Whole Notes

Whole Notes

WN Music News: July 4, 2011

posted by Chad Bonham

New Tooth & Nail signee Nine Lashes set to release first iTunes single

Already released to radio last week, new Tooth & Nail band Nine Lashes will release “Anthem of the Lonely” to iTunes next Tuesday (July 12th). The Birmingham-based rock act, however, won’t see its first full album release until sometime early 2012. Nine Lashes is working with co-producers Aaron Sprinkle and Thousand Foot Krutch lead singer Trevor McNevan.

“It is so crazy to know that we are signed to Tooth & Nail Records,” Nine Lashes front man Jeremy Dunn said in a press release. “Since I was a teenager, I’ve dreamed of playing music for a living. It is surreal to look back and see us come from nothing to this. God is truly impressive.”

You can follow Nine Lashes via Facebook by clicking here.

Upcoming album releases (July 5):
Jeff Anderson – A Thousand Tongues EP (United Republic)
Call To Preserve – Validation EP (Facedown Records/Provident)
Hands – Give Me Rest (Facedown Records/Provident)
Dara Maclean – You Got My Attention (Word) – [iTunes only]
My Epic – Broken Voice EP (Facedown Records/Provident)

Join Whole Notes tomorrow for a conversation with Adam Young of Owl City.

U2 plays impromptu song with blind guitarist

posted by Chad Bonham

If you haven’t heard about this yet, it’s a pretty amazing thing that happened last night in Nashville. U2 was wrapping up its concert there when Bono noticed a man on the front holding up a sign that said, “I’m blind but I can play the guitar.”

Bono brought the man to the stage, asked him what he wanted to play (“All I Want Is You”) and this is what happened:

YouTube Preview Image

Pretty amazing stuff. Hope you enjoyed that as much as I did.

Owl City’s Adam Young still surprised by success

posted by Chad Bonham

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With nearly 50 concert dates between July and October, internet sensation turned platinum-selling artist Owl City is doing its best to put the follow-up project in the forefront of music fans’ minds. All Things Bright and Beautiful released less than three weeks ago when it debuted at #6 on the Billboard album chart.

It’s a far cry from where front man, founder and driving creative force Adam Young was just two and half years ago when the Minnesota native rushed home from his job at Coca-Cola to record the ideas that had bounced around his head all day long.

And Young is still trying to make sense of it all.

“Where I am right now is so far out from anything I ever imagined,” Young told Whole Notes this week. “It’s so far out of my imagination’s reach. Needless to say, never did I think that things would happen and people would start to connect with what I was doing in such a great way. I’m just trying to hang on for dear life and really take in everything in the crazy whirlwind because it’s such a huge blessing.”

Here’s Part 1 and Part 2 of our interview with Young where he talks about his steadfast Christian faith, how God inspires his music, what’s different about the new record, how he deals with critics and naysayers, and much more.

Former Skillet guitarist Ben Kasica writes letter to fans, announces latest plans

posted by Chad Bonham

Earlier this year, guitarist Ben Kasica left two-time GRAMMY winning band Skillet to pursue new opportunities elsewhere. Through his publicist, Kasica shared the following letter to both fans and industry friends:

Dear Friends,

Many of you know after 10 years of playing with Skillet, I’ve chosen to move on. Many people have questioned why I would leave a band ‘at the top’ to pursue ‘smaller’ things. Here is my answer.

When I was 16, I was given the opportunity of a lifetime – to play guitar in my favorite band Skillet. I had been a fan since I was 12, attending loads of concerts, “moshing,” proudly wearing Skillet t-shirts, etc. I never thought I would ever actually be in the band. I was just a normal kid that loved God and believed He had the best for me. But, through a good friend, I got a call for an audition and somehow really believed in my heart it was going to work out. Two weeks later, I was on the road touring and playing in the band. Ten years, almost two million records, countless amazing fans and a myriad of priceless memories later, I’m here writing this memo.

Skillet (L to R): Korey Cooper, former guitarist Ben Kasica, John Cooper and Jen Ledger.

I grew up on Christian music and it maintains a special and unique place in my heart for the way it inspired and shaped me as a child and for how it has contributed to my maturity as a young adult growing up in the business. I often think back to when I was a 12-year old kid, lying in bed with my headphones blaring, dreaming about being a rock star. I think every kid has moments when they dream big dreams like these. The trouble is, most don’t really know how to ever achieve those dreams, even if they know a sense of calling from God. This next phase of life for me is committed to seeing others’ dreams become reality and encouraging people along in their destiny in God.

I recently formed a company called Skies Fall Media Group. The name ‘Skies Fall’ was inspired by the imagery of the Kingdom of Heaven coming down to the earth. The mission of the company is to facilitate a wide range of creative business development in the world of the arts and media. Initially forged as a small recording and production company in 2005, the company was expanded in 2008 to take on artist development, publishing and management and become an artist-centric independent record label, Skies Fall Records. Coinciding with the record company, we operate a full-service recording studio where we are writing and producing music with our clients.

To artists, I hope to be an encouragement to you to continue in your heavenly calling and that you would know refreshment in your work; that you would be reminded of when you were a young musician dreaming of doing music, when you were on a mission to make a difference in this world, speaking the most powerful language in the world through music; that the long drives and early mornings and the absence of normal church-life would be met by a renewed desire to live out the mandate of God on your lives; that you might actually live in the fullest measure of who God created you to be.

Pope Benedict XVI met with artists in the Sistine Chapel recently and said, “You are the custodians of beauty…you have the opportunity to speak to the heart of humanity, to touch individual and collective sensibilities, to call forth dreams and hopes, to broaden the horizons of knowledge and of human engagement. Be grateful, then, for the gifts you have received and be fully conscious of your great responsibility to communicate beauty, to communicate in and through beauty! Through your art, you yourselves are to be heralds and witnesses of hope for humanity!”

I hope that together we can make a difference in the world, that we can communicate the heart of God through creativity and inspiration. I hope that together we can set precedents in business, the arts and media worthy of being modeled by the world. I hope that our success not be gauged solely by sales and numbers, but by our honor for each other, by our excellence in our spheres of influence and by the measure we allow the Spirit of God to lead us. I’m privileged and excited to join you in these endeavors.

Sincerely yours,

Ben Kasica
Skies Fall Media Group

Best wishes to Kasica and his new venture. You can follow Skies Fall Media Group by clicking here.

Join us tomorrow for a sneak preview of the Whole Notes interview with Owl City’s Adam Young. We’ll have the full transcript next week.

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