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WN Music News: June 20, 2011

posted by Chad Bonham

Fernando Ortega set to release first album in five years

Once a leader within the evangelical worship community, Fernando Ortega has taken a different direction as an Anglican music leader and proponent of a resurgent liturgical movement. This new focus is highlighted in Ortega’s July 12th release Come Down O Love Divine (Stylos Records/Word Distribution), a collection of original instrumental songs and lyrical hymns and his first album in five years.

Come Down O Love Divine is really about a longing for the experience of heaven on earth,” Ortega said in a press statement. “That is how I think we are supposed to approach life, and I think for me, this album is about how every aspect of our lives should be measured out by the narrative of Christ’s life.”

To keep up with the latest on Ortega’s music, visit his official website by clicking here.

Jesus Culture’s Jake Hamilton making big impact with Freedom Calling

The Jesus Culture movement out of Bethel Church in Redding, Calif., has been shaking up the worship community for the past couple of years. On the frontline of that spiritual earthquake is rock-influenced worship artist Jake Hamilton who recently released his sophomore project Freedom Calling. The new album includes 11 original songs and a DVD that features three songs and a 30-minute piece about Hamilton.

“I long to give the Body of Christ a language for reformation and revival through melodies that will be carried on for generations,” Hamilton said in a press release.

For information on Hamilton’s tour dates and his appearances with Jesus Culture, visit the group’s official website here.

Superchick’s Tricia Brock branches out with solo worship debut

Known for her role as lead singer of the quirky but highly melodic pop/rock band Superchick, Tricia Brock is showing another layer of creativity with the week-old release The Road (Inpop Records). Brock’s distinctive voice is evident throughout the record, but the musical background and its lyrical content is more targeted towards worship and adult contemporary listeners.

Brock relied on husband Nick Baumhardt, best known for his work with Stellar Kart, FM Static and Thousand Foot Krutch, to produce the project. Brock’s first single, “You Are My Shepherd” is currently being played on Christian AC stations across the country.

For more details on the new album and Brock’s solo efforts, check out her official website here.

Upcoming album releases (June 21):

Peter Furler – On Fire (Sparrow/EMICMG)
Stuart Townend – The Journey (Kingsway/EMICMG)
Aaron Keyes – Dwell (Kingsway/EMICMG)
Shonlock – Never Odd Or Even (Universal/EMICMG)
The Katinas – Collage (Independent)
August Burns Red – Leveler (Tooth and Nail/EMICMG)
The Martins – New Day (Spring Hill/EMICMG)
The Crimson Armada – Conviction (Razor and Tie/Provident)
These Hearts – Forever Ended Yesterday (Victory Records/Provident)
Ronnie Freeman – Perfect Love (Universal Music/EMICMG)
Danen Kane – Love Is Waiting (Digital Indie Release)
Patrick Paegel – Unfailing Love (Penny’s Gang Records)
Casey Darnell – Coming Alive (North Point Music)
Great Worship Songs Praise Band – The Acoustic Set (Great Worship Songs)
Various artists – EMI Gospel 2011 (EMI Gospel)
Various Artists – Fire It Up (Tooth and Nail Records/EMICMG)
Various Artists – Great Worship Songs For Kids Vol. 5 (Great Worship Songs)
Various Artists – Holy Hip Hop Vol. 11 (Holy Hip Hop)
Various Artists – iWorship @ Home Vol 14 DVD (iWorship)
Various Artists – Time Will Pass You By (Tooth & Nail)

Join Whole Notes tomorrow for an interview with Switchfoot’s Jerome Fontamillas, and coming soon, interviews with Blindside, Royal Tailor, Hillsong United and Burlap To Cashmere.

Switchfoot to host annual Bro-Am charity event this weekend

posted by Chad Bonham

Switchfoot hosts seventh annual Bro-Am charity event this weekend

Switchfoot has played for thousands, sold record to millions and won numerous prestigious awards including a Grammy earlier this year. But according to keyboard player/guitarist Jerome Fontamillas, not much can top the feeling the band gets from participating in its own annual Bro-Am surf contest and beach concert.

“It’s probably one of our favorite times of the year because it’s not about Switchfoot the band,” Fontamillas told Whole Notes. “It’s about giving to the community and helping out (Stand Up For Kids). The band is there to help out but it’s more of a community thing.”

This year’s event will be held Saturday, June 18th at Moonlight Beach in Encinitas, Calif., The seventh annual gathering includes surfing contests, food and games and a beach concert featuring Switchfoot, The Howls, The Romany Rye and The Silent Comedy, along with a private auction and an after-party concert at The Belly Up Tavern in Solana Beach headlined by Goo Goo Dolls front man Johnny Rzeznik, Little Hurricane and Jon Foreman’s side project Fiction Family.

While the event is enjoyed by thousands of people each year, Fontamillas said that the Bro-Am is ultimately all about community and giving back.

“It’s really a charity event and Switchfoot just happens to be there,” he added. “It’s cool because we’re not really the focal point. The charity is the focal point and we’re there to help out anyway we can.”

