Fascinating beats from a mixed playlist that consists of Imagine Dragons, Oh Wonder, Juls, Sabrina Claudio and Jidenna, N.E.R.D., and J. Cole to name a few, is just where the moment of creativity reaches its boiling point and Gabe Roland, a singer/songwriter in Los Angeles, releases pure gold. With a fan base that is steadily growing, hand in hand with his energetic stage presence, the love for Roland as an artist is unparalleled.
It's not just his fans and undeniable talent that have created his loyal following, working with household names such as: Justin Timberlake, Mary. J. Blige, Janelle Monae, (and also being nominated for a Grammy) that have put him on the map!
We got a moment to speak with the star on his rise to fame, how he stays relevant, as well on how he bridges the gap from rising star to main stream.
The following has been edited for continuity purposes:
IdentifyLA: How did you get your start in the industry and what grew you to singing?
Gabe Roland: I got my start writing and producing. It gave me a different perspective on how to make a song for others. When you’re creating for someone else, you have to find a balance of being yourself while being relatable to others. I’ve always wanted to sing/rap/dance whatever lol. That’s been my love from the beginning.
IDLA: It's a tough market, how do you stay positive and keep a straight mind to stay in the game?
GR:I avoid negativity at all cost. If you negative, you can’t be around me. I don’t worry about what everyone else is doing. I just focus and do me.”
IDLA: You've worked with a few very reputable names, what has been the best feedback and lessons learned from your experience?
GR: Best advice/feedback has been to trust your genius and not abandon it because no seems to get it at the moment. Sometimes, most times, timing is everything.
IDLA: What were you feeling when you received the Grammy nomination?
GR: I cried. Things were really hard at the time for me and I wasn’t even expecting it. It’s a rush that I can’t explain but it felt so good. It felt like validation that I belonged here.
IDLA: You're an 'artist to watch,' what is the key, in your opinion, to staying relevant?
GR: You have to enjoy what you do. When you love what you do, it doesn’t feel like work. For me, I enjoy pushing myself and sharpening my skills. I’m always creating and looking to be inspired. I don’t really buy into a concept that says I made it. There’s levels to this so I know I gotta stay hungry and ready while having fun. That’s the key in my opinion.
IDLA: What is the inspiration behind your songs/are they from personal experiences?
GR: Inspiration comes from everywhere. I get it from fashion blogs, a photo or even a location. Sometimes it comes from personal experience. Everything to me has a soundtrack. It’s just on me to figure it out.
IDLA: What helps you create music for other artists and how do you make sure you create a different vibe for yourself?
GR: I rarely make music for others without at least having a convo with them about what they want to get across with this song. It’s like if they give me their measurements, I can create a tailor made song that fits them differently then it would just anybody. Vibes are like finger prints so I try not to worry about my vibe when I’m creating for someone else because in the end they’re vibe will always be their own even if we both create the same record.
IDLA: What can your fans expect from you in 2018?
GR: My fans can expect more everything. Definitely more music and more performances. I wanna raise my game all the way around for my fans in 2018 and give them something that they’ve never experienced before at least with me. The visuals, the sounds, the performances are gonna be crazy and so is the energy. It’s a lot to get done but I’m ready.
IDLA: Best piece of advice you've received, what was it and who was it from?
GR: "Timing is everything. I wrote ‘Mirrors’ six years before it came out. Trust your songs.” Justin Timberlake
IDLA: IdentifyLA strives to ‘bridge the gap from rising artist to main stream’, how do you plan to make that transition, what worked for you, how did you find your niche?
GR: There’s a lot of trial and error and that’s totally okay. For me, it’s my live show. It’s my favorite part. That’s the place where the audience can decide for themselves what they think.