Tertulien and The 4-3-2: LA’s New Take on Motown


It’s rare when you can point to the next hot music act before it even debuts. But when the right combination of experience, technical ability, and vision come together, you can anticipate that the product will stand out.

And so, without further ado, introducing Tertulien and The 4-3-2, a Soul and R&B band that produces a modern Motown sound that is as danceable as it is musically sophisticated.

At the helm of the Los Angeles-based group is Tertulien Thomas, a music industry veteran who began his professional music career after studying voice at Juilliard. Even before that, the Connecticut-native founded and directed the first youth choir at his church at 18—and his voice bares out the influence of a gospel upbringing. From one measure to the next, he can go from a delicate, shivering croon to a brassy, commanding cry.

Tertulien and The 4-3-2 have spent the last 3 years assembling themselves and working out a repertoire in the living rooms of various band members. Now, with the entire band rehearsed and ready to perform, the group will debut this Wednesday, June 28th at downtown Los Angeles’s The Edison.

You can check out the concert info for the free event here.

On the eve of his performance, we sat down and asked Tertulien a few questions…

Five questions…

Did you play an instrument as a kid?

Yes! I played many instruments. My first instrument was violin and I absolutely hated it. I was in the 5th grade and my dad forced it on me because he wanted me to be like one of the child prodigies he saw playing violin on TV. At that age, I was so un-interested in classical music but definitely into Motown and music of the ‘60s.

What’s your favorite song of the year?

I would have to say “Cranes in the Sky” by Solange. That sexy ‘70s bass line has got me by the hook.

What advice would you give your younger self?

I would tell my younger self to be yourself and don’t let anyone dictate what your life should be. Deep down inside you already know who you are. Honor that always.

What’s the last piece of advice you ignored?

I was advised by my Sister not to come out to parents because they wouldn’t handle the news well. I’m glad to say that she was so wrong!

Who do you admire more than anyone?

My Mother. I admire her compassion, strength and wisdom. Mom is still my superhero.

About The Author

Samuel Braslow is an associate editor at FourTwoNine Magazine, and covers current events and politics for the website.

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