Brockton born R&B singer Noel Gourdin is getting a second chance to attain his dream of making it big in music with his new album “Fresh: The Definition.”
The Definition — a throwback to soul music — dropped last month but Gourdin has been here before. Just a few short years ago, Gourdin was signed to a major label and had a hit single “The River.” From the outside looking in, things couldn’t have appeared better, but despite his success Gourdin struggled to handle it all.
“At Epic there were all these other artists and all these other people in the room whose voices needed to be heard. I guess my voice wasn’t big enough,” said Gourdin.
When Gourdin sang about “The River” — a feel good tune with velvety vocals — he was reminiscing about summers spent in Pachuta, Miss. with its dirt roads, riverside baptisms and a sweet summer romance. When it was time for the video shoot, Gourdin was filmed walking the streets of Los Angeles instead of strolling the countryside. Creative mismatches like that coupled with disappointing record sales signaled the end of Gourdin and Epic’s relationship.
Though he’s grateful for the time he had at Epic, reaching for fame wasn’t what he thought it would be the first time around. “I went to New York for my deal and I’ve got some harsh memories of my time there. I was sleeping on friend’s couches and stuff. It was gritty. I don’t regret one move though. I believe God lays out our paths,” said Gourdin.
After his record deal fell through, Gourdin gained more than 30 pounds and slipped into a deep depression that only his family’s love and prayers could pull him out of. Now, on the other side of sadness things are looking up for Gourdin. He’s got a new label, a new album.
“I got a brand new start and I’m so excited about this!” he said. “At my new label Mass Appeal Entertainment, it’s like a big family. I feel right at home.”
Gourdin gushes about his fortune.
“Me and my pops used to drive around in his 1971 [Grandville].” We called it the Brown Machine,” Gourdin said. “We listened to Al Green, Otis Redding and Tyrone Davis and I used to recite all that music. I always wanted to make music that made people feel like how that music made me feel.”
Luckily his rapt attention to good music has paid off. His lead single “Beautiful” hit no. 15 on the Urban Adult Contemporary chart and was USA Today’s pick of the week the second week of March.
With live instrumentation and more creative control, “Fresh: The Definition” is a throw back to spirit filled music with a little edge.
But with all of its ups and downs, is Gourdin ready for fame?
“I don’t really think about that,” he explained. “I just want to put the best product out that I can and hopefully fame will follow. I don’t want to make microwave music that’s only hot for a minute. I want to stick around. I put myself inside the music. I feel good.”