Burned out, Brent was on a three year break from music when he met his wife, Erica. It didn't take long for them to figure out they had a common passion for music. On one of their first dates, Brent decided to sing an early version of "Only You.” He barely got through the song before realizing his spark for music had returned and it was stronger than ever. That night Brent told Erica that he always dreamed of doing something bigger with music, to which she replied, "So what are you going to do about it?” Since then, there is rarely a moment that Brent is without a guitar; ironically, it's usually Erica’s Taylor guitar.
Whether in their home studio or while traveling, Brent and Erica spend countless hours creating powerful songs, mostly grounded in the themes of love and finding each other. “We were sitting on a couch in our hotel room in LA and Brent randomly said he wanted to write a song about the first time he saw me. About 45 minutes later, the song ‘I Found You’ was done,” said Erica. However, there are some exceptions to the theme of love. While on their honeymoon, 'The Bachelor' was being filmed at their resort. As they were watching the camera crew follow the bachelor around, they looked at each other and said, "Our life is like a TV show! There should be cameras that follow us around, people wouldn't believe half the things that go down!" And like that, "TV Show" was born.
Their self titled debut album, Brent Maez, released four singles, with Run to You and I Found You ultimately being considered for three Grammy Awards in 2017. Their alternative country sound is solidly delivered, with an appealing style that infuses catchy melodies, meaningful lyrics and passion into each track, only to cause you to hit the play button again and again. Erica’s vocals layer beautifully with Brent's, providing a harmony that makes you fall in love with, and believe, the lyrics.
Brent is a true entertainer at heart that will inspire even the most introverted souls to sing along. In addition to playing just about any song that will instantly get a crowd excited, Brent also has a knack for spontaneously making up fun songs on the fly that fans quickly eat up and join in on. This knack was fine tuned in what Brent calls the “Kitchen Concert Series,” the spontaneous kitchen concerts at the Maez house that include fog, laser lights, a disco ball and of course, all cranked up!
“When I started in the music business, it was tough for me to put a finger on describing my style. Growing up, my inspiration was a blend of folk and Americana meets pop and rock; channeling James Taylor but belting out Tom Petty. I loved everything from the Eagles, Garth Brooks, Bruce Springsteen, Journey, Elvis, Don McLean, 38 Special, INXS, Bob Dylan, Jim Croce, Cat Stevens, U2, John Mellencamp, Chicago, Poison, Michael W. Smith, Colin Raye and Guns and Roses. Today, I guess you would call my genre alternative country(ish),” said Brent.
Brent’s introduction to “playing” music was in middle school. “I will never forget being forced to play guitar in music class. It hurt my fingers and I just didn’t really get it. In junior high school, I picked up percussion and played the snare drum in the school band. When I turned 14, something woke up inside of me and I suddenly became inspired to write songs, sing and play guitar. So I went to my neighborhood music store and traded in my snare drum for my first guitar, an Alvarez that I still love to play today.”
Music roots run deep in Brent’s family. “My dad played the clarinet and also sang and wrote poetry. My grandfather played the guitar and played in a local band in Chicago. I remember thinking his guitar collection in the basement was so cool.”
As a teenager, Brent's parents took him to his first “public” gig at the Irish Mill, a local neighborhood bar. His Chicagoland high school was famous for producing great artists, like Tom Morello, the Grammy award winning guitarist for Rage Against the Machine, Adam Jones, the Grammy award winning guitarist for Tool, and the legendary actor Marlon Brando.
His fan base took a giant leap while attending college, performing at fraternities, bars, private parties and benefits nearly four nights a week, gaining the attention of several record labels along the way. While he almost always performed solo, he did have a band called The Distance for a brief time.
Brent has performed hundreds of shows nationally and internationally, for crowds of all sizes, whether at clubs, private parties, corporate events, charity events, festivals, weddings or on the radio or television. He has also been a popular opening act for touring bands, including Cincinnati's Blessid Union of Souls, seconds before their debut album “Home” was declared “gold” in 1995. Brent led the house band for FOX Cincinnati’s TV show, Cincinnality, and was a judge for Cincinnati’s WARM 98 Radio Idol.
For 10 years Brent has been an integral voting member of The Recording Academy, participating in selecting who will be awarded each GRAMMY every year. Brent can also be found on Facebook at www.facebook.com/brentmaez.