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Mom, Mormon, rock star: Neon Trees drummer Elaine Bradley talks family, faith

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  • FanOfTheSith Vernal, UT
    June 21, 2014 7:55 p.m.

    @ Mayan Fox,

    Good on you and the best of luck on your upcoming band tour.

  • FanOfTheSith Vernal, UT
    June 21, 2014 7:43 p.m.

    You are one of the rare ones within the modern alternative rock music industry. Good for you and job well done in maintaining the balance.

  • Mayan Fox Australia, 00
    June 21, 2014 2:53 p.m.

    This article couldn't come at a better time as our own band in which I perform with my wife starts to hit our straps and with an international tour approaching, the juggle of family (we have 3 kids), Church and our careers can play on our minds. We seem to be making it work thus far and so long as our family doesn't suffer, we can continue to make it work.

  • TWhit Longwood, FL
    June 19, 2014 1:32 p.m.

    Excellent interview. The young lady is an outstanding example and I hope she gets the opportunity to share her wonderful personality, testimony and faith for many years to come. Very refreshing to hear those comments.

  • Tiago Seattle, WA
    June 18, 2014 6:15 p.m.

    Gospel in action. I love this article. Lots of people live the stereotypical mormon suburban life that fits the mold and that's awesome, but lots of others do something a bit different and that's not bad either. Here's a faithful woman magnifying her talents, cooperating with her spouse, raising a family, loving her lgbt friends, and sharing the gospel. She's an inspiration.

  • USAlover Salt Lake City, UT
    June 18, 2014 8:58 a.m.

    Seriously awesome story. I went to the concert the other night and Neon Trees makes great music.

    For those struggling with judging the hearts and intents of others, I suggest re-reading Christ's words in the New Testament along with some kind of mindfulness, awareness study. I'm actually being serious. Just be happy for people, and stop judging. Stop it....

  • sg newhall, CA
    June 17, 2014 11:14 a.m.

    Okay, I just listened to their first video, "First Things First" and I have to admit that one, the sound is hot and cool. The lead singer is fantastic, the lyrics very touching, and did I mention that I cried. A very powerful song. For those who hesitate because of fear in doing what you always wanted to to, stop being afraid, trust your inner self, trust in God (yes, He exists), and DO IT! If necessary, take those initial baby steps, and then allow yourself to stride.

  • mpschmitt Boston, MA
    June 16, 2014 9:13 p.m.

    So I checked out Neon Trees on iTunes to see what their stuff is like, and I've got to say that it left me asking a few of the same questions I had when Mormon Messages did that spot on Brandon Flowers. Here are two great, talented, human beings (Brandon,Elaine) with wonderful testimonies, yet I find myself wishing I could see more of that shining through in the music and lyrics they produce. There are several songs from Neon Trees that I definitely wouldn't play for my children (e.g. Sleeping With My Friend), and, like some work of The Killers, and some of Brandon Flowers' solo work that play like the soundtrack at the Great and Spacious Building. There are so many Christian groups who are unashamed of their convictions, make great interesting music, and use their talent to glorify God (e.g. Kings Kaleidescope, Deas Vail, Switchfoot, TobyMac, Lecrae). Every song doesn't need to be "Jesus Loves Me", but surely we can find a place for poetic expressions that bring the spirit and change hearts and lives while simultaneously rocking out. Why are we here if not to glorify Him? Time is short. Romans 1:16

  • JimmyJackJohnJones Jonestown, TX
    June 16, 2014 3:43 p.m.

    "something sweet about kids from more or less the middle of nowhere getting their little piece of modern rock". That's hilarious. And she better be "firm" in her convictions, because anyone with a clue will see right through them, and call her on them. Dig deeper honey, stay firm!

  • Kjirstin Youngberg Mapleton, UT
    June 13, 2014 3:47 p.m.

    Judgmental people drive me NUTS! Why was Elaine was ASKED to do an "I'm A Mormon" spot? How about to knock down some of the stereotypical "facts" that mothers must be sitting inside a tract house with a child, eating goldfish crackers and playing puzzles in order to parent? How about strolling hand-in-hand with that child along the Champs-Elysees in the afternoon, and sitting on her father's lap, applauding mommy in the evening? Why do so many struggle realizing that what a family, sealed together eternally decides to do is NONE of anybody else's business? THEY work it out.

    Grounded people do just fine pursuing their passions with their God-given talents, and make it to the end without going astray. I can point out hundreds of them. (Just as many drug-addicted church soccer-moms, too.) Would God give a woman a superior talent, and expect her to bury it until she's popped out eight children? Think, people. Then smile and clap. Life is a tough enough journey without those who feel it their duty to be "just a little bit superior" because they fit the "right" pattern.

  • islandboy Honolulu, HI
    June 13, 2014 2:51 p.m.

    I enjoyed the article. Cookie-cutter Mormon? I don't think so.

  • Captain Green Heber City, UT
    June 13, 2014 2:08 p.m.

    I was also in a rock band. The money I earned helped pay for my mission. And since then I've been a Bishop 3 times. One can have an exciting fulfilling life without giving up their standards. Thank you Elaine for being a good person and an example to all!

