Nashville-based artist Ellrod unveiled his debut single “Concept” on May 31st.
Co-written by Ellrod, Leah Sykes, Sydney Cubit and produced by Luke Arens, “Concept” delivers one-of-a-kind melodies accompanied by an outstanding production.
“Concept” is a song that’s there to signify to you that you don’t have to be what everyone else wants you to be or what they think you should be, just be what you believe yourself to be and show people that’s the true you and they’ll love you for it,” explains Ellrod.
With this debut single, the Tampa-native is introducing himself as one of the most promising up-and-coming artists in the music industry by offering a distinctive and crafty sound that doesn’t follow the rules of an ordinary pop record.
Currently working on his first EP, Ellrod is a name you want to keep on your radar.
“Concept” is now available worldwide.
Introduce yourself - where are you from?
What up! I’m Ellrod! I’m originally from Tampa, FL and moved to Nashville about 3 years ago.
What's your story?
My story is pretty simple. I’m blessed to have grown up with parents who were in love with music so much that they supported whatever I wanted to do in that regard. They’ve been the most amazing support system. I fell in love with music at an early age. When I was 9, I was obsessed with NSYNC and watching Justin Timberlake take over a crowd. As I got older, my dad really got me into Michael Jackson. Legitimately, as soon as I watched that man, I knew exactly what I wanted to do.
Could you tell us a little bit about your childhood? Any favorite memories?
My childhood was just sports and music. I grew up playin hockey, football and basketball , which I think gave me a little bit of a competitive mindset…I think.. hahaha. But I ended up 5’8” so those dreams never came to fruition. I do have a ton of favorite memories but I’ll stick to some of the music ones. I remember one night I sat down with my dad to watch a special with Luther Vandross and Michael Jackson and Usher danced together and it was literally the moment I told my dad I wanted to dance and sing just like that.
When did your love for art and music begin?
It began super young. I think I was legit 9 when I started singing to my couch like that shit was Madison Square Garden…. just missing all the people. hahaha.
What did you grow up listening to?
I grew up listening to NSYNC, and Backstreet Boys and went on to rock music for a long time like Fall out Boy and Paramore and stuff like that. All the while I was listening to Lil Romeo and Bow Wow and had just started on Drake when I was about that age. He was a huge musical influence cause I loved the nursery rhyme kind of writing style with his melodies. That was back in like “Marvin’s Room” and “Best I ever had” days. Such good shit.
When did you start getting involved in the music industry?
Truly, I started getting involved with the music industry only about two years ago, when I really started working working in Nashville. I had been with the creatives for a long time, they’re the greatest part to this world. The industry is necessary, but I still don’t know half the shit that goes down. So, I’d say I’m still kind of getting involved. I just got my toes wet, haven’t stuck the whole foot in yet.
What gave you the confidence to be an artist and release your original music?
Honestly the people around me. I have an amazing group of friends here and an amazing support system. I’ve been working with some of my best friends since day 1 and that hasn’t stagnated at all. I’ve always wanted to do this, so I think the confidence was kind of always in me, but I needed that love and that support from people I really love and respect to be like, go, you know? But truthfully, that confidence is in everyone.
How would you define Ellrod, the artist?
I would define myself as the guy that helps you know you’re not alone; in the way that no matter what’s going down and how crazy shit gets, someone is by your side and believes in you and is cheering you on. That’s what I want to be. Just a way to realize like, “Yo, fuck what everyone thinks I HAVE to be, I’m gonna be me and there are still gonna be people who love me for exactly that.” That’s what I want people to get from me.
"Concept" is your debut single. How does it feel like?
It feels insane. I’m just so happy to have something out, but “Concept” was for sure going to be the debut for the exact reason I said before. “Concept” is a song that’s there to signify to you that you don’t have to be what everyone else wants you to be or what they think you should be, just be what you believe yourself to be and show people that’s the true you and they’ll love you for it. We’re in an era of truth I think. I think everyone loves seeing peoples true selves and we’re not scared to compliment that and we’re not scared to uplift that, cause we shouldn’t be.
What's the story behind "Concept"?
“Concept” is just a song about not worrying about what everyone wants you or deems you to be or be able to do in this life. Like if you wanna be a musician and your friends don’t support it, but you know it’s what truly makes you happy and has you feelin fulfilled then fuck it. Do it. The personal story behind it is just that I can get fed up with the music industry at times. It’s hard a shit man. Like you get to this point where you’re like, ok shit, I finally feel like I’m doing the right thing in this life and talking about the things I want to talk about, and then someone goes, oooo but I loved the other stuff you were doing! That’s why I’m just like, fuck it, do what you want and what really makes you feel good in this life, cause it doesn’t last long.
You worked with Leah Sykes, Sydney Cubit and Luke Arens on this song. Could you describe us the songwriting/production process?
DUDE. They’re honestly the best. Such insane talent in every one of these people, Leah is an insane writer and singer who you all will know one day, Luke is legit one of the best producers I’ve ever had the privilege of being in the room with. Sydney is a crazy good singer and writer, and one day is going to have an insane artist career too; and all three of them make me feel like I need to get better at what I do. Above all that shit, they’re three of my best friends and three of the best people I’ve been lucky enough to get to know. NOW, to the question, we got into the room with a little bit of a drag, I think everyone had had a little much fo the industry at that point. Leah asked if anyone had any concepts that day, and me, being the idiot I am, replied.. “Fuck a concept.” We all kind of paused for a second and Syd just said, “That’s actually kind of a cool concept.” From there Luke was determined to kind of go against the grain with the production and took a lot of influence from Kanye’s sporadic production style and kind of put his own spin on that. We got the chorus out first… it’s easy when 40% of your words are the f word. Then Leah literally spat out almost all of that first verse and it just rolled out super easy. It’s really easy with people like them.
How's it like to create art with your friends?
I would have it no other way. For real. There’s no matchable feeling to creating something amazing with people you care about and that care about you.
When did you start working on this song?
Craziest shit, songs take so long to come out. We started working on Concept June 20th, 2018 so almost a full year. Crazy.
What made you want to release this song as your debut single?
This was the first song I felt like truly let me say what I wanted to say. Honestly, it’s that simple, so I knew it had to be the first one I put out.
What can you tell us about the artwork for "Concept"? Who helped you create it?
To start, I really wanted a cartoon version of myself. haha. But all the shit in the picture relates to the lyrics of the song. I wanted the strawberries in there, cause that line is talking about how the industry loves carbon copies of whatever worked in the past, and I want something different sometimes. I actually hired out the artwork on a site called fiverr.com, and then had a good friend of mine, Hunter Berry help me finish it. I can’t give away all the details but there are hidden messages in the artwork.
Are you working on an EP? If yes, what can you tell us about it?
I am working on an EP… AND THAT’S ALL I CAN TELL YOU!
As an artist, what do you want to accomplish?
I just wanna be able to influence people in a positive light. I know we all go through the same shit just in different areas of life. I just want to say something that needs to be said.
What appeals you the most about being an artist?
Being able to speak my own truth and it relating to someone else’s life to the point that they feel inspire by it, it’s something that’s really amazing about music.
In your opinion, what would make the world a better place?
I think the world is a pretty great place, and I think with everyday we’re on the way to making it a little better than it was yesterday. There’s a lot that can be done yet, but I think understanding each other is the biggest step; realizing that not everyone had the same walk of life as you and that’s the beauty of our species.
What biggest life lessons have you learned so far?
I honestly have learned way too many lessons just in the past year. I’ve needed to learn a ton, I wouldn’t say any bigger than the other.
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