What a year... does anyone else feel like they have aged 10+ years? Times like these have been testing for individuals across the United States and the entire world - people out of jobs, losing their homes to wildfires and hurricanes and many people feeling isolated and alone during quarantine - and now with the holidays approaching. Life sometimes raises questions and a lot of times we don't have answers to them. Eli Grambling dives deep into these curiosities by having a conversation with God.
Get To Know Eli Grambling
"Yeah man, I grew up in North Florida listening to all of your favorite 90s Country artists; Brooks & Dunn, George Strait, Tim McGraw, Shania Twain... and that is the basis for a lot of my music. I started playing drums for music at church, but honestly, when I was younger I was way more involved in sports than I was in music. Around town nobody knew me as the "music kid", my identity and focus was sports. When I went to college, I played football. But “the shift” started to happen. I was beginning to “do” music more and more. I picked up my guitar freshman year of college and learned how to play. I started writing music immediately. Going to school in Macon, Georgia, I was exposed to a hotbed of classic Southern Rock. The Allman Brothers, Marshall Tucker Band and other groups got their starts there. So I would say, as I started to find myself in music throughout college, my style was birthed through 90s Country and the new Southern Rock influence that I was around all the time and a mix of modern country. Those things kind of fumbled into what I've become and have molded my music."
A Unique Sound Painting A Picture Of Life's Ups And Downs
I first came across Eli with his debut single "Lie Awake" back in January. I was blown away and puzzled, not for a lack of talent or songwriting, but for Eli's unique sound. I couldn't put a finger on it. It was a little Country, some Southern Rock, a dash of Pop. One thing I can tell you is that Eli's music is him. He’s not trying to be someone else - especially in a genre with so much talent. It's easy for artists to sound very similar, no matter how much talent they have. I can safely say Eli's voice is one of a kind. Country Music has always been filled with deep, meaningful songs, but 2020 has brought new meaning to them. What we are currently experiencing has people looking in the mirror and reflecting. "Peace" is a witty song about having a conversation with God and asking questions about things we will never get the answer to. In addition to asking these questions, this conversation is a call for strength and guidance as he sings:
"why my life is full of ups and downs
one day I'm on the mountaintop,
next day I'm face down on the ground
help me believe, even I can't see, Lord give me peace"
Eli Grambling has loads of raw talent! He’s had two singles, a heartbreak jam "Lie Awake" and a fun summer tune "Even if the Fish Don't Bite". Now with this meaningful song "Peace", Eli is showing all the tools on his belt and how he can put out quality PB & Jam sandwiches from all over the spectrum.
Inspiration Behind "Peace"
Written By: Eli Grambling and Connor Henderson, Produced By: Lucas Woodgeard
“My song "Peace" is basically a conversation between a person like us and God. “Peace” actually started back in the spring with the second line of verse 1... “Why did Lynyrd Skynyrd’s plane have to fall out of the sky?” After that, I started digging deep internally, and also asking my friends, “What do you really struggle with in life? What are some questions/scenarios that you find it hard to make peace with?”
From there, I just ran with the song. With everything going on in 2020, I knew this was something I had to finish and put out. The song was heading a certain way, with the person in the song never settling, not finding Peace, just continuing to struggle. I thought of my own life and how important Jesus is to me. I know that we CAN find Peace in what Jesus did for us. I really strived to change the direction of the song.
This wasn’t one of those songs I sat down and finished in 20 minutes. When writing, I was pretty stuck, so a couple months later I reached out to my buddy Connor Henderson for help. I pitched him the song, and we pretty much finished “Peace” in about 6 hours - over some stuffed crust pizza!
Later in the year, I think around August, The Grambling' Band and I recorded the song. My mom is in my band & harmonizes background vocals on all of our stuff. I really wanted her to be a feature on this song. So, starting in verse 2, listen for that!
Like I mentioned, 2020 has been hard on all of us, so I really hope this song gives each of you Peace to help get through the trouble. You can find that in Christ!
“I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.”
John 16:33 ESV"
Q & A With Eli Grambling
Q: What was it like being a college athlete and transitioning into music later on?
A: "I think the hardest thing was, and no one does this on purpose, the athletes all hang out together, the music kids hang out together and the kids invested in academics hang out together. On paper it looks bad, but that's kind of how it is. It was tough transitioning and immersing myself from the athlete world into the music world. Making connections and putting myself out there and networking wasn't always the easiest thing to do."
Q: Who are some of your biggest influences and supporters that have helped you chase your dream in music?
A: "I think, honestly it wasn’t my hometown at first, just because like I said before, I was always known as an athlete. When all of the sudden I started doing music, they didn't really know what to think about it. However, the people who I started to meet in this next chapter of my life really instilled confidence in me. As people started to see I was putting music out and that I was serious about it, my hometown crowd really came around. They have had some really nice things to say. When I dropped my debut single "Lie Awake", people, that day, were like "dude, this is amazing! I can't wait to hear more". That gave me inspiration and made me want to really work for this. Honestly, I met some people a little while back. We started working out together and one of the guys just went through a really bad break up. He told me "Lie Awake really spoke to me, and I really felt that". When people I'm close with or don't even know tell me "hey man, that song meant a lot to me" or "I don't even listen to Country Music, but Lie Awake was amazing", it really keeps me going."
Q: If you could go back 5-10 years, what advice would you give to your younger self?
A: "The biggest piece of advice to my younger self would be that time is such a precious thing, don't take advantage of it. I'll relate it to football… I'm in way better shape now than I was as a high school athlete who was being recruited. I didn't realize how much work I needed to actually put in and took it for granted. Basically I didn't put in the effort I should have because I thought football was going to last forever. Looking back I’d tell myself "hey, I could have done this, I could have done that". I would say to try to do your best. You can't see everything in hindsight, but try your best to put in the work and take advantage of every moment. Work your butt off for what you want, because when it's over, you can't go back."
Q: What is one song you wish you wrote and why?
A: "Oh man, I don't know why this is the first song that popped into my head, but I would say "Live Like You Were Dying" by Tim McGraw. I think it goes back to what I was just saying. If you realize you are about to die, a person is looking back at what you wish you’d done. It would have to be that song. It's just such a good song. Everyone can relate to "Live Like You Were Dying". It hits you in the heart."