Tag Archive | "christian rock"

Former Flyleaf Frontwoman Lacey Sturm Announces Debut Solo Album ‘Life Screams’ For Early 2016 Release

Former Flyleaf Frontwoman Lacey Sturm Announces Debut Solo Album ‘Life Screams’ For Early 2016 Release

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Three years after amicably parting ways with the Platinum-selling, Grammy-nominated Flyleaf, Lacey Sturm is independently releasing her highly anticipated solo debut, Life Screams, in early 2016 on FOLLOWSPOT Records with The Fuel Music distribution. The first single from this self-produced set of urgent, anthemic and lyrically-timely rock, “Impossible,” debuts exclusively on SiriusXM’s Octane (channel 37) Sunday, Nov. 1, at 1:00 pm EST, and goes immediately into rotation thereafter. On Nov. 6, the single will be available on iTunes, Spotify and Amazon, and goes to rock radio for adds Nov. 9.

“Impossible” screams the return of the voice and songwriter who delivered rock anthems like “Again,” “All Around Me,” “I’m So Sick” and “Fully Alive” to the top of the retail and radio charts. The debut solo single from Lacey blasts out the optimistic chorus: “Every morning I see another miracle / I can’t believe I’m living the impossible / We are the sign and we are the wonder / Another day of living the impossible.”

“I was listening to the radio one day and I said to myself, ‘If I hear one more song telling people to kill themselves and go to hell, I’m going to have to put a record out!’” exclaims Lacey. “I just think it would be a good thing to have a voice in the mix of all the hopelessness that actually gives you a light at the end of the tunnel; a voice that’s still honest about the pain and struggle, but can also scream, ‘Hey, wake up and be alive because there’s hope!’”

 Approaching her latest creative phase with newfound perspective and appreciation, Lacey adds, “I really started to value my relationships and the people around me. We started as a group of artists in our hometown of Pittsburgh and Life Screams was kind of an accident.”

Out of this new artist community, Lacey’s live band organically formed and features her husband, Josh Sturm (guitars), as well as Tom Gascon (drums) and Ben Hull (bass). Together, they have already performed for crowds in the tens of thousands and are booked for major rock festivals in 2016.

While music fans wait for the tour dates to be announced, Lacey engaged her extensive social community on an Instagram scavenger hunt yesterday for a cover art reveal contest. One piece of the puzzle was featured on Lacey’s Instagram while eight additional square pieces of the new cover were hidden across Instagram’s platform. The first one to find and stitch together the nine images, tagging the cover #LIFESCREAMS, will receive a signed copy of Lacey’s audiobook, The Reason.

For all the latest Lacey Sturm news and tour detail, go to LaceySturm.com.

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Book Review: Lacey Sturm’s ‘The Reason: How I Discovered a Life Worth Living’

Book Review: Lacey Sturm’s ‘The Reason: How I Discovered a Life Worth Living’

In Stores October 7th!

In Stores October 7th!

Over the past decade, we came to know Lacey Sturm is the voice behind the platinum-selling, international rock band Flyleaf. As part of the band, she inspired countless fans and impacted many of them on a personal level. It came as a shock to many in 2012 when she announced her decision to leave the band, in which she had played such a pivotal role, and would be pursuing a solo career.

In the years since her departure, she has certainly used her time wisely. In addition to exploring the realm of motherhood, she  continues to use her rock princess powers for good by speaking out to others about her faith in many ways. To start, she is a part of The Whosoevers. The organization, whose founders also include Brian “Head” Welch of Korn and P.O.D.‘s Sonny Sandoval, is a youth-focused movement to positively impact today’s music, skateboarding and art culture. By all accounts, the organization is having a positive effect on all involved. Additionally, she has partnered with the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association and even recorded a song, ‘Mercy Tree,’ which was featured in Billy Graham’s 2013 sermon and film ‘My Hope America – The Cross.’

