Not only are you going to want to see this, you’re going to want to hear about it too! Syntext, a band comprised of two, releases their first over music video on New Year’s Day.
Written By: C.J. Shaleesh & JB
Bandmates Alexander Long and Charlie MacCall debut video, Runaway, isn’t the only eye-catching aspect about the duo, their attention-grabbing background story and the motive behind the new song are just as appealing.
Long, the vocalist of the group is a queer person of color who is musically trained in vocals, the saxophone, the clarinet, and the piano. Although Long has skills behind the keys, it’s bandmember MacCall, a gay transgender man, who is the instrumental sound of the group.
Both have a creative hand in the songwriting process with MacCall producing the music and predominantly writing the lyrics while Long pens a finishing touch and adds a smooth Jazz, R&B and Pop flavor.
“I like pop as a format because of its clarity. [And] I like jazz because it’s much freer and nothing like pop music hahaha. R&B feels so smooth, so sexy, and makes life more colorful like jazz, but it’s like pop so you can get the message,” explained Long.
The dynamic duo met five years ago on OkCupid and shared a blissful 5-year relationship before the romance fizzled dry. However, even though the relationship changed the music always remained.
As musical partners, these 2 are a match made in heaven. Together they developed a hybrid sound that is experimental and completely their own, which they describe as a “smooth jazz sound in a pop format with electronic elements. It’s like funky meets anime.”
It all ties into their group’s name, Syntext, which was first coined by bandmate Long. “The ‘Syn’ is derived from the word synergy,” explained the front man. “’Text’ [a reference to subtext] is the meaning beneath the words.” All of which is represented in their new Runaxway song.
For the video, Long and MacCall wanted to develop a masterpiece that not only was authentically representative of the LGBTQ+ community but also resonated with the intentions of the song.
“Runaway was inspired by the trans community of color highlighting the struggles some may face when confronted with opposition,” explained Long. “[It’s] an anthem for anyone who has struggled to be accepted or feels like they’ll never belong, especially for LGBT folks who face rejection from their parents,” added MacCall.
The young lady in their impactful new video is a trans activist and author who’s no stranger to the plight of the trans community. Aryah Lester’s life as a proud transwoman wasn’t always rainbows and sunshine. And still to this day as a respected member of the community, she battles transphobia while lending her voice to the gay community at-large.
The 2 bandmates wanted the video to tell a story that most often isn’t seen and shared with the public, a story of trans abuse and neglect. But they wanted it to also convey a message of strength and beauty for trans youth to aspire too. One that would give them courage and motivation to live in their truth while enduring the struggle.
“[The video] is meant to show that if you’re in a situation where you’re suffering, you can change it,” a concerned MacCall proclaimed while telling us the story of a young trans girl who was struggling with acceptance from her family and peers. “[It’s a] song that she could sing to herself while she turned her high school hallways into a runway.”
“Aryah is the runaway [sort of] speaking. She’s the star we had hoped to find [when] we put out a casting call and weeded through a lot of people,” explained MacCall. “As soon as we saw a video of her walking, we knew she was the one.”
Runaway is just the beginning for the impassioned duo. Both of these 2 talented musicians have big aspirations for Syntext. MacCall wants to continue on with empowering youth by “traveling around the world playing music while setting an example for youth that feels different.”
Long has dreams of bringing the band mainstream while still respecting the quality of their work. “I want Syntext to be as big as our fanbase will allow us while still being authentically ourselves,” he assured us.
Here’s a chance to meet Syntext in person. If you happen to be in New York on January 25, 2019, you can catch the group live at their Chelsea Music Hall performance.
To book or reach out to Syntext personally, you can email them at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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