Okay, it's September and all that fun and loafing is over with now. Done. Time to get back to work. Well, maybe not quite yet: the good folks over at Wesley United Methodist's HeBrews Coffeehouse in Southern Indiana are giving you one more chance to relive the lazy, hazy crazy days of summer on September 9 at 7:30 p.m. with a concert featuring ska greats Five Iron Frenzy (hey, my little rabid ska fans, you listening to me here?) and a funky retro-swing band calling themselves The W's. In fact, HeBrews Coffeehouse is pulling in some very interesting acts, as I discovered last night when I stopped by there to check out performing songwriter Jennifer Knapp (whose Kansas album and electrifyingly bold concert performances prove that CCM is finally letting some strong, out-there women jump into things and mix it up). Kudos to Nathan Quillo, youth director at Wesley United Methodist, for playing such an integral part in bringing these bands in.
Also, Jonah's Java has undergone some renovation and is now the bigger, better Jonah's—but still at the same address! They now have a new game room, new stage, larger coffee shop area, "funkier furniture" (I'm quoting the press release, but the more I think about it…that's a great band name if anyone's interested), and an expanded bookstore. In September, their lineup is:
In national news, it seems that CCM is starting to have wider and wider ripples in the pond that is the music industry. Sixpence None the Richer, one of my favorite "new" bands that has actually been around and working hard for several years now, has been getting a great deal of mainstream airplay with their single, "Kiss Me." Angeldust was seen promoting their newest self-titled CD on MTV's Lunch With Jesse, and Rick Alitzer, a newcomer to the CCM scene, has a single titled "Make A Monkey" being released to mainstream AAA format radio stations.
CCM acts with new releases out include Honey, Between Thieves, Silage (and hey! I like these guys, if that means anything…), Mukala, E-Roc and World Against World. Also look for releases from Blah, Yolanda Adams, Crashdog, The Crossing, dc Talk and the One and Only Ashley Cleveland, releasing her live album, You Are There. (Anyone not buying the Ashley Cleveland release will be in trouble with me, so be warned, buddy…) As you can see, September's a wonderful month to hit your favorite Christian bookstore and support some of these great artists.
Owensboro, Kentucky's own No Shades of Grey was, at last report, in the studio working on their first CD release. The band has a lot of smokin' originals that fit neatly into the modern rock format, but they also do some emotionally powerful praise and worship that balances perfectly on the line of artistry and ministry. Definitely look for these guys when they play around your area.
Well, that's enough to get you guys started on your September search for great Christian music. Remember to keep me updated about what you're doing at firstname.lastname@example.org, and as always support your local artists.