However, in what is undeniably her biggest project to date, Lacey Sturm has now penned a book, ‘The Reason: How I Discovered a Life Worth Living.’ This isn’t your run of the mill, sensationalized rock star tell-all book sensationalizing decades of excess. This is a tale of inspiration, faith and self-discovery. She pulls no punches as she reveals her own story of physical abuse, drug use, attempted suicide and more. With that said, chapter by chapter, she bares her heart and soul offering a look inside the moments that made her the woman she is today. Written in her own voice, she offers these moments raw and unfiltered; tales which run the gamut from heartbreaking to inspiring.

Having seen Lacey Sturm perform with Flyleaf many times over the years, I was always blown away by the powerhouse voice resonating from this petite frame. It was the voice that captured my attention and the powerful and personal lyrics that sucked me in. It is one thing to step into the spotlight as a performer and reveal parts of yourself through song but it is quite another to it in book form! With this book, she pulls it off like a true professional and has brought a truly unique book to life. It brought a smile to my face, when revisiting it’s dedications, that Lacey dedicates the book “To the one like my teenage self, who is a breath away from finding the beauty of a life worth living.” That is the beauty of this book; that it can inspire those who may be in a dark place. Lacey Sturm is living-proof that it is always darkest before the light and a new tomorrow is always right around the corner.

Lacey Sturm’s ‘The Reason: How I Discovered a Life Worth Living’ is a must read for all of her fans, both new and old. The book offers a rare glimpse into the soul of the artist and what continues to drive her on what will continue to be an amazing journey.

“He has a plan for everybody here and it’s all a matter of whether you answer it when He calls you.” ? Lacey Sturm

Get all the latest news and updates from Lacey Strum at her official website, www.laceysturm.com
”‘The Reason: How I Discovered a Life Worth Living’ will be released on October 7th, 2014. Order it via AmazoniTunes and Barnes & Noble.

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Spoken’s Matt Baird Discusses The Creation of ‘Illusion’ And Much More!

Spoken’s Matt Baird Discusses The Creation of ‘Illusion’ And Much More!

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Determination. Dedication. Honor. They are virtues a band must possess in some measure if they want to endure. Yet, these virtues are seldom found today, with the endless turnover of bands in the music industry. If you ask Spoken, however, these words are not just virtues, but mantras. And it is not a coincidence that this band has found a new pinnacle with their new album, ‘Illusion’. After parting ways with previous label home Tooth and Nail shortly after 2007’s self-titled LP, the band has been storing up emotion, building momentum for re-emergence. Now, with a brand new partnership with entertainment conglomerate eOne Entertainment, a new producer, a fresh sound, and a new lineup, Spoken is prepared to eclipse anything they have accomplished previously. ‘Illusion’ is an exercise in aggression and calculated fragility. Laced with testosterone, the album throws down with the elite of metal and hardcore in calculated moments of heaviness. But what makes this record distinctive is not its speedy riffage or it’s pounding beats, but it’s emotional candor. Several of the standout tracks, including the undeniable singles “Through it All” and “Take everything,” dabble more in modern rock than they do in direct assault. Produced by Jasen Rauch (Red), ‘Illusion’ is a concept with which most can relate, as it references disappointment, disappointment, and bitterness. Spoken is confident in this is the hour of their vindication. One must just listen to their new effort to come to similar conclusions. But despite the potential for new plateaus, Baird and his cohorts remain resolved to put motive above stats, honor above potential accolades. Frontman Matt Baird recently sat down with Icon Vs. Icon to discuss the creation of the band’s powerful new album, the hard work that went into it and the struggles they encountered along the way.

I want to go back to your formative years. What are your first memories of music?

Matt Baird

Matt Baird

Music has been in my life since a way early age. My mom and dad were always listening to music. They would listen to The Bee Gees and The Mommas and The Pappas. My dad loved The Beach Boys, Elvis, Three Dog Night and Creedence Clearwater Revival. They both were always listening to the radio. Occasionally, you could catch my mom singing and she has a really great voice. It is weird she didn’t do anything with it, she never sang. My grandma would pick around on the guitar and play old southern Baptist hymns all the time. It didn’t really sink in, how cool that was, at the time. Now I look back and think “Man, that is the coolest thing ever! My grandmom played guitar!” My dad would always tinker around on stuff and I remember the day he brought home a 1967 Gibson acoustic guitar. He bought it at a yard sale for 20 bucks. He said, “Hey, look what I found at the yard sale today!” I said, “That is awesome!” He showed me the chords to “House of The Rising Sun” and that was what got me playing guitar. I only play enough guitar riffs to be dangerous! [laughs] Through junior high and high school, I was way into Metallica, Testament, Slayer, Megadeth and all of those bands but I wasn’t really playing in bands or anything. I never thought I would be singing in a band! Ever! Stage fright is pretty common for me. Now that this is what I do, I just do it. I can’t let it get in the way of the show. It becomes a situation where I think, “This is what you’ve got to do. Ok. Do it! Done!” Music has always been there for me but I didn’t really do anything with it for a while. As far as Spoken goes, I was 19 years old when I started the band. It was way down the line.

