LOS ANGELES, C.A. (LOOTPRESS) – Cris Gunther, C-GUN, is a singer, songwriter, dancer, producer, actor, writer and Beckley native currently residing in Los Angeles, California.
Since co-winning the Inaugural Randy Jackson, Babyface, Kenny G and Walter Afanasieff talent competition, ISINA, in 2018, Gunther has been working on his single, “Compass Love”, which will be featured on the artist’s newest and most ambitious album, “C-GUN’S BEATIFIC: THE WEDDING OF HEAVEN AND HELL.”
Gunther recently shared with Lootpress the inspiration behind his newest two-part single and the struggles he faced while writing an album during a pandemic.
Gunther says growing up in Beckley and living there until he was 16 unequivocally shaped and inspired his music. Raised in a well-known musical family with friends who were equally as musical, Gunther remembers summer BBQs filled with the sweet sounds of soul, pop, and funk music.
“Those summer cookouts of my youth growing up had the most pronounced influence on my personal music tastes,” he shared.
As Gunther’s musical palette grew throughout the years, he found himself in the spotlight. First by co-winning the ISINA competition and then by winning the 2018 Hollywood Music Award for Best Message Song/ Social Impact.
Gunther says it was during the ISINA competition that he wrote “Compass Love,” as well as “Desert Bloom,” a song on the album dedicated to his brother who lost his battle with cancer in 2015.
Calling these two tracks the “roots and seeds” of his album, Gunther says he was ready to complete his record.
Then COVID hit.
Gunther described the already isolating nature of Los Angeles, which was only magnified by the looming pandemic and country-wide lockdowns.
While this isolation forced Gunther to reflect on aspects of his life that he didn’t want to face, he says it greatly impacted that message of his album.
“The pandemic was challenging on so many levels: emotionally, mentally and spiritually. I had a lot of time to think and reflect on my life and my dreams and the relationships that I had,” Gunther said. “There were a lot of realizations that didn’t feel very good and were painful, but it forced me to confront a lot of things that I had put on the back burner because I wasn’t fully ready to stand my ground. I went on an evolving, truth-seeking quest because of the pandemic. It was a gift that enabled me to buckle down and pour all that into the music and the album.”
Saying that he hopes the album will take listeners on a journey- if not a spiritual one than a personal one- of purpose finding, truth-seeking and self-love, Gunther revealed that he didn’t want to give too much of the album’s meaning away.
“I want listeners to use their imagination and allow it to mean something specific for them. If I tell you exactly what the meaning is, then that won’t happen.”
Instead, Gunther focused on “Compass Love,” a coming of age, self-love song in two parts.
Compass Love Part 1 is a pop, progressive rock, electro version of the song designed to make the listener feel as if they’re in a live audience. Part 2, written and performed during the ISINA competition, is a pop, funk, soul, 80s dance version.
Gunther says the biggest inspiration behind “Compass Love” is his personal journey to self-love.
“That’s what my whole life is about right now,” Gunther shared. “From my musical and artistic projects to my personal relationships to my professional life, it all goes back to self-love. That is the truth I’m seeking right now and that I’m trying to practice.”
Regardless of whether someone listens to a single song or the whole album, Gunther hopes his music gives listeners a boost of inspiration, courage, motivation, strength and perseverance, ultimately leading them to a place of enlightenment and peace.
Part 1 and Part 2 of “Compass Love” will be released on Friday, August 6, 2021, alongside their accompanying music videos. “C-GUN’S BEATIFIC: THE WEDDING OF HEAVEN AND HELL” is expected to release this fall.
Visit crisgunther.com for more information on these upcoming releases and Gunther’s story.