  • Objectified Richfield, UT
    June 13, 2014 1:43 p.m.

    @ Harold Skill:

    Because she is a convert. A person can grow up in an inactive (or active) Mormon family and be totally away and distance themselves from the Church and all religion. She did and was. She had to eventually become converted in the same way most other typical converts do. She had to come to a personal realization that the path she was on and the things she had in her life at that time weren't bringing her the happiness she desired.

    When someone said some things that caused her to start thinking more seriously about her life and how important God and Christ are in the big scheme of things, she started reading the Bible. Her study eventually led to becoming converted to the gospel that she previously had never been involved with. She then totally changed her life around in a way that eventually took her to BYU and from there to a church mission.

    Don't make assumptions and shortchange the process she went through. She truly is a convert.

  • Harold Skill Ogden, UT
    June 13, 2014 1:19 p.m.

    The only thing about this article that I don't like, is that it tries to portray her as if she is a convert to the Church. She isn't, I don't think...

    She grew up in an LDS family in Logan, went to BYU, and served an LDS mission. She is about as cookie cutter Mormon as you can get. Why is the article trying to suggest she is a convert?

  • Shauna E potomac, MD
    June 13, 2014 1:00 p.m.

    Just saw these guys in Austin, Texas. This girl is an amazing drummer! Loved the music. Tyler is still feeling a need to run commentary on the gay thing...Many of us are Mormon and believe that this is between him and God-- he shouldn't need validation from a bunch of half-drunk strangers applauding in the audience...Move on and just sing--you are so good and that's what we came for!

  • gittalopctbi Glendale, AZ
    June 13, 2014 11:17 a.m.

    Power to her! As a professional musician myself, mostly an educator, I appreciate what she is doing. She's doing what I warn all my students about, that of a life that is not very conducive to family life. But she is figuring it out, or rather perhaps has figured it out. That's great. It's a difficult thing to do, not impossible, but difficult. I'm sure she's just seeing where this takes her, but I love her story and her testimony and commitment to the gospel. I hope for her great success.

  • bikeboy Boise, ID
    June 13, 2014 10:41 a.m.

    Elaine Bradley is obviously a well-grounded Mormon mom rock star!

    Just last night for the first time, I sampled a couple of Neon Trees videos on the YouTube. It was very well executed and slick, but I s'pose I'm just too old to fully appreciate a "refashion(ing of) post-Strokes dance rock into unshakable radio pop." (It's WAY better than a lot of that boom-de-boom the kids listen to nowadays! haha)

    She's right about the Internet being a "deadly place" if you're undecided. WAY too much confusion, contention, and negativity.

    She'll still have Sebastian and Bryce long after Neon Trees CDs are collecting dust in the cut-out bin. (They still make CDs, don't they? And is there still a cut-out bin?)

  • dmcvey Los Angeles, CA
    June 13, 2014 10:25 a.m.

    We need to clear up the idea that the problem is that people think Mormons "hate" gay people. That's really not the issue. The issue is when they support anti-equality laws like Prop 8. There are also issues with what happens to gay Mormons but that doesn't necessarily have the ramifications of supporting these laws.

  • BCA Murrieta, CA
    June 13, 2014 10:22 a.m.

    "stay at home mothers....deserve highest recognition"

    I applaud and recognize the efforts of all parents who love each other and their children. I don't think we need to reserve "high" recognition to only those who parent the way we think they should. Thanks for the article recognizing an amazing couple who have come up with a successful and workable solution to the great life that they have.

  • RanchHand Huntsville, UT
    June 13, 2014 10:21 a.m.

    @Cherilyn Eagar;

    Thanks for the sour grapes.

  • Cherilyn Eagar Holladay, UT
    June 13, 2014 7:33 a.m.

    While I admire anyone who can succeed in a show business career, I also have a realistic perspective of what that means. I have dear friends who have been at the top of the recording charts who are now either no longer with us or nearing their retirement years.

    I have been in the entertainment world myself for years under every union contract for musical theatre - in New York, Dallas and on national tours.

    In the final analysis, it is both quality AND quantity time with children that makes a difference. I cannot emphasize more how important the traditional family is, with a stay at home mother to care for those little children especially while they are small.

    Science is now proving that BOTH parents emit bonding chemicals that these little children recognize that contributes to their stability and emotional well-being from the time they are born. The more they are separated from this chemistry, the more of a deficit is left behind.

    I hope the Deseret News will also print articles of some of the amazing stay at home mothers out there. They deserve highest recognition because they are sacrificing their "best" career years for them.

  • RanchHand Huntsville, UT
    June 13, 2014 6:38 a.m.

    What a cute family.

  • MPayne Las Vegas, NV
    June 12, 2014 11:29 p.m.

    Elaine, thanks for sharing yourself and standing up for important things. Your strength and courage is inspiring to me.
    Godspeed.

  • Flyer St. George, UT
    June 12, 2014 4:28 p.m.

    What a great article! She's a good person, is well grounded, and knows who she is. As a member of the Church, it's nice to have someone like Elaine have the career she has, while at the same time not being ashamed to let everyone know she's a Mormon. I'm sure I speak for many who are proud of her, and wish her and the band only the best.