One of the most widely debated issues in America is gun control. In an effort to spark conversation, Fat Mermaid — two theater heads, Braxton Molinaro and Jonathan Sokolow — have assembled a solid roster of talent to help create Guns: The Album. The project is neither pro-gun or anti-gun; rather, it’s intention is to expose the many sides to this contentious epidemic.
The cast features Emmy award winner Eric McCormack (Will & Grace), Tony nominee Terrence Mann (Les Miserables, Sense 8), Oscar nominee Tess Harper (Breaking Bad), Frances Fisher (Titanic), Mykal Kilgore (The Wiz), Jonathan Lipnicki (Stewart Little), Jack Laufer (Madmen), Ivan Hernandez (Devious Maids), Joanna Jones (Hairspray Live!) and more. The pop/rock concept album will be available across all major music platforms on June 22, but Billboard is premiering the track “Stranger Times” today (June 12). The song is performed by Daniel Emond and Michelle Armstrong Lauria. We also talked to the co-creators, Molinaro and Sokolow, about the project.
“Guns is an attempt at making a contentious conversation more accessible, more specific — and by using music as our medium, we hope more infectious,” said Molinaro. “Our objective was to tap into these firearm fueled conversations from all angles, without limiting the genre or story elements. We used performers whom some may recognize, but built it mostly of those they may not. We were only inclusive of authentic talent and truly passionate people. It’s a new kind of listening experience that rallies for a reason.”
Sokolow added: “With Guns, we wanted to create something political and purposeful that people could groove to, so that folks will listen first with their ears, then with their brains, and hopefully, eventually with their hearts. It’s an attempt to make big ideas more bite sized, and to expand the American gun debate into something more than just pro-gun or anti-gun. This is an awareness piece, aimed at getting factual conversations rolling, no matter where on the political spectrum you land.”
The album can be preordered at gunsthealbum.com. Check out the trailer for the project below:
The album artwork was created by artist Ian Sklarsky.