Landry Cantrell is the artist behind the amazing song, Before You. Going into the studio with producer, Sean Hill, the lovely album, Projections, was the result (read the TBAP review here, and to read the TBAP article, A Deeper Look Into Landry Cantrell’s ‘Before You,’ go here). Landry took some time today to answer some of our questions. Follow our conversation below:
Miranda ~ Hello Landry! Glad to have you visit TBAP today! Tell us a bit about yourself.
Landry: Hello! I am a 25-year-old singer/songwriter from Northern California with big dreams, a passion for music and a heart for God. I lead worship at the church my dad pastors, and run a local recording studio. Everything that I do points back to music in some way or another.
Miranda ~ How did you become a Christian? Tell us your story.
Landry: I was raised in a pastor’s home, so the Word of God has always been a huge part of my life. From a young age, my parents instilled certain principles in me that have never left. I guess the easy answer is that I have served God my entire life, but it wasn’t until my early teenage years that I really started to develop a strong relationship with Him on my own.
Miranda ~ You sing so passionately! When did music become a part of your life and, what particular events led you to become a professional?
Landry: Growing up around the church, and constantly being around the music there played a huge part for sure. In addition to pastoring the church, my dad ran a recording studio throughout my entire childhood. Being exposed to all the music that went on in the studio definitely played a huge role in why I am doing what I do now.
Miranda ~ The song, Before You, is simply brilliant and remarkable! It tells a heartrending, yet, hopeful story; could you elaborate more on your personal experience that led you to write this particular song?
Landry: As a songwriter, there are a lot of times that I like to channel other people’s situations and try to get inside of their mind and emotions. This song wasn’t born from a particular individual necessarily, but from the point of view of a lot of people that I have come in contact with… of course, inevitably, some of my own insecurities and vulnerabilities bleed through in the verses. The goal was that people would relate to the pain projected in the verses and find comfort in the hope that the chorus proclaims.
Miranda ~ Why did you name your album Projections?
Landry: Think about a projector and the way that it displays images. The simplest explanation is that “Projections” just means the images or ideas that come from my mind. In other words, this is the message that I am projecting to the world. The word “Projections” can also deal with our goals and dreams for the future. Seeing as a lot of this album talks about my own dreams, I thought that it was only fitting.
Miranda ~ Your love for metaphor is obvious and clearly runs deep. What led you to this style of songwriting?
Landry: If we look into scripture and analyze the sermons of Jesus, a lot of his messages were taught in parables or metaphors. I think that sometimes a message presented in a metaphor can be more thought-provoking than one that is more plainly stated.
Growing up, I was a huge fan of C.S. Lewis and how he sprinkled religious metaphors throughout the Chronicles of Narnia. He was able to open up doors and conversations without ever coming across as preachy. As a kid, I would write stories that emulated this, and as my passion for music grew, it naturally transitioned into my songwriting as well.
Miranda ~ What would you say is your most important principle in choosing the lyrics for a song you’re writing?
Landry: I just want my lyrics to be honest and relatable.
Miranda ~ When do you know the beats are right for a particular song?
Landry: This one isn’t something that I can necessarily explain. When it comes to the musical aspect of things, it’s more of a gut feeling than a formula I can calculate.
Miranda ~ How would you describe your studio experience while working on your album with Sean Hill?
Landry: Where do I even begin with this one! Sean Hill is an exceptional human being, and a complete joy to work with. From the first moment we met, he made me feel so welcomed and comfortable. Sean does an amazing job at taking someone’s artistic vision and enhancing it into something better than they could have imagined. The actual process was a lot of fun, but a lot of work… long hours and late nights!
Miranda ~ When do you know you’ve finished writing songs for a particular album?
Landry: When I’m putting together an album, I kind of have an idea of what needs to be included to create a well-rounded collection of songs… but when I write, instead of trying to write a particular song that the album might be missing, I usually just writing what I’m feeling. So while sometimes it may take a bit longer to complete the picture, the songs reflect a more honest side of me.
Miranda ~ What do you hope to achieve with music?
Landry: I just want people to be able to relate to the things that I write and bring them a little hope and comfort through my songs.
Miranda ~ What are you most grateful for generally and right now?
Landry: I am grateful that God is allowing me to do what I love to do.
I am so grateful that He loves me in spite of the person that I am.
I am grateful for my family, friends, and all the amazing people God has placed in my life.
…and, I think I’m going to leave that there because I could go on forever.
THIS or THAT (The Fun Questions!)
Coffee or Tea? Tea… every day. Every time.
Gym or Outdoor? I have a love/hate relationship with the gym & only love for the outdoors.
T-shirt or Collar shirt? T-Shirt. Actually all the shirts.
Sneakers or Boots? Hardest question of the entire interview. PASS.
Running or Walking? Walking
Juice or Smoothie? Smoothie
Music or Books? Music. Music. Music.
Summer or Spring? Summer sports, but spring weather!
Rain or Snow? Rain
Blazer or Leather Jacket? Leather Jacket
About Landry Cantrell
Landry is a pastor’s son and worship leader from Hanford, California who has dedicated his whole life to pursuing ministry through music. Growing up around his dad’s recording studio and singing in church from a young age, music has always been woven into Landry Cantrell’s life. As a teenager, he became serious about his music, writing and recording at a prolific pace. Before now, Landry has recorded and released several albums, composed and produced a full-length musical, and earned a Master’s Certificate in Music Technology and Production from Berklee College of Music. Now he is looking forward to sharing new music in the coming months with his first DREAM Records release, Projections.