An artist with a journey, the Singer/Songwriter Doc Gunn releases his soulful folk album, 'Rainbows & Snowflakes.'
Born in Big Bear, California, Doc Gunn has seen the trials and tribulations of becoming an artist as he finally graces Hollywood with his 'punk-rock Bob Dylan' sound.
Blending the 70s rock 'n roll era with country/bluegrass twang and a hint of folk, Doc Gunn always finds different ways to bring nostalgic music to the present-day stage. With his recent album 'Rainbows & Snowflakes,' we can hear this mix of legendary artists all to create this powerful brainchild being Doc Gunn performing his many different folk-approached tracks.
Jumping right into the 'Rainbows & Snowflakes' album, Doc Gunn starts us off with the intro track "Lovers Road." Twangy electric guitar and a steady mid-tempo beat send this track into a well-defined country space. As Doc Gunn's vocals begin delivering heartfelt lyrics, we can hear why he's referred to as 'punk-rock Bob Dylan.' Although this track mostly resonates with folk-rock and country, Doc Gunn's vocals are so dynamic that they can blend with many different genres. While he sings about losing a lover, Doc Gunn exudes this confidence where he clearly isn't bothered to move forward. An optimistic and relatable intro track, we've already lifted off into this nostalgic and warm space.
Bright acoustic guitar strumming peels open the next track, "Hit the Ground Runnin'." An upbeat and lively track through toe-tapping percussion and striking electric power chords. Doc Gunn's layered vocals and warm female background vocals add vast depth to this song, while he sings an optimistic story of knowing you're on the right path. He creates this anthemic and groovy story-like track all within two sweet minutes. What keeps the track up and running is the textured percussion that keeps our feet moving, not to mention the hi-fi electric guitar complementing Doc Gunn's vocals, almost mimicking his delivery, we've "Hit the Ground Runnin'" after a locked in listen.
More of a country/bluegrass sound swell up the next track, "The Burrito Song." A beautifully put mid-tempo track featuring many different string instruments, accompanied by the ol' reliable acoustic and electric guitar. A variety of melodies exude from these soulful string instrumentals, while Doc Gunn joins in with his fun-loving lyricism. Singing of a man making love to his burrito, Doc Gunn creates this playful space by adding lyrics of daydreaming of the warmth down south and overseas. With many different dynamic levels to this song, Doc Gunn emphasizes different sections of the track, leaving us thinking over how we'd rather be touring the world instead of touring our neighborhoods.
Within the first ten seconds of the next track "Vows," Doc Gunn displays this haunting and heart-wrenching atmosphere. With layered vocals once again and a downtempo acoustic guitar humming away with soul, we can feel the pain and passion that fueled this track. Added harmonica joins the saddened track, adding this nostalgic and soulful feel. Doc Gunn sings a heartfelt story while apologizing for the pain he's caused a past lover and expresses his remorse for letting her tears fall. The heavy acoustic guitar strumming takes this track to a bluesy approach, especially with the melodic electric guitar around the bridge. Doc Gunn hits us straight in the feels with this heavy-hearted song, and we're loving the range he's added to the album thus far.
Sole acoustic guitar makes up the instrumentals for the next track, "Hard Headed Blues." While acting like somewhat of an interlude through the track's duration and poetic approach, Doc Gunn expels these original and unique melodies through his guitar and satin-soft vocals. A very blues-inspired track, Doc sings about someone who continually gives him the blues (and vice versa). His lyrics are sweet and simple; he vocalizes a confusing type of love where pain and passion seem to co-exist. The fact that nothing but a single acoustic guitar accompanies Doc Gunn makes the track even more personal and sincere.
With another downtempo and natural blues/folk song "Lovers Lane," we're set down a passionate and dreamy path. Have we mentioned that Doc Gunn's layered vocals can pass as a mixture of Bob Dylan and The Beatles? You can purely hear this through the psychedelic approach with "Lovers Lane." Singing a tale of wanting to rule lovers lane with a significant other, we're captured in this daydream through the animated folk instrumentals. The sweet percussion keeps the track at a steady pace while allowing us to get down with the melodic string solos. A very catchy and light tune that ignites our dreams, we're loving the contrast between each individual song so far.
