(Originally posted May 12, 2009) – KNOXVILLE, Tenn. – East Tennessee will officially kick off summer this year with the Feed Your Faith Summerfest ’09 at Sevier Heights Baptist Church on June 18, 2009. Feed Your Faith Summerfest ’09 will feature Sanctus Real, DecembeRadio and Decyfer Down.
Feed Your Faith was started three years ago to bring nationally known Christian speakers, authors and performing artists to East Tennessee while raising money for local charities. Through its events, Feed Your Faith has raised tens of thousands of dollars for East Tennessee food-banks, women’s shelters and groups that help homeless families get back on their feet.
“Our concept is very simple,” said Feed Your Faith founder Mike Williams. “We want to spiritually feed believers by bringing the best, brightest and most thought-provoking Christian events to this area while physically feeding and providing support to those in our community who are in need.”
The Feed Your Faith Summerfest ’09 at Sevier Heights Baptist Church features three of Christian music’s most talented and popular bands; Sanctus Real, DecembeRadio and Decyfer Down. All three bands have earned national followings and best-selling recordings for their unique rock sounds and heartfelt lyrics.
Sanctus Real: Success for Sanctus Real has typically been marked with massive radio singles, including six No. 1 songs and 11 Top 5 hits, albums that have marched up the Billboard sales charts, major tours with some of the biggest names in the business, or draped with various awards, including the Modern Rock Album of the Year Dove Award.
With their newest record, “We Need Each Other,” the Toledo, Ohio-based band members – Mark Graalman, Chris Rohman, Matt Hammitt, Dan Gartley and Pete Provost – feel they have created their most successful album to date because for them, it is just that. After three records, the guys have finally crafted in their fourth effort the ever-elusive album – definitely not the norm in this era of hit singles. Not that the first single and title track wasn’t infectious enough to climb to No. 1 in record time, which it did, but the real surprise for the listener lies in the album as a whole.
We Need Each Other represents a startling leap forward in its songwriting, musicianship and overall production, and for the band, a way to connect to its listeners with a theme worth talking about. Wholeness, family and unity are what Sanctus Real has always been about, but it has never been penned so effectively. Complete with gut-honest lyrics and feel-good melodies from the opening riff to the closing thought, a strong, unyielding sense of unity and community is woven through the very musical fiber of this much-anticipated new album.
Since the release of 2006’s critically acclaimed “The Face of Love,” which feature the No. 1 songs Don’t Give Up and I’m Not Alright, the band members themselves have grown into a unified whole. Since 1996, Sanctus Real has been performing, touring, and recording with joint goals of entertaining and encouraging listeners.
DecembeRadio: Ask anyone who has ever been to a DecembeRadio show to describe the experience and you’ll get an enthusiastic barrage of comments about the band’s blistering stage show and an adrenaline-fueled rock spectacle that leaves audiences nearly breathless. Yet intertwined among the searing guitars and anthemic choruses, the heart of the band shines through on every note. It’s that unwavering commitment to spread the Gospel that defines the essence of DecembeRadio and reverberates throughout their sophomore set “Satisfied.”
“God has called us to do this and we know that,” says guitarist Eric Miker. “Every time we play a show we hear how our songs have impacted people. We’ve had people come up to us after the show and say, ‘This song is what made me realize that no matter what it was that I was going through, I could turn back to God.’ They just need to hear the words.”
Few bands more effectively fuse music and ministry than this Virginia-based foursome. Miker along with lead vocalist/bassist Josh Reedy, lead guitarist Brian Bunn and drummer Boone Daughdrill burst onto the national scene with their self-titled Slanted Records’ debut in 2006. The project was nominated for a GRAMMY for Best Rock or Rap Gospel Album and earned the group four Dove Award nominations, including nods in the Best New Artist category and Song of the Year for “Drifter.” That night the band claimed their first Dove Award when DecembeRadio was honored for Rock Album of the Year, an impressive feat for a new band.
Decyfer Down: As much as “Crash,” Decyfer Down’s current album, is a metaphor for the band’s ability to rise above its most straining circumstances, it’s also a call to action for anyone downtrodden to bounce back from whatever hurdle may hang between where they are and what they hope to achieve. “It’s an impact of our ideals and beliefs in today’s culture and it’s why we have named our album Crash,” said drummer Josh Oliver. “Our life experiences have lead us to where we are right now and circumstances that once affected our lives can no longer control us. This is just a way of expressing and illustrating the scars and the breakthroughs in our lives.”
Not only does the disc overflow with ambition, confidence and overall creative excellence, but the aggressive endeavor also finds the players digging in an even more mature lyrical direction that simultaneously meets listeners of any association exactly where they are, while challenging them to make assertive strides towards increased personal fulfillment.
“As has been the band’s tradition, Crash is certainly capable of connecting with crowds, if only for the unflinching degree of honesty within the lyrics and the overall vibe of the album,” said front man TJ Harris. “As a band, our hope is that listeners will be inspired to explore themselves to an even deeper degrees and that’s an energy I continue to feel every time we deliver these songs on stage.” In addition to Oliver and Harris, Brandon Mills (guitar) and Chris Clonts (guitar) make up Decyfer Down.
Feed Your Faith Summerfest ’09 tickets are available at www.FeedYourFaith.org, at all three Cedar Springs Christian Bookstores and through iTickets by calling 800-965-9324. Tickets are $13 each in advance, $15 at the door and group tickets (ten or more ordered at the same time) will be $11 each. Sevier Heights Baptist Church is located at 3232 Alcoa Highway in Knoxville. Doors will open at 6 p.m. and the Feed Your Faith Summerfest ’09 begins at 7 p.m.
Feed Your Faith Summerfest ’09 is generously sponsored by Cedar Springs Christian Stores and Love 89 Radio. For more information, visit www.FeedYourFaith.org.
Feed Your Faith was started three years ago to bring nationally known Christian speakers, authors and performing artists to East Tennessee while raising money for local charities.