band!
The Eagle Rock Gospel Singers release No Glory on July 14th. For more music and info visit ergospelsingers.com.
Photo credit: Jesse Dvorak