This year, the Bro-Am will once again benefit the San Diego and Oceanside chapters of the non-profit organization StandUp For Kids, which pulls together resources to assist at-risk, homeless and street kids.

“(A few years ago), we were able to visit their place and we saw how they were connecting with the kids that are struggling in San Diego,” Fontamillas said. “They really take them in. That struck us and we wanted to help out. It’s a great organization.”

So far, the Bro-Am has raised more than $400,000 for various San Diego-based children’s charities including last year’s event that pulled in $135,000 on behalf of StandUp For Kids.

For a full list of the weekend’s events, visit the band’s official Bro-Am site by clicking here.

Visit Whole Notes next week for more from Switchfoot’s Jerome Fontamillas including his thoughts on the band’s upcoming studio album Vice Verses (September 27th).

WN Music News: June 17, 2011

posted by Chad Bonham

RED launches video for “Feed The Machine”

Already known for its creative music videos, Grammy-nominated hard rock band RED has done it again with its latest single “Feed The Machine.” Described as “more a short film,” the video debuted last month on ARTISTdirect.com and can be seen by clicking here.

“We’re movie fanatics!” guitarist Anthony Armstrong told ARTISTdirect.com. “’Feed the Machine’ is an intense song, and we wanted the video to be equally, if not more intense, than the actual song itself. The band actually came up with the idea. It wasn’t anything that we got a treatment for from a director. The idea belonged to us. We teamed up with the Irwin Brothers and gave them the vision of what we wanted to do It’s a pretty intense video.”

RED continues a busy touring schedule throughout June, July and August. Fans can keep up with concert dates and other band news by visiting the official website here.

Royal Tailor debuts its first-ever music video

Just two weeks since debuting Black & White, pop/rock band Royal Tailor has released its very first music video for the single “Make A Move.” Directed by Ry Cox, the video features choreography from Nick Bass who has also worked with iconic pop stars such as Michael Jackson, Janet Jackson, Justin Timberlake, Britney Spears and Madonna.

Check out the video for “Make A Move” below:

YouTube Preview Image

With significant sales success already to its credit, Royal Tailor is poised to make an impact on multiple radio formats due to its diverse sound that includes elements of pop, rock, funk and RNB.

For more information about Royal Tailor, including blogs from lead singer Tauren Wells, click here.

Join us next week for more Whole Notes Music News and music reviews of Royal Tailor and Superchick’s Tricia Brock.

WN Music News: June 16, 2011

posted by Chad Bonham

12 Stones signs with Executive Music Group for August release

It’s been four years since 12 Stones last released a full-length album, but the wait for fans of the New Orleans-based rock band is nearly over. Executive Music Group recently announced the August 23rd release of Only Human and the title track is currently being serviced to radio.

“We are very pleased to have signed to Executive Music Group,” leader singer Paul McCoy said in a press statement. “We felt they had our best interest at heart with wanting to get our music back to all our fans worldwide not only in the rock world but our fans in the Christian community. We appreciate all our fans and our main priority is to make sure our music is available to all who support us.”

In nearly 12 years of existence, 12 Stones has sold over two million albums in the U.S., and has scored radio hits with songs such as “Broken,” “Far Away,” “Lie To Me” and “Adrenaline.”

For more information on the new album and upcoming tour dates, check out the band’s official website here.

Brandon Heath and Britt Nicole team up for fall tour

After a successful touring stint with TobyMac this past winter, Brandon Heath will hit the road again in the fall to promote his January release Leaving Eden. This time, Heath will headline a nearly 40-city jaunt across the country in such markets as Cincinnati, Houston, Dallas, Knoxville, Phoenix, Los Angeles, Seattle and Denver.

Heath, a two-time Dove Award winning Male Artist of the Year, will be joined by Britt Nicole whose songs have recently been featured in the film Soul Surfer and TV shows such as “The Biggest Loser, “The Hills” and “Drop Dead Diva.”

For the full tour schedule, visit Brandon Heath’s official website here.

You can also learn more about Britt Nicole’s music at her website here.

Cornerstone Festival brings together groundbreaking Christian artists

The annual Cornerstone Festival will be hosting a special evening on Thursday, June 30th, appropriately called “Jesus Rally” in celebration of the many artists who laid down the foundation for the Christian music industry throughout the 1970s and 1980s.

Featured artists will include Petra’s original lineup, Barry McGuire, Daniel Amos, Phil Keaggy, Randy Stonehill, Rez Band, The E Band, Servant and Sheep. While many of these performances will take place on the main stage, there will also be additional shows and panel discussions throughout the grounds.

“I’m personally very excited to be back playing at Cornerstone,” Greg X. Volz said in a press release. “It’s been 25 years since I last played the fest with Petra, but I have to admit that I’m thrilled to be playing with The E Band again. We haven’t played together in 40 years, and it seems fitting that Cornerstone is the reason to reunite.

Cornerstone Festival 2011 will take place June 30th through July 3rd at Cornerstone Farm outside of Bushnell, Ill. For more information, go to the official website by clicking here.

Join Whole Notes tomorrow for a music review of Superchick lead singer Tricia Brock’s solo debut The Road.

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