The four walls of a conservative church are where a young Blake Trent got his start in music. “My initial lessons and songs that I learned were hymns. Even down to my musical style, that has definitely influenced even how I think about music itself,” he remembered. While got his start there, he found his voice in musical theatre and later thanks to bands you’d find on the Warped Tour bill. Which is where we’re starting…
Kendra: When did you decide to head down a more secular path?
Blake Trent: Once I got into high school, I really hit my emo phase. Dealing with a bunch of stuff I didn’t know how to deal with, I lost myself within music. That meant a lot of rock, alternative, and classic specifically. When I started writing music, I didn’t want anything I wrote to be labeled as “Christian” music. Specifically because I know so many people have been hurt by Christians. So the message of my words would fall on deaf ears, no matter how much they needed to hear it. Also, I feel like there’s a lot more freedom to be real outside of that genre.
Kendra: Can we talk about “I’m Fine” for a second? It was like Hamilton meets reality and I loved it. I often feel like that sentiment, “I’m fine,” is the biggest lie we tell on a day to day basis. Why do you think we’re so used to just waving our truths like that?
Blake Trent: “I’m Fine” is the first thing I ever seriously tracked and reflected a lot of what I had been dealing with up to that point. After listening to a lot of Twenty-One Pilots, TAL, NF, and Linkin Park, I wanted to paint on a lyrical canvas with enough density to get my point across. I think because the question of “how are you doing?” isn’t ever asked as a real question, more as a common conversation opener. We know the other person doesn’t want a real answer into the nitty-gritty of your life where things are going horribly wrong.
In fact, when you do give them the long answer, they get uncomfortable and aren’t really sure what to do with it. “This is my mind, this is my day, and if you can’t handle that truth then I’m sorry to say that I’ve wasted your time and your life, but I know you’re just as broken as I am so…” We’re all really in the same boat pretending we aren’t, and that’s what I’m not ok with.
Kendra: Now onto “Neverland” which showcases a whole other side to your artistry. When you’re performing do you pull from every genre or play it by ear once you see the crowd?
Blake Trent: Bringing my a wide variety of influences all together has proven to be incredibly difficult. I try to keep it diverse since I’ve found that you really don’t know what is going to connect with people. Music itself beyond the lyrics can reach into your soul, and tap into things that I have no way of reaching with words. For some people that happens by a beat, others with a guitar, some with a scream. Since all of those have grabbed me so strongly, I want to pour out my heart in the same way.
Kendra: Which, you have some shows coming up in June in Orlando. How is the music scene there because many think of Orlando as just a tourist destination.
Blake Trent: I like to say that the Orlando scene is the best thing you’ve never heard of. There are so many amazingly talented artists here; Stormfolk, Jordan Foley, and Heather Desanctis. They all create so well, and have shows where you know you’ll see them touring around the country someday, just because the quality is so high. The problem is because most folks just see Orlando as a place to go visit Disney. In the coming years we’ll start to see more and more top quality musicians coming here because of the network of talented people that are already here.
Kendra: Will you be heading out of state come the summer months?
Blake Trent: Yes, actually! I should be playing up in Atlanta soon, dates to be confirmed shortly. Once I have all the details, you can guarantee that that information will be out on my socials as well as the website.