Three Men Perform Soulful Beatles Classic In Empty Church And Their Rendition Is Like Nothing Before
Tune into this timeless tenor trio from Utah as they soothe listeners with a captivating rendition of Paul McCartney’s “Let It Be.” And be prepared to meet The Beatles all over again with this mesmerizing recording captured from multiple empty cathedrals. It won’t be long before you see how these impactful musicians, known as the group GENTRI, really found a way to take this sad song and make it even better.
Bradley Quinn Lever, Casey Elliott and Brad Robins combined their terrific tenor talents to form the backbone of GENTRI, The Gentleman Trio. By joining forces with producer and composer Stephen Nelson, these three musical artists transcend both time and space to foster seriously soulful soundscapes. With unbridled originality, they classify their genre as “Cinematic Pop.”
GENTRI clearly took religion and its importance into consideration when performing at three sacred sites simultaneously. Being stationed at separate pews instilled a surreal ambiance. The church settings provide a touching spiritual angle. Suddenly, the group’s song selection makes perfect sense. In addition to the sanctuary’s chill-inducing acoustical resonance, it’s a particularly poignant venue for a composition that opens with the well-known lyrics, “When I find myself in times of trouble, Mother Mary comes to me speaking words of wisdom.”
Surprisingly, a lot of fans are unaware that the song’s original lyricist, McCartney, is actually referencing his mother in the lyrics and not necessarily Mary, mother of Jesus. Although she passed away when he was only 14-years-old, she remained a positive influence throughout his life and has inspired arguably one of the most memorable songs in recent memory.
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As McCartney explained in Marlo Thomas’ book “The Right Words at the Right Time,” he had a dream during a notably rocky time in 1968 where his maternal ancestress calmed him down with the reassuring mantra that became this tune’s title and chorus let it be.
“It was late in the Beatles’ career and we had begun making a new album, a follow-up to the White Album.’ As a group we were starting to have problems,” McCartney said in Thomas’ book. “I think I was sensing the Beatles were breaking up, so I was staying up late at night & the way a lot of people were at the time. I was really living and playing hard.”
Although the masterpiece was conceived during tumultuous studio sessions for the band’s self-titled record, also known as the White Album, it was held to be issued on a later record in 1970, which was eponymously named “Let It Be.” It ended up being The Beatles’ final studio album and one of the most controversial albums in rock music’s history.
Part of the reason the record remains so controversial is thanks to record producer Phil Spector, whom many Beatles fans universally revile. As Richie Unterberger explains in his AllMusic review of the album, “Let It Be” was mostly a collection of tracks that were recorded in early 1969 before “Abbey Road.” John Mendelsohn at Rolling Stone adds that the expectation was that the album would be “full of gems (the band had) never gotten around to polishing beyond recognition.”
A Controversial Album
“Well, it was too good to be true somebody apparently just couldn’t Let It Be, with the result that they put the load on their new friend P. Spector, who in turn whipped out his orchestra and choir and proceeded to turn several of the rough gems on the best Beatle album in ages into costume jewelry,” Mendelsohn writes.
Mendelsohn and plenty of angry fans like him criticize Spector for what they consider his heavy-handed post-production work, such as his use of “hideously cloying strings” and his choice to include “a ridiculous choir” on “The Long and Winding Road.”
With that said, not everyone hates the album, especially thanks to the record’s title track. In his review of the album, Untergerberg is softer on the criticism, ultimately giving the record a stellar rating of four and a half stars out of five.
“Although most of the album, then, has a live-in-the-studio feel, the main problem was that the material wasn’t uniformly strong, and that the Beatles themselves were in fairly lousy moods due to inter-group tension. All that said, the album is on the whole underrated, even discounting the fact that a sub-standard Beatles record is better than almost any other group’s best work,” Unterberger writes. “McCartney in particular offers several gems: the gospelish “Let It Be,” which has some of his best lyrics & As flawed and bumpy as it is, it’s an album well worth having, as when the Beatles were in top form here, they were as good as ever.”
GENTRI’s Take On A Classic
The title track was an immediate success, hitting the charts at number six upon its release and eventually making it to number one. Since then, the iconic song has been covered countless times by heavy-hitting musicians like Aretha Franklin, Ray Charles, JP Cooper and, as of 2017, GENTRI.
When life is too much to handle, all you need is some love from GENTRI. If they seem familiar, it might be because you recognize them from past headlines. Astute viewers have probably deduced that they are the same gentlemen responsible for the viral sensation of “Dare,” which made uplifting waves by prominently showcasing a disabled ballerina who refused to give up the art after having her foot amputated.
Across the vast expanse of the internet, few videos compare to this stunning cover of one of pop music’s most influential tracks. But don’t take our word for it. Check it out for yourself. You’ll wish that you had seen it yesterday. Luckily, you can now view it any time at all, so there’s no reason not to aim for seven days a week.
Although no guitars gently wept, you’ve got to get this performance into your life. Their harmonies are smoother than savoy truffles, and there’s no mystery to GENTRI’s magical tour.
If you end up liking GENTRI’s work, the trio of singing gentleman came out with a record in 2019 titled “Noel,” which features a series of Christmas-themed original songs and covers from “Joy to the World” to “Do You Hear What I Hear.” The supergroup has also continued to update fans with new music, posting live ZOOM performances of tracks on their Facebook page.
What do you think of this chilling rendition of a classic Beatles song? All across the universe, nothing compares to this clip, so be sure to pass this on to music and Beatles fans alike!