Channeling the Bob Dylan inspired side of Doc Gunn with the next song "Dr. Strange Love," he ravages through this high energy track with his inner spunk that sparks a substantial fire. With uptempo acoustic guitar strumming and supporting electric guitar for the melody, the track fires through with an upbeat story. Singing passionately about someone who can't seem to change his ways and gets hooked on the past, Doc Gunn emphasizes that even though this man captures these strange qualities, he'll always be loved by the public. For the last minute or so, Doc Gunn slows down the tempo and creates this introspective and contemplative atmosphere with thought-provoking lyrics and transcendent instrumentals.
Psychedelia seems to be a running theme throughout this album. With the next track "Ode to the Wanderer," Doc Gunn jumps in with passionate vocals filtered to perfection. Heavy acoustic guitar melodies keep this track at a very natural and genuine feel, especially once we hear Doc Gunn's heartfelt message. Singing towards someone who's captured his love, Doc Gunn sings such a sincere message of being grateful for someone even though they're not at home as much as they'd like to be. While Doc Gunn sings his "Ode to the Wanderer," we're met with this celestial instrumental that transports us into our dreams. Doc Gunn has pulled us in with his sincere songwriting, and we're looking forward to sticking around for the long haul.
Bringing back the country/bluegrass roots with the next song "Flash," Doc Gunn portrays such passionate melodies and beautiful transitions from major to minor. The instrumentals are incredibly placid and calming, especially with the added bassline and bright acoustic guitar. Doc Gunn sings a hefty story of having his life flash before his eyes, and not being completely alive until after this life-threatening experience. His vocals are so mesmerizing and natural, without any filters or effects, Doc Gunn explains this worrisome tale in a remarkably unhindered way. Pulling on our heartstrings with each melody and lyric he sings, Doc Gunn has captured us in such a deep space.
Reaching the last track of the album with "Rings of Saturn," Doc Gunn decided to keep this song as pure as possible with a sole acoustic guitar and melodic electric guitar in the background. Serving us more of a unifying feeling with his lyricism, Doc Gunn explains a situation where someone's head is in the clouds and how getting their act together might be the best outcome. We can easily relate to this character that Doc Gunn is singing about, as we all have many complications in life that take us through unexpected paths. This midtempo piece serves as a perfect outro track, as it lets the listener leave the album thinking about how we can improve ourselves.
A truly remarkable album, Doc Gunn's "Rainbows & Snowflakes" took us on an adventure through time and space, yet brought us back down to earth with his honest lyricism. We hope that you'll enjoy the contrast between all ten songs as much as we did.
We're heavily relating to the concepts you've tied into your album "Rainbows & Snowflakes." What initially inspired you to create this well-rounded album?
These songs are a build-up. They are pretty much my entire 20’s wrapped in a crossroads or quantum choice that one makes in this human experience. Love can be flowers and pedals, but it can also be thorns and briar. The culmination of these songs coming together and cohesively existing as “Rainbows & Snowflakes”, has honestly been the strangest turn of events And happy blessings. I’m quite certain there are time travelers working on my behalf that helped birth this into the universe. The inspiration is from experiencing life, love, money, energy, and having the strength to not be discouraged when everything falls out the bottom and seemingly into place.
There are many songs within Doc Gunn's album "Rainbows & Snowflakes" that tell their own stories. Did you have a particular theme you wanted to portray with the entire album?
Quite honestly I had been writing and performing these songs and had scratch demos For years but finally, I managed to pull together KristinaX, Dylan Martin and Dr. Ew to lay these songs down in a big brass bed and really hone in. You know When you write a song, you can change the verse or the chorus. The melody stays the same and the turnarounds familiar. You can play that song for years, but when all is said and done, the song is laid down on its pillow, you release it into the world. That is the ultimate satisfaction of the reward as an artist. The theme is art through expression and completion and sharing it with others who resonate with the vibe and tune into the frequency.
Many personal and vulnerable songs make up Doc Gunn's album "Rainbows & Snowflakes." Which song do you feel stands out as your personal favorite, and what makes you relate to the song so much?
Rings of Saturn hit me the hardest. Because I’m not talking to anyone but myself in that.
For listeners who are hearing Doc Gunn's work for the first time, what can they learn about you from your album "Rainbows & Snowflakes"?
That it’s okay to love and be loved, just stay sweet, be the change you wish to speak, and speak the change you wish to be and have the guts to take action! And also that it’s Rock N Roll.
What has been keeping you inspired throughout 2020?
Rainbows & Snowflakes!