Listen On:

  • Apple Podcasts
  • Spotify
  • Apple Podcasts
  • Spotify

Join Pushkin+

Gain access to ad-free versions of 20+ podcasts from the Pushkin library along with exclusive bonus episodes and other member benefits.

Today we are featuring one of the most thrilling new groups in contemporary soul music—Gabriels. And lucky for us, they performed three songs, one of which is still unreleased, live for Broken Record.

Gabriels consists of three very distinct pillars of talent: lead singer Jacob Lusk, who was raised in Compton singing gospel. Keyboardist and producer Ryan Hope, who grew up a lover of dance music in his native UK. And Los Angeles native, Ari Balouzian, who serves as Gabriels’ in-house composer and violinist.

Gabriels’ origin story is as unconventional as their diverse musical backgrounds. In 2016 Ryan Hope and Ari Balouzian were hired to direct and score a commercial with a gospel choir. After hearing the choir director Jacob Lusk sing, a light went off for Ari and Ryan. Over the course of the next couple of years, the trio started to record and release songs independently. In 2021, those songs caught fire online. Sir Elton John said their debut EP was one of the most seminal records he’d heard in the last 10 years.

On today’s episode Rick Rubin sits down with Gabriels to hear how they were able to create a working environment that allowed space for vulnerability and musical exploration. And lead singer Jacob Lusk tells a harrowing story about getting lost in the LA county jail system in an effort to clear his name so he could appear in the finale of American Idol.

You can hear a playlist of some of our favorite songs by Gabriels HERE.

The Hosts

Rick Rubin

In addition to being a podcast host, Frederick Jay “Rick” Rubin is an American record producer and former co-president of Columbia Records. Along with Russell Simmons, he is the co-founder…

Malcolm Gladwell

Malcolm Gladwell is co-founder of Pushkin Industries and host of the hit podcast Revisionist History. He is a journalist, a speaker, and the author of several New York Times bestsellers including The Tipping…

Justin Richmond

Justin Richmond is producer and co-host of the music podcast Broken Record with writer Malcolm Gladwell, New York Times editor Bruce Headlam, and music producer—and Def Jam co-founder—Rick Rubin. Justin…

Bruce Headlam

Bruce Headlam is one of the co-creators of the music podcast Broken Record. He worked at The New York Times for 19 years, including two years running the 50-person Video…