What was it about music that made you pursue it as a career as opposed to following different path?

At first I didn’t even know it was something that could be a career. I always loved music, loved playing guitar and hanging out with friends who played music but I was in community college and working full-time for my uncle doing slave labor, basically. I said, “Man, this is not what I want to do with my life.” I had asked God repeatedly about what I was supposed to be doing with my life. One day, there was something which made me change my tune a little bit and say, “God, what can I do for you?” It was just an awesomely overwhelming feeling. I felt like he wanted me to start a band and tell people he has a plan for their life and there is hope. It was really cool because we were just beating around and playing these songs we had written. We just happened to be at someones party, which they were throwing behind their house, and we just brought our gear. It was crappy gear, too! I sang through a guitar amp! We just had our stuff in the car and said, “Let’s play!” We played the three songs we knew and people had a great reaction! That was the moment when we thought, “Let’s actually do this!”

You had your share of ups and downs through the years. What kept you inspired throughout the years as well as fueled your creative fire?

You know, a lot of it is meeting new bands. Bands that are much younger, amazing musicians and songwriters. It is great when you are at a festival or a show somewhere and you have bands like those on the bill. You stand there and watch them and think, “How did they get so good? I have never heard of this band. Who are they? This is incredible!” There is that but honestly I think it is the combination of many things. For one, the desire is there, the desire to do it. Another thing is I don’t feel like God has said, “Hey, idiot. It’s time to hang it up!” I don’t know, maybe he said that a long time ago! [laughs] We kept going. I know my wife is super supportive. My family is all about it and think it is cool. The band members we have had throughout the years, everyone has been onboard and said, “Let’s do this!” Unfortunately, there are times when people leave the band and move on with their lives but it opens up a new door for that new blood, that fire to continue to be lit and fanned. It has been really cool having the fans who know our music tell us stories about how the music has affected them or that they love our band. That support system is great and makes us think about who else we can be in front of to play a show or hear our music and maybe we can influence their lives too.

Spoken’s latest album is titled “Illusion.” What can you tell us about the concept behind it, how you chose the title and what it means to you?

We worked on this record over the course of two-and-a-half years. A lot of bands, as you know, go into the studio and come out a month later with a record. That is awesome if they can do that! With us, we live in three different states, tour eight months out of the year and we have had some member changes along the way. We have had two-and-a-half years of life to live during the writing process. The first songs we wrote for the record, lyrically, deal with bitterness and confusion. It deals with people who drug us into their lives, their drama and spiderweb of “what is going on with you” type of situation, ya know? When people take up hours upon hours of your time over the course of a year, it gets a little draining. You are confused and think, “Why am I dealing with this?” Hopefully, there is a light at the end of the tunnel and all this time spent has been medicinal for these people. Unfortunately, you give people advice because they asked you for it and they don’t like the advice and go in the opposite direction. Those beginning songs are songs about bitterness and being really confused and annoyed.

