EXCLUSIVE: Gunnar Gehl Chats New Music, Performing and More

Rising musician Gunnar Gehl is back with music. After taking some time off this summer to focus on writing and enjoying life, Gehl just performed his first show since the start of the pandemic. His latest release, “She’s In My Head” came out in May 2021, the intimate fan show he performed where friends, family and fans came out to see him at Kiss Kiss Bang Bang night lounge. We chatted with him at the venue to catch up with him and his musical projects.

Photo Credit: Will Heffernan

Is this your first show back since the pandemic?

Number one.

How does that feel?

So amazing. I’m going to pay a little tribute time when I’m up on stage. But the fact that this is my first show back in over two years, got a full band with me. It’s such a great vibe, such a great crew of my friends.

Photo Credit: Will Heffernan

So, is this kind of like the start of you know, a few shows, maybe tour?

That’s the goal. We have a lot of, I think Why Don’t We just coming by tonight A lot of cool other artists that, you know, hopefully tours work out with and I get on tour with. And so, yeah, this, hopefully just gets the ball rolling. Let’s everyone know. I’m back, I’m here to do this and it’s been a while and the noise got loud, but I’m here to stand out.

You also haven’t released music in a minute, is this the return of music for you as well? What vibes are you going forward with your new music?

So, it’s ironic, I guess by the time this is out. People will already know because of the show, but, there’s a song, an old song of mine, “Heartbeat,” that I’m sure you remember, that song has been one of my favorites for a long time.

We never officially put it out and we’re playing it tonight. And I think the goal is to see how people like it, but I think we’re going to reproduce and rerecord that and put that out as like a, you know, kind of a tribute stepping stones to get a lot of new music going.

Photo Credit: Will Heffernan

How would you compare this song to “She’s In My Head?”

She’s in my head was really fun, kind of just a straightforward, fun pop song for the summer. I think the music that’s coming in the next couple of months has a lot more and I think “She’s In My Head” is an amazing, I love that song so much fun, but I think the songs that are going to be coming in the next couple of months, Starting with “Heartbeat” have just real true honest stories.

They’re a little bit dark on the darker side of like, kind of different than what “She’s In My Head” was, but in a really cool way. And I think like a way that really shows me coming out more as an artist and my development as an artist and what I listen to, what I think is cool. And, um, I’m just excited and I’m excited to see how people like it and how everyone, you know, how the wave starts going and making sure everyone’s on board with.

When it comes to writing, do you write the lyrics or melody first?

It’s weird. It always kind of depends. Sometimes I’ll go in with a couple of lines and that’ll be the start and it’s like, I want to tell this story. I want to do this. Sometimes we go into a session and just find chords and a little bit of a groove. It sounds good. It’s weird with like, when you start singing melodies off, like sometimes for me, like, you know, there’s chords going and I’m just like singing random melodies. The way that the things come off, like bowels and the shapes of words, like sometimes certain words are just meant for certain melodies.

And I get like, I’ve had songs where I’ve started just singing nonsense and certain things start to stick. And we’re like, whoa, that’s a really cool thing that, that just came out of my mouth.

Photo Credit: Will Heffernan

Since your EP, “One Second One Day” has come out, do you think your writing style has changed?

You know, what’s crazy is that EP came from me just having that incredible desire to write stuff for live music. I think so much of that record has like it’s so anthemic and big and like rock, you can pop, like it just has this big, these big courses, a lot of the stuff that I’m singing tonight. Then COVID hit, and the writing kind of changed. Instead of writing for these live moments.

I started to write about, you know, like other parts of my life and kind of like tap into other things and write stuff that maybe isn’t going to be that crazy live song, but something that I still like, and think is really cool and fun. Yeah, I’d say so that’s the difference between kind of the later stuff and the stuff that’s been coming out in the new stuff.

I’m curious after these shows start to get going again, kind of where my head will land because after doing rehearsals and doing this show, like, all I want to do is have these, these live moments.

You’re co-signed to a pretty big management, Scooter Braun, who from that kind of management team would you do dream to collaborate with?

Oh God. I mean, I’ve always been, I think so much of like my sound today has come from like growing up, listening to Justin (Bieber).

Yeah, that’d be awesome. I think like that’s like the dream of all dreams here now, but I think that, some realistic kind of in the near future type of things that I would like to do is like, I know that he manages Martin Garrix and I’d love to do kind of like a, more of like a fun DJ house type of record with him.

As a couple, this guy, Baby Jake, who is a really cool, like rock artist, our music is totally different, but he’s just a cool guy. And I like hanging out with him. I think in the short term it would be like probably like a DJ record like that. I think that’d be fine doing something with Demi would be really cool and special, that the other dream would be like, obviously Justin or Arian, but that’s far-fetched.

If you could set up a fan in any setting for them to listen to your music, what setting would that be?

It would be this a hundred percent. It would be tonight. It would be, if somebody has never heard of me, if I want to gain new fans in anyway, like there’s no better way in my mind than being on tour and having someone bring their friend who doesn’t know who I am. I think that in a live setting like tonight, I think I can cross over a lot of people.

What is one quote you’ve heard in life that you’d want to ECHO out to fans?

That’s such a good question. I have no idea. A quote. It’s like a little saying. I think something that I really learned over this last year, it was patience, I never knew within me or that I was capable of.

I just, I would say, be patient and trust the process, everything happened so, so fast for me, PrettyMuch tour and I had to like instantly hit pause with COVID and everything that kind of went down. And I just learned that patience is actually a good thing instead of a bad thing because I was so against it for so long. Just trusting. Yeah. Trusting the process, trusting your gut, your heart, following like what you want to do. I mean, here we are. We’re doing a show first show out of COVID like.

If you’re in the LA area, make sure you get tickets to Gunnar’s show at The Novo by getting tickets here.

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