February 9th, 2011 by admin

63 Comments

Marching to Her Own Drum

Marching to Her Own Drum

Elaine Bradley

At A Glance

Elaine Bradley is the drummer for the rock band Neon Trees, which released their first full length album, Habits, in 2010. Their first single “Animal” has climbed to #13 on the Billboard Hot 100 and #1 on the Alternative Rock Chart. Elaine discusses her journey towards spiritual honesty as a rebellious child and then as a missionary in Germany and now as a musician fulfilling her life’s artistic passions.

How did you get started in music?

I’m the youngest of seven kids so I always had older siblings playing music. At a very early age I was exposed to cool music like Led Zeppelin and Depeche Mode. We enjoyed singing as a family, especially all of the siblings, and we used to sing Depeche Mode harmonies while doing the dishes. One of my earliest musical memories was from kindergarten. I remember sitting on the bus staring out of the window and singing to myself “You’re The Inspiration” by Chicago. I had an older brother who I really looked up to. I thought he was the coolest thing on earth. When I was seven years old he gave me a tape of Led Zeppelin 1. I listened to that tape and loved it in part because he gave it to me but also because it was actually great.

Around this time I got into the idea of drumming, I think maybe because it was aggressive. I was so drawn to it. I would drum wooden spoons and beat on pots and pans, using the pots as the drums and the lids as the cymbals. I always flipped through the Sears catalog to look at the drum sets. I tirelessly begged my parents for drums. When I started band in the sixth grade, my parents got me the Sears drum set. It was a big commitment for my parents, but as far as sets go it was very chintzy. The whole next year I beat that thing to crap. It was destroyed by the end of the year.

NEONTREES

That’s when they figured out I was serious enough about playing the drums that they could afford to actually invest a little money in it. On my thirteenth birthday they surprised me with a Tama drum set. When my birthday rolled around my mom told me that she and my dad were going to give me a $100.00 clothes spree at the mall. I was a little disappointed because I really wanted a new drum set but I tried to make the best of it. As we were driving to the mall, we got off of the freeway, and my mom turned left instead of right to go to the mall. I said, “Mom, you just turned the wrong way. The mall is the other way.” She said, “ Oh, I didn’t realize. I don’t know what I was thinking.” When I suggested she turn around, she said, “Oh, I missed the turn!” She was making all of these excuses that were really believable for her personality. I did not catch on. When she pulled into a parking lot, I thought, “Finally, we’re turning around!” It still didn’t dawn on me. She pulled in, parked and said, “Ok, we’re here.” There we were at the music store where she surprised me with a real drum set. I was shocked. She should have gotten an Oscar for that performance. Needless to say, I get my humor and performance gene from my mom.

Have you always enjoyed performing?

Yes, I’ve always liked performing. You know some people are just naturally shy? I am not. I’ve been afraid of things in my life but that never stopped me from doing what I wanted to do. I’ve felt fear, I’ve felt self doubt and I’ve thought, “Oh, I hate how I look doing this,” or “I’m nervous to do that because people will judge me,” but I don’t take those thoughts too seriously. This courage I have is a gift. I think an important part of facing my fears is knowing my boundaries. It’s about knowing what I’m good at and what I’m not good at and being okay with that.

Elaine with her husband

Elaine with her husband

As far as performing musically, I’ve been in bands, whether real or imaginary, since the fourth grade. I used to draw pictures of my imaginary bands with names like The Rockets. In sixth grade I was into New Kids on the Block, Another Bad Creation, and all of that music. I started a band with two of my friends; it was a rap/pop group. We used to sing and dance our original songs on the playground. So, performing is perpetual for me. It just always was. In high school, I moved to a suburb of Chicago called Crystal Lake and made some new friends. One of my new friends and I decided that it would be awesome to form a rock band. I was going to sing, and he was going to play the guitar, and he knew somebody who played the bass. We had our line up. I ended up singing, playing the drums and guitar at various points while I was in that band. Eventually, I became the guitarist front woman, and we toured around for about five years.

How did Mormonism fit in with your musical pursuits growing up?

Growing up, I never liked being Mormon. I remember sitting in Primary and thinking, “I wish I didn’t know this. Why was I born into this family? My friends are so much luckier than I am because they don’t have all of these weird rules.” I was a rebellious kid. I remember singing “I Hope They Call Me On a Mission” and thinking it was really preposterous because I didn’t want to be called on a mission. That said, I think I felt that way because I knew that the gospel was true. There was this nagging feeling that it was true mixed with my desire for worldly fame and fortune. Growing up, I felt within me this collision of two distinct worlds. I didn’t really make peace with that tension until I was 21 and maybe even to a certain extent until recently.

I remember having a conversation with my mom in high school. We were driving in the car, and she said to me, “I know you want to be a rock star but what if Heavenly Father were to say that’s not what He wants for you?” I told her point blank that I wouldn’t listen. I wasn’t willing. I had the erroneous thought that Heavenly Father did not want me to be happy. Whatever I wanted, He would tell me to do something else just to spite me. Somehow I got the impression that Heavenly Father was laughing at me from heaven. So in response to that fear, I just ignored Him. I always knew that God was there. The gospel made sense to me and spoke to me on a certain level but at the same time it made me angry. I wanted to be ignorant. During high school one of my biggest complaints was that people in the church were not cool. It was very disappointing for me that most of my friends were outside of the church, and most of the people in the church were people I didn’t want to hang out with. Of course, this complaint was just a cover for my fears about God judging me. In general, it was a really difficult time.

I had the erroneous thought that Heavenly Father did not want me to be happy.... Somehow I got the impression that Heavenly Father was laughing at me from heaven.

Add to this the fact that I wanted to do drugs. For some reason I romanticized it. It might be because I had older siblings who were kind of getting into it, and these were people I idolized. I went down the wrong path and stopped thinking about God and the church because I knew that if I did it would mean something, and I would have to change something. When I was 21 years old I started dating a guy who didn’t drink and do drugs. He didn’t even swear. We were taking a walk one night, and I said, “Are you religious? I notice that you don’t do these things.” He didn’t know that I was Mormon or had a Mormon background. He told me he was Christian and then said something pivotal. “I think it’s important to have a personal relationship with God.” And boom! It seriously felt like an effectual door was opened in my mind and clarity and honesty came rushing through. I realized at that moment that I was not being honest with myself. His comment was a lightening bolt straight to my heart. It was one of those moments when everything changed. I thought, “I don’t know what God wants for me. I have no idea what the truth is right now, and I’ve got to be honest about that. I’ll get some information from my parents about Mormonism, and I’ll start there. And if it’s not there, I’ll go somewhere else. Mormonism is what I have from my youth, I’m going to examine it, and I’m going to be honest with God. If this is what He wants me to do, then I’ll do it.” This was really the chance for me to decide for myself. I definitely think that Heavenly Father knows me and understands what I need. To be told what to do and to respond to that doesn’t really work with the kind of personality I have. I need to know for myself. I need to make my own path. I think I could have made it a better path if I had chosen to do so, but I’m grateful for the things I learned because of it. God prepared a way for me in spite of my rebelliousness.

LDS_woman_photo_Bradley3

I really started learning about the gospel after that conversation with my boyfriend. That was also at the height of my band’s tour schedule, which involved a lot of partying. When I had this spiritual realization I quit drinking, and I quit doing drugs. I just quit it all. Because of some unrelated tensions, the band just kind of fell apart, and we called it quits. I realized that if there ever were a time that I could go on a mission it would be now. But here’s the thing: Since I was a kid, I did not want to serve a mission. It did not sound good to me. At all. Ever. When I would think about going on a mission, I would automatically think, “No. I don’t want to.” But there is this overarching theme of honesty in my life. So I thought, “Okay, honestly, is a mission something I should do?” I needed to get myself out of the way so that I could make a proper, informed decision. So for months I prayed, “Heavenly Father, help me to want to know if I should go on a mission.” I did not want to go on a mission, and I did not want to know if I should go on a mission. Knowing is condemnation, and I didn’t want to deal with that. Yet, I continued to pray every night, “Help me to know what is right and to be okay with whatever answer you give me. Help me to want to go.” After a couple of months, I found that my prayers changed to, “I can see myself being okay with a mission. Help me to know if that’s something I should do.” I finally got to the point where I thought, “You know, I could just get mission papers and fill them out and then pray about it and then turn them in if the answer is ‘yes.’” I was open enough to that option to do that. So I went to the church and started asking the bishop for some mission papers. I didn’t even finish my sentence, and he said, “Oh, you’re going to go on a mission?” And immediately I said, “Yeah!” From then on I was committed to going. I never wavered after that moment.

I always knew that God was there. The gospel made sense to me and spoke to me on a certain level but at the same time it made me angry. I wanted to be ignorant.

I went on my mission to Frankfurt, Germany, which is where I met one of my best friends, Bryce Taylor. Bryce and I never served together, though. We met once at a missionary activity, and his first memory from that day was of me doing a kick flip on a skateboard in a skirt. Some of the office elders had some of the music I made before and during my mission. I had a guitar in my apartment for ten months and the mission president let me record some acoustic stuff for him. One day, the office elders had Bryce listen to my music, and he loved it. He said, “Oh my gosh, I’ve got to get ahold of this sister.” I was scheduled to return home around this time, so Bryce got permission from the office to call me the week before I left. He said, “Hey, you don’t really know me but this is Elder Taylor. Yeah, I just wanted to say that we should play together. I play in a band at home, and I think you should come to Utah.” At the time I was toying with the idea of going to BYU, but I didn’t really think he was serious. So many people say, “Oh, you play music? Let’s get together.” I really didn’t know how seriously to take him. Six weeks after that phone call Bryce came home from the mission and proceeded to call me every Sunday to ask me when I was coming out to Utah. His hounding was seriously half the reason I decided to even apply to BYU.

After you returned from your mission, how did you get involved with Neon Trees?

I applied to BYU, got accepted, and moved out to Provo. Bryce and I started playing some music together. He would come over and jam with me in my basement—he played the guitar, and I played the drums. It sounded really cool, and we realized we couldn’t just keep it in the basement; we had to form a band. So we called a friend of his and got him to play bass. We became this three piece in Provo called Another Statistic. We started playing with another local band called Neon Trees. I remember looking at them and thinking, “Wow, they are really talented. I want to play in their band.” After three years, Another Statistic came to an end because we all had different levels of commitment. I knew I wanted to play music professionally. I didn’t want to sit around Provo and play once a month. Around the same time, Neon Trees was going through the same struggle. Two of the members–Chris and Tyler–wanted to get serious and the other guys weren’t willing to put forth the effort to do it, so they parted ways. It was so harmonious and so fateful that right when Another Statistic was fading, Neon Trees split. So Tyler and Chris invited me and another musician, Branden, to join them and this harmony was born.

LDS_woman_photo_Bradley4

How do you navigate being an active LDS woman within the music scene?

Honestly, there’s not much tension in navigating the music scene as a Mormon. You see so many bad after school specials or seminary videos where the kids say, “Come on, everyone is doing it!” But it’s not like that at all. The idea that drugs are synonymous with rock n’ roll is an assumption and an unnecessary connection. Not to say that rock n’ roll musicians don’t do drugs. Many do. I’m just saying that it’s not necessary to do drugs in order to produce good music and to be successful in this business. Actually, I think the drinking scene is far more prevalent than the drug scene because it’s more socially acceptable. It’s everywhere. Liquor companies sponsor parties and shows all of the time. I think it helps that everybody in our band is Mormon. Granted, everybody in the band is on a different rung of the spiritual ladder. We don’t make any pretensions about how righteous we are or how many mistakes we may or may not make. Within the band we try to withhold judgment from each other because life is not easy. With that said, we’re all return missionaries, we have all agreed—both as a business and as friends—that we are not going to party in the band. We don’t do that on tour, we don’t do that in the van, we don’t do that outside of the van, it happens nowhere around the band, anytime, ever. It’s a business decision, but there’s definitely a moral strength and comfort that comes from it. It’s never a temptation because we’ve already agreed.

Within the band we try to withhold judgment from each other because life is not easy. With that said, we're all return missionaries, we have all agreed—both as a business and as friends—that we are not going to party in the band.

Because of the music we make, people are always surprised to find out that we’re Mormon. I think that’s because we don’t approach music from a Mormon standpoint. We’re not a “Mormon” rock band; we’re a rock band that happens to be Mormon. It’s not possible as Mormons, though, to completely ignore your background. For example, sometimes the spirituality of Tyler’s lyrics shines through. On the other hand, we can write unapologetic pop songs that have nothing to do with religion and be totally okay with it because we don’t have a religious platform. We are simply four people who grew up with a certain belief system who also want to make good music. I think the two can be separated. With that said, I definitely think about how my actions represent Mormonism—I think it would be irresponsible and sloppy of me to assume that I don’t have an effect on people. Since we’ve been gaining popularity and doing really well on the radio, I’ll get Facebook messages from people who say, “Hey, I found out that you’re Mormon. That’s really awesome because I’m Mormon. You’re a really good example to me.” I love that. Those are the things I think about when making personal decisions about how I want to behave and what kind of image I want to give off.

I really try to include God in my decisions about music and the band. I ask Him to open doors or close doors as necessary. I kind of keep an open heart about it. Before, I was too afraid to talk to God because I didn’t want to get a “no” answer. I think I’ve learned through my life’s experiences to be more honest with Heavenly Father. I used to think of praying as something that I had to be in the mood for or that I had to say just the right thing. I felt like I couldn’t tell Him that I was scared. Now, I tell Him that I’m scared but I want to do the right thing. I think that was a step that I was definitely leaving out before. I didn’t think I could pray because I didn’t know what to say. It’s hard to have that personal relationship with God if you can’t be honest with Him. I’m still figuring that out. In recent years I think I’ve truly taken that to heart. Even before I think I always kind of reserved some special part of me that I wouldn’t share with God because either I was ashamed of it or I was afraid of it. Even in just the last year I’ve learned how to be more honest. I’m sure I’ll say the same thing next year—I’ll be even more honest then than I am now. It’s a process. It’s getting to know somebody. Learning how to trust somebody with your deepest, darkest most special thoughts and feelings.

At A Glance

Elaine Bradley


LDS_woman_photo_BradleyCOLORLocation:
Provo, UT

Age:
Eternal

Marital status:
Happily married since January.

Occupation:
Musician (drums/backing vocals for Neon Trees)

Schools Attended:
BYU graduate. BS Public Health, German minor

Languages Spoken at Home:
English primarily, sometimes German with my husband

Favorite Hymn:
“Oh Savior Thou Who Wearest A Crown”

On The Web:
www.neontrees.com

Interview by Krisanne Hastings. Photos used with permission and from neontrees.com.

63 Comments

  1. Krisanne
    2:50 pm on February 9th, 2011

    From the Interview Producer: This was one of my all time favorite interviews to produce. Elaine has an energy and an honesty about her that’s magnetic. I really appreciated her candor in expressing some of the difficulties she faced when trying to reconcile her passion for rock music performance with the gospel of Jesus Christ. I loved her realization that her passion for music and for God don’t, in fact, need to be reconciled at all; God is supporting her and directing her towards her greatest potential.

  2. Skoticus
    4:06 pm on February 9th, 2011

    We have the same favorite hymn!

    But, besides that, thanks for the inspiration, and keep up the good work.

  3. Thomas Parkin
    4:08 pm on February 9th, 2011

    I feel like I may cry. I needed to know people like this so much when I was younger. But it was a very different Mormon universe back then. Thank you for existing, Elaine Bradley.

  4. Katrina
    4:10 pm on February 9th, 2011

    great interview!

  5. Melody
    4:13 pm on February 9th, 2011

    Very nice. Thank you. .. and for the music too.

  6. Michelle Glauser
    4:42 pm on February 9th, 2011

    Wow. I had no idea. Rock on!

  7. Shanakin Skywalker
    4:52 pm on February 9th, 2011

    Radical.

  8. KT
    6:06 pm on February 9th, 2011

    Love her honesty. We all struggle. There are many members of the church who put on a facade as if they are perfect. Many are scared to put it all out there. I applaude her for doing so. Great example. I thank her for being brave and sharing.

  9. danithew
    7:49 pm on February 9th, 2011

    For people who are interested, there’s some fantastic video of Elaine Bradley and the lead singer of Neon Trees playing at the site for “Live at Daryl’s Place” (associated with Daryl Hall from Hall & Oates).

    Look for episode #36.

    http://www.livefromdarylshouse.com/welcome.html

  10. Stephanie Fugal
    9:18 am on February 10th, 2011

    I am a better person for having known Elaine. She is an inspiration on so many levels and her music is a reflection that inspiration. Her life, her husband, her music, her commitment to God, her talent, and her personality are blessings to those who know her, either from a distance or up close and personal.

  11. Martin
    11:15 am on February 10th, 2011

    LDS, RM, female rockstar. Just awesome. And well-spoken to boot!

    Very inspiring!

  12. Deila
    11:43 am on February 10th, 2011

    Great interview. I love your example of struggle and success all within the framework of being a Mormon. This touched me–”God prepared a way for me in spite of my rebelliousness.” So true. For many of us.

  13. ep
    10:52 pm on February 10th, 2011

    I resonated with so much of this. Thanks Elaine and Krisanne!

  14. Izzy
    10:56 pm on February 10th, 2011

    I appreciate Elaine’s honesty in this article. And she is brave for sharing the things she’s learned with all of us. I think she is a great model for anyone…but especially girls and woman who are finding out who they are and what they want out of life.

  15. Carolyn Doty
    12:05 am on February 11th, 2011

    Elaine was married in January 2010 — Mt. Timpanogos Temple. Her husband has dual U.S./German citizenship. Her family really enjoyed this interview!

  16. KLS
    9:08 am on February 11th, 2011

    Beyond fantastic. What an inspiration!!

  17. ~j.
    10:36 am on February 11th, 2011

    This is the best thing I’ve read in a long time. Thank you.

  18. TaterTot
    3:11 pm on February 11th, 2011

    Awesome. Just Awesome. I loved reading this. Thanks.

  19. o l i v i a
    9:33 am on February 13th, 2011

    i never knew elaine personally, but i can proudly prove my memories of her from my earlier zoobie years with my authentic ANOTHER STATISTIC mini-button which still resides in my bag of buttons. i attended several concerts and was fascinated by this rockin female at the drums. (perhaps it was more a jealousy that i hadn’t followed my own half-hearted middle school dream that if i had to play an instrument it would be the drums?)

    but now to meet her “for reals?” so real. so cool. thank you krisanne and elaine for putting this out there. i hope this has a WIDE audience. i know one too many who couldn’t balance God vs. Rock; who didn’t realize they didn’t have to reconcile the two.

    i’m fascinated by you all the more, elaine! thank you!

  20. Elaine Bradley: ‘Marching to the Sound of Her Own Drum’
    11:02 am on February 13th, 2011

    [...] the most recent addition to the ‘Mormon Women Project’, Krisanne Hastings has interviewed Elaine Bradley, the drummer and backing vocalist for Billboard top #100 alternative rock band ‘Neon [...]

  21. Arlene
    2:41 pm on February 14th, 2011

    I was very touched by Elaine’s message. We all struggle with ourselves from time to time and it is very refreshing to have someone share some of her inner struggles so openly. I was also impressed with how the band treats one another. I hope that this will mean they will be able to support one another for a very long time. I learned many good things from this article that will change my life. Bless you Elaine; march on.

  22. Erin McKay
    4:48 pm on February 14th, 2011

    Loved this interview–thank you for sharing your story Elaine. As an entertainer who happens to be Mormon as well, I found bits of myself in your interview. Thank you for being honest, open and unapologetic about your testimony and journey. You rock!

  23. Terri Wagner
    11:12 am on February 16th, 2011

    Let me echo the feelings here Elaine. It’s very important for everyone to know Mormons aren’t cookies cutter people. We are diverse and it’s a good thing. I struggled with the mission field’s Utah Mormon attitude for a long time. Eventally I just accepted we’re different out here and it’s ok. Thanks for reminding us, it’s ok to be different.

  24. Utah women who rock | The Local Landing
    2:18 pm on February 22nd, 2011

    [...] Their music has topped the charts and brought the indie spotlight over to Utah. Their drummer Elaine Bradley has inspired countless little girls to pound on the table at dinner time and dream of making it [...]

  25. Utah women who rock |
    3:46 am on February 23rd, 2011

    [...] Their music has topped the charts and brought the indie spotlight over to Utah. Their drummer Elaine Bradley has inspired countless little girls to pound on the table at dinner time and dream of making it [...]

  26. Sally
    7:26 pm on March 8th, 2011

    SO AWESOME! I used to play in a band, and we did lots of shows with the Neon Trees. Elaine was always so friendly and warm to me. I loved watching her play. She was so passionate and enthusiastic, it was awesome. It’s been amazing to watch the success of the Neon Tress and it makes me so happy to see that she’s thriving in the gospel. Really great story.

  27. Janet Larsen
    7:45 am on March 15th, 2011

    Great interview! I am glad she has such a strong testimony and is happily married. But, is anyone else bothered by her performing in a skimpy tank top, singing about chemicals kicking in, and touring around the country with men? She needs to ‘walk the walk’, and we should not overlook the fact that she is a role model to young girls. I do not overlook this behavior just because she talks a good game. Would she have done this at BYU? Probably not.

  28. max
    4:37 am on March 18th, 2011

    awesome story. great writing.

  29. anna
    2:00 pm on March 18th, 2011

    @Janet Larsen, in defense of NT I’m pretty sure if you listen to the song the “chemicals” they are referring to are those that exist naturally in the body – as in the physical response we have to another person as we are falling in love, or feeling other strong emotions. I could be wrong, but I’d be surprised if it was referring to anything illicit.

  30. D is for Delight « Children’s Books by Annalisa
    8:36 pm on April 4th, 2011

    [...] Marching to her own drum, Elaine Bradley, is wild and motivating.  An interview posted about her HERE made me smile.  I have a weak spot for the song “Animal” and it makes me laugh when [...]

  31. Kaitlin
    3:35 pm on April 5th, 2011

    This was fun to read:)

    I’m glad Elaine shared her story – complete with pictures! They added a lot.

    Isn’t this a great testament to how diverse Mormon women are! This is why I love this site.

  32. Elizabeth
    5:13 pm on April 8th, 2011

    I freaked out when I found out that the band was Mormon. I think its awesome that people can be popular with out bad morals and swearing!

  33. Eric
    4:33 pm on May 3rd, 2011

    It is driving me crazy trying to find and remember the name of a song of yours they used to play frequently on KPGR. It isn’t one of the 4 on the old My Space site. Can you help. I can’t find any other information anywhere on any of the old Another Statistic music.

  34. Leah
    8:49 pm on May 14th, 2011

    Makes me wanna be a rock star! Love to see people doing what they love

  35. Herb S.
    12:59 pm on May 19th, 2011

    She is an inspiration. Well spoken, talented, sincere in her beliefs and seems to be a lovely person inside as well as in appearance. I’m not a Mormon, but have a very deep respect for the Mormon faith. This lady inspires me to learn more.

  36. Peter W. Moss
    7:48 pm on June 8th, 2011

    I’m not a Mormon. I heard Elaine’s band @ BFD in NorCal. As a longtime bassist, I stood in awe and wished she was the drummer in our band. You ROCK Elaine!

  37. Christy
    1:45 pm on June 10th, 2011

    @ Janet Larsen
    I have personally met Elaine and we’ve become close and I can honestly say that she doesn’t “tour the country with men” in a bad way. She is married and Tyler, Chris and Branden are all like her brothers. The relationship that they have is in no way sexual at all. I think it’s awesome that she can fit in as one of the boys and yet she still is girly and feminine.As a younger girl, I believe that she is a fabulous role model. She is proving that she’s a normal person and not just a Mormon. And as for the tank top, she covers everything that needs to be covered and has never ever been about sex appeal.

  38. Nick
    8:59 pm on June 15th, 2011

    Love her music. Her whole take on God and mormonism is interesting. Of course I don’t agree with her, but she is faithful which many people do not have. Having faith is a good step in the right direction, but you might want to limit that faith. I would to refer to her as a Mormon, not a Christian.

  39. Brianne
    7:20 pm on June 20th, 2011

    Nick, I am glad that you appreciate Elaine’s faith. I enjoyed her honesty. I wanted you to know that the name of the Mormon church is ‘The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints’ and that Christ is the center of that church on which all its doctrines revolve.

  40. Heather S.
    6:14 pm on August 11th, 2011

    I enjoyed reading this interview. My daughter who is 12 started playing drums last year. She just kind-of always wanted to. Our family is very musical. I sing, her dad does just about whatever he wants musically, so I think it will be nice for her to have her own identity within our family. Glad to see an example of someone doing it with style.

  41. Peter P.
    10:44 am on December 19th, 2011

    Is there a exception to wearing your garments as a performer? We require all of our young women to follow the Strength of Youth guidelines “Young women should wear clothing that covers the shoulder and avoid clothing that is low-cut in the front or the back or revealing in any other manner.”. That tank top is clearly not covering her shoulder and she is flaunting he disobedience to church leaders publicly.

  42. K. J.
    6:58 pm on December 20th, 2011

    @Peter- I was under the impression that the “Strength of Youth” pamphlet was for the youth. I recall that it has been suggested that adults use it as well as a guide. However, I don’t believe that a ‘suggestion’ or ‘recommendation’ is the same as a ‘commandment’.
    How lucky we are that we don’t have to carry the burden of judging others for their attire, appearance or attitude. Leave that up to God and be happy!

  43. >Utah women who rock
    11:49 am on January 11th, 2012

    [...] Their music has topped the charts and brought the indie spotlight over to Utah. Their drummer Elaine Bradley has inspired countless little girls to pound on the table at dinner time and dream of making it [...]

  44. thoroughbred racehorse
    12:56 am on January 18th, 2012

    I was recommended this web site by means of my cousin. I’m no longer sure whether this put up is written via him as no one else understand such unique about my difficulty. You’re incredible! Thank you!

  45. bill fabian
    10:01 am on January 28th, 2012

    Very good interview…I enjoy the Neon Trees music very much. I find it telling, that through the entire interview, Jesus Christ the Savoir of Man, isn’t mentioned once. Just say’n . I guess the Lord and Savoir Jesus Christ isn’t on her radar, but a generic Heavenly Father is.

  46. Utah women who rock
    3:10 pm on January 30th, 2012

    [...] Their music has topped the charts and brought the indie spotlight over to Utah. Their drummer Elaine Bradley has inspired countless little girls to pound on the table at dinner time and dream of making it [...]

  47. terina
    1:22 pm on March 7th, 2012

    thank you for this article…we are from Tyler’s home town in Southern California and know the Glenn’s…But didn’t know what an incredible young woman Elaine is! Her story had me in tears…and smiling! Going thru mom issues with a rebellious teen and pray pray pray that he too will come to a similar understanding…thank you again for sharing.

  48. Brad N
    2:57 pm on March 26th, 2012

    I taught Elaine at BYU. She is one of the best students I have ever experienced. Hard working, honest, real.

  49. Amanda Y.
    8:03 am on May 22nd, 2012

    I appreciated Elaine’s candor so much so that I shared a few of her quotes in my seminary class today, its so important to know that we are not perfect and we aren’t expected to be…Some times we have to start with a desire to want to know what our Heavenly Father wants for us. Thanks so much, it really resonated with several of my students that I know are struggling.

  50. Donna
    12:12 pm on July 7th, 2012

    What a great role model for young women everywhere. I loved this article and her honesty about her spiritual journey.

  51. in which the facebook proves it is good for more than farmville and discreet stalking « looking for chicago
    7:32 pm on July 9th, 2012

    [...] sans their badass Mormon drummer, Elaine Bradley, who is my hero. But she’s eight months pregnant, so it’s okay. She probably [...]

  52. a blog like me » Neon Trees
    2:33 pm on August 10th, 2012

    [...] Interview with Elaine Bradley [...]

  53. Dustin
    9:10 am on September 1st, 2012

    It is fun to show that picture to people and tell them that this band is comprised of a bunch of Mormons. It helps take people out of the cookie-cutter mind frame, lets them know that even if your hair is a little extreme, you can still be a good person.

  54. Juan
    4:57 pm on September 20th, 2012

    I JUST WANT IT TO SAY NEON TREES IS MY FAVORITE ROCK BAND(im not a rocker)AND I LOVE THE WAY SHE PLAY THE DRUM GOD BLESS U, you are a great role model for young people.

  55. Jeni
    10:18 pm on December 5th, 2012

    So happy to hear of another STRONG woman. We need as many as possible!

  56. John
    10:52 pm on January 22nd, 2013

    Wow! What a great interview! Thanks to Elaine and Krisanne for such an open and direct interview. The content is inspiring and it is refreshing to see someone not run or hide from their faith.

  57. Jessica
    9:18 pm on June 1st, 2013

    I was mission companions with Elaine, and she has this real gift to be honest to her real feelings. It’s way too easy to try to stay in a social mold, because nobody wants to get judged by other people or flaunt their weaknesses for the world to see. It’s through the hard things though that we become glued to each other as children of God, and come to know Jesus better in this life. Elaine is an amazing example because she’s willing to be so vulnerable by putting herself out there musically, spiritually, and physically. Love her. She sure taught me a lot. Amazed at how she’s chased a dream and made it a reality. Too many people, especially women, put dreams on shelves to fit some proverbial Mormon mold that exists so prevalently in Mormon culture, but not in the faith itself. Booyeah Elaine!!

  58. Elaine Bradley of Neon Trees. | Download Music
    2:10 pm on June 17th, 2013

    [...] Upon A Time’s Josh Dallas isn’t the only artist with a background in New Albany. Elaine Bradley is the drummer for Neon Trees, a band I’ve come to enjoy quite a lot since Richard Atnip [...]

  59. Norm
    9:08 pm on July 31st, 2013

    I was looking for an article for someone else named Elaine that played the drums (Elaine Harris from Trip Shakespeare… google them). I found this instead. GREAT interview. BTW, I’m LDS. :-)

  60. Drew Armstrong
    2:01 pm on March 24th, 2014

    Wow… today being the day that Tyler sort of “came out” in Rolling Stone… Juxtaposed with this article. I LOVE THIS BAND… As a mormon… and a supporter of equal rights… It is turning out to be an epic day… I have kids who are teens, we live in PG, UT and my girls are going to read this article… I love my church but hate to see the inadvertent conformity that young LDS people are sometimes pushed into. God does not care what you look like… dress like or listen to if your heart is in the right place.

  61. Bob LaBadie
    5:37 pm on March 26th, 2014

    Hello Elaine,

    My family and I were front stage of your NYC 2013 NYE performance and I have pics and movie clip on my iPhone 4.0 that I need to get off and want to give them to you guys to use as you see fit. Hopefully my girls (aged 12 & 14) will help me get them off so that I can upload to your band.

    FYI, my family (bright pink hat front row) and I are visable at 5:21 into the utube vidoe currently on line.

    Regards,
    Bob

  62. Always a Learner
    11:01 am on April 5th, 2014

    As a mother of four young men and an advisor to the Young Women of our area, I thank you Elaine for sharing your personal struggles and triumphs with us. I am excited to share this article with them so they can see that there are others in the world who have similar thoughts, desires, and standards.

    I love how you stated, “The gospel made sense to me and spoke to me on a certain level but at the same time it made me angry.” Many of our youth feel the same this very minute. It brought tears to my eyes thinking of many of our youth that are struggling in their lives trying to figure out who they are and who they will become. Everyone must also learn for themselves and choose their own path. As a parent and advisor to youth, it is difficult to watch choices that are made.

    Your statement “everybody in the band is on a different rung of the spiritual ladder.” truly was my “A-Ha Moment”! If we expect others to be more spiritual than they are is what causes rebellion or even uncertainty. Thank you thank you. I know I need to be there for them if questions need to be answered or guidance be given as your parents were for you; not pushing or judging. Help them trust in themselves. GUIDING, not pushing or forcing them to make good choices. Be an example of making good choices. Show them that good choices turn into happiness, and happiness brings good opportunities to us.

    Be honest with yourself and your Heavenly Father. Trust in your Heavenly Father and yourself and love will come your way. Love is what life is about.

    Thank you for helping me learn from your example!

  63. Candy wilder
    11:25 am on April 27th, 2014

    I’m a Mormon in a band. I loved reading this article so much! I feel so inspired, God wants us to be happy. Rock music makes me happy the end.

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