This past year has been a big one for Yellowknife-born singer Warren Dean Flandez. From releasing his latest gospel-infused album, Eternally Grateful, to receiving a coveted Juno Award nomination, the Vancouver-based artist has seen much success over the course of the last twelve months. Through one achievement after the next, the singer has remained humble and passionate about his work, his projects, and his album’s message throughout it all. “It’s been amazing. This album has really been a passion project, so it was something that I really did for myself—there wasn’t a label attached or anything like that, and I kind of started from the ground up.”
A passion project indeed, one that Flandez says is inspired both by the world around him and by the birth of his son. Wanting to construct an album with a message that was both accessible to mainstream audiences and also carried weight in the stories it told, Eternally Grateful is a true representation of the singer himself. Having grown up singing in a gospel choir as a child, the journey back into the gospel music genre felt like coming full circle for the artist. “For me, I really wanted for this album to be able to put out music that really resonated with me and was more an accurate snapshot of what I believed in and my life and what I was going through at that time.” This album and genre, the artist says, provided more artistic freedom and creative liberty than his previous pop/R&B position, where music trends and popular opinion held sway. “This was really a chance for me to create something real and honest.”
The singer has, as of late, been promoting the album alongside performing at festivals and participating in other collaborations along the way. One of these inspiring partnerships is the singer’s upcoming guest appearance with Vancouver’s own Good Noise Vancouver Gospel Choir at their Soul Gospel Two!—a performance that Flandez himself claims is a “dream come true”. Having been a fan of Good Noise and their choir director, Gail Suderman, for quite some time, the artist jumped at the chance to collaborate with the highly-talented group. Inspired by their message, sound, and creativity, Flandez says he cannot wait to perform with the choir at the beautiful Christ Church Cathedral in Downtown Vancouver. “Gail’s vision and the songs they’ve selected are just incredible, so I can’t wait to be immersed in that sound.”
So what’s next for the singer? Well, in addition the Good Noise Vancouver Gospel Choir guest appearance, it looks like another album may also be in the works. “I’m just starting the writing process and the recording process as well,” the artist says, adding that he’s slowly starting to move forward with this new exciting project at hand. Although he cannot provide a specific release date yet, Flandez is excited about continuing his music with a purpose. In the meantime, the singer is eager to continue promoting Eternally Grateful, and presenting its message of positivity, hope, and life itself in an honest and passionate way.
Good Noise Vancouver Gospel Choir’s Soul Gospel Two! takes place June 3, 2017 at Christ Church Cathedral. Get your tickets here.
Jasmine Proctor is a writer, theatre-fanatic, and recent BA graduate from Simon Fraser University, majoring in Communications and English Literature. Jasmine is a self-proclaimed Shakespeare fangirl, part-time poet, and a not-so-secret lover of K-pop. She is thrilled to work with Artslandia and cannot wait to see what performance she can write about next.
Warren Dean Flandez describes his music simply as “songs with purpose”. But with an EP that debuted at number two last year on the iTunes Inspirational Charts Top 100, this Yellowknife born vocalist has rediscovered his church roots, reignited his faith and found solace in creating inspirational Canadian gospel music with his anticipated full length album Eternally Grateful.