Spoken's 'Illusion'

Spoken’s ‘Illusion’

“Illusion” was one of those first songs, where people think things are going to go a lot differently. I’m not saying it’s the grass is greener on the other side mindset but they have ideas of “this is what is going to happen if I do this. It will work out this way and be great.” I think that is an illusion and things don’t always work out like you have it planned. It is not always better to abandon this relationship to pursue this relationship or to burn bridges, whether it is with a record label, management, booking agents or whoever. It is not always the best thing to burn that bridge completely and walk away and pursue this other thing because that other thing could possibly not work out. Also, there are a lot of bands who come on the scene and think that because they have been a band a year, that within a year they will be extremely successful, have plenty of money and not have to worry about paying their bills. They think that they are a band and some people like their stuff and that they will blow up huge. I think that is also an illusion. People don’t realize how much work it is to be in a band. It is a lot of work! That is where a lot of bands go on their first tour ever and they realize, “I hate this! I can’t do this!” I think it ties into that as well. Luckily, the record went from some of the bitterness and confusion to grace and redemption. It has been a really cool journey over the past two-and-a-half years. A lot of the situations we definitely wish we didn’t have to deal with but we did and I feel like we are a stronger band, stronger individuals and stronger songwriters too.

That leads to my next question. Are you doing anything differently these days when it comes to songwriting?

Yeah, absolutely. When we started working with Jasen Rauch, he is the guy who produced our record, he also helped to breathe new life into our band. He was literally a band member in the this recording process. He got everything that we got. He was like, “I understand what you are trying to do. Here is how we get there. I understand why you want to do this and here is how we get there.” He is just a brilliant songwriter and when it came to, “How do we write a song, why would we do this, how do we do this,” he had a ton of advice on how to do that. He taught us! He taught us so much about songwriting. We had never really looked at things like, “Let’s check out this band and this song and understand why they did what they did.” For example, why they put a certain kind of bridge in a song and why they did it. We referenced Slipknot so much, whether it be their songs that were more radio friendly or the heaviest songs they have. We referenced As I Lay Dying, Underoath and a lot of bands who are great songwriters and we found out why they do certain things. I feel like over the past two-and-a-half years we have learned a lot about ourselves and why bands write the way they do. It is not just, “Oh, that is a cool riff, that is a cool chorus! Let’s use it!” It isn’t a case of just throwing something together. That was a really cool process, not just going to the studio and having the producer trim the fat off of some songs but being able to do that as we wrote the songs. It helped us so much!

What were your expectations for this album when you headed into the studio?

We wanted to do something we hadn’t done before. I was encouraged to do some different vocals that I had never done before, which was a more guttural screaming type thing. I mixed my normal screaming in with it and sorta back-and-forth’d it to make it more diverse. It even sounds heavier. In the same way, we experimented with tunings a little bit more than we had in the past, just to make things beefier. Not so much like, “Hey, let’s make things darker.” But, at the same time, it did make things darker and cooler. We started out writing just to see how it went and released a song called “Daggers” to radio almost two years ago. We really wanted to get something out there because at that point it had been almost four years since we had put out a record. We felt like we had to let people know we were still alive! Not just because of touring, we always tour! We needed to get a new record out because it was important to us and our fans. It was even important for me and my family. I need to get a record out to help myself provide for my family better. Working off the momentum of a record which has been out for four years makes it hard to book shows! [laughs] We had to get things going. There were a lot of different things we did. We went into it consciously trying to write better songs and experiment with things we hadn’t already done. With it being so long since the last release, we couldn’t release another record like we already had. It had to be something ridiculous. When we released “Daggers,” we thought, “This is our best song, we might as well release our best song and put our best foot forward.” In the end, that song isn’t even on the record! That is because we felt like we really outdid it. We worked really, really hard on this album and had a lot of incredible people involved. We co-wrote a couple of songs with a guy named Mark Holman whose brain just goes to Top 40 radio. He is brilliant! This record was also the first time for us dealing with any sort of co-writes. It was great to bounce ideas off someone who was not in the band. It was really cool.

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As you mentioned, there were plenty of elements at play while making this record. What do you consider your biggest challenge?

Actually, I think getting the record finished was the biggest challenge just because we would route time in the studio into our tours. We would try to get down to Nashville as often as possible and try to spend a couple of days in the studio to write and record a song to have it to sit on and think about. We could mull it over in our minds over the next couple of weeks before we got back to the studio. I think in the end, I think the finances were also a challenge. We would have to have days off in the middle of the tour and make special trips to Nashville where we weren’t playing shows on the way there or back. We would go to Nashville to work on the album for a few days and then take off on tour. Finances for sure were challenging. There was also the challenge of finding a time when we weren’t busy with how busy we are!

