With their first single a certifiable hit, the Eagles' Brent Celek and his R&B protege, Guordan Banks, tackle some (not so) tough questions.
Before setting out on his own with the help of label partner Brent Celek, Philly’s own Gourdan Banks penned songs for R&B stars like John Legend. His first song, “Keep You in Mind,” scored a number-one spot on the Billboard charts.
How did you two meet? Brent Celek: It was six years ago at Sigma Sound studios. I had been there many times in the off-season to hear new music. Guordan Banks: I was a songwriter at the time, writing for another artist. Brent heard my voice and thought I should perform the song myself. BC: I lost my mind—it was so different from anything I had heard. We became friends and that turned into us starting a label, Bank On It Entertainment.
What’s it like working together? GB: Brent’s very hands-on. He even spent long nights in the studio while I worked. BC: Guordan and I think alike and that’s key to a solid partnership.
You grew up in Philly, Guordan? GB: I get my grit from Philly. I was raised in the heart of North Philly with eight siblings. My mother was a minister so we spent a lot of time at church; my musical background is rooted in gospel.
Brent, how do you juggle football, two restaurants (Bop, Prime Stache), and music? BC: Football is my main thing. But instead of wasting my free time, I have chosen the route of entrepreneurship. It hasn’t been easy but the lessons I’ve learned are priceless.
Sum up the new album, Unpopular, in a few words. GB: Love, hope, freedom, and unconditional soul.