Today’s Song: Quinn Sullivan Kicks Off New Era With “Salvation (Make Me Wanna Pray)”

Quinn Sullivan © 2023
Quinn Sullivan © 2023
Singer/songwriter and guitarist Quinn Sullivan takes ideas from his last record ‘Wide Awake’ and fully transforms them into a full-on psychedelic rock banger with “Salvation (Make Me Wanna Pray).”
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“Salvation (Make Me Wanna Pray)” – Quinn Sullivan

Some may remember Quinn Sullivan as the young guitar prodigy showcasing his uninhibited skill on the Ellen show at age five. Others may know him as the young man up onstage with the greats at Eric Clapton’s Crossroads Festival at MSG. What they may not know is that Sullivan is now 24 years old, playing original music and on-brand covers across the country, delivering strong, mature vocals and striking, technical guitar solos. When he goes for the solos, a small smile begins to form as he places one foot on the amp in front of him, leans forward, closes his eyes, and lets the music wash over him. He is in his element.

Salvation - Quinn Sullivan
Salvation – Quinn Sullivan

His newest original release, “Salvation (Make Me Wanna Pray),” falls in line with the sound he has developed on previous records, but shows significant growth in his ability as both a storyteller and an overall creative, using formative events from the last year of his life to fuel his new material. At a show at The Falcon in Marlboro, NY over the summer, he debuted “Dark Love,” a trippy, sensual cut thought to be the lead single from his upcoming record, and began the feeling out process. But, for whatever reason, he decided to pivot, releasing “Salvation (MMWP)” as the lead single having never played it live up to that point.

Musically, “Salvation…” goes everywhere and nowhere at the same time. Stuck on the same groove from start to finish but with a whole lot of improvisation, Sullivan’s specialty, in between. He has been exploring this type of sound over the last year since he began covering “Eyesight To The Blind” by Sonny Boy Williamson, and decided to put it into practice here. Vocally, he sounds incredibly practiced and healthy, and is at a place in which most of his choices, excluding some haywire falsetto bits, seem natural and authentic.

Quinn Sullivan © 2023
Quinn Sullivan © 2023

On first listen, the track seems to detail a lovestruck Sullivan praising a new flame. A love so strong he doesn’t even really know what it means, but something that feels like a religion. “No idea, I could believe in my salvation. I can’t explain but you make me wanna pray.” The roaring guitar solos throughout and the massive buildup in the bridge are truly Sullivan’s best answer to whatever he doesn’t understand, seemingly just resorting to his love language to better express the adrenaline and curiousness he’s feeling in the moment.

However, this is just the exterior. On Instagram, Sullivan spoke of the song’s true intentions: “I’ve gone through a lot of loss recently, and I suppose part of my process of grieving has been searching for what will give me relief from the lose that I’m dealing with, and what will take some of this pain away from me.” The reality, it seems, is that the song, and the “on the prowl” energy of it, is a defense mechanism. A form of therapy. For a musician like Sullivan, creating and executing a song like this may be more beneficial than sitting down on any couch and spewing your guts for $200 an hour.

Sullivan has not released a music video for the track yet, but unveiled a lyric video with rehearsal footage on his YouTube channel. The video sits at around 15,000 views at the time of writing.

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:: stream/purchase Salvation here ::
:: connect with Quinn Sullivan here ::
“Salvation (Make Me Wanna Pray)” – Quinn Sullivan

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Salvation - Quinn Sullivan

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