On a personal level, how have you evolved as a musician since you started? Do you ever take time to reflect on your journey so far?

'Illusion' - Available Now!

‘Illusion’ – Available Now!

I don’t really think back about the journey of life. There are a lot of things I wish didn’t happen, whether it be a label experience, management experience, booking agents, promoters, band member experiences and even some fans I met over the years I wish I didn’t meet. In all those situations, they have built the character I have now. If I hadn’t gone through those things or dealt with those hard times, I wouldn’t be who I am now. I guess in the end, who I am as a person has far exceeded anything to do with me as a musician. I am in a totally different mindset now. If someone tells you they are going to do this or do that, believe it when you see it. That is probably the most valuable lesson I have learned over the years. Did I have to deal with a bunch of stuff to get to that realization? Absolutely! But it has been the best thing. When it comes to a musicianship standpoint, I have experienced so much with all the different band members we have had. I feel like the players are just getting better. The people who join the band are getting better and better, so it makes it a better band. That puts me in a position where I have to step up my game! I am the oldest member of the band and I am the only original member. I am the only one with a family. It is a fight for me to try and stay relevant. Luckily, I am surrounded by cool people all of the time, so it works out! [laughs]

It sounds like you are in a great place creatively. Should we be surprised to see do another record sooner rather than later?

Absolutely! I actually sent our producer a text message this morning. I was on my way to help someone remodel a house and I was driving. Every time I drive by a certain hospital on the interstate, I pray for everyone in there. It is just something that I started doing six months ago and felt like it was really important. Anyway, I shot our producer a text and said, “Hey, man! I am praying for you and your family.” He responded with, “Hey! What’s going on?!” We chatted back and forth and I told him I was ready to work on a new record and he said, “I am too! For real!” We are definitely going to do it. It is really cool to know that we are all stoked and still in writing mode. It wasn’t that long ago that we finished “Illusion.” We are still in writing mode and are definitely going to be on the ball. I would say by the end of this year, realistically, I think we can have half of a new record written and demo-ed out. We can’t wait as long as we did last time. All of our fans would just abandon us. [laughs]

That leads me to my next question. Seeing as your fans have been patiently waiting for this record, is there anything you want to say to them?

In the end it is simple. Thanks so much for sticking with us. We get several Facebook messages that say, “Hey, glad to see you guys are back!” It is kinda weird to read that because you wonder if they think that we broke up for the past five years or on hiatus. We are always on tour. You try to not look too much into that, ” … glad you guys are back,” because we didn’t go anywhere. We have been there. For those who have followed us and kept up with everything we have been up to, thank you so much for even caring about what we are doing. We don’t take it lightly that people listen to our band, purchase our stuff and come to our shows. We never will take it lightly! If we ever take it for granted, we need to quit. Thanks so much to everyone who supports us! Thank you for doing this interview. We never take anything for granted. We are very fortunate to be a band after almost 17 years and to be involved with a new record label and having management on board like they are and the record that we have, it is awesome! So great!

I definitely find you very inspiring and dedicated. I really appreciate your time and we look forward to spreading the word!

Thanks so much! I really appreciate and I will talk to you soon!

Spoken’s new album, ‘Illusion’, is now available online and in stores. Get all the latest updates on the band at www.spokenmusic.com.

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LOVE AND DEATH: Brian “Head” Welch Discusses ‘Between Here & Lost’

LOVE AND DEATH: Brian “Head” Welch Discusses ‘Between Here & Lost’

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Brian “Head” Welch, an established solo artist, sought the artistic push-and-pull of a traditional band setup since his departure from Korn in 2005. Now, he accomplished his goal in the shape of Love and Death. With Head as frontman, he is joined by 17-year-old guitarist J.R. Bareis, bassist Michael Valentine, and drummer Dan Johnson. Like their name suggests, Love & Death captures the honesty of beauty and tragedy delivered by musicians with intense passion and commitment to their music’s message. The aggression of KoRn is added with melodic elements and memorable choruses throughout the group’s debut album, “Between Here & Lost.” Jason Price of Icon Vs. Icon recently caught up with Brian “Head” Welch to discuss the making of Love and Death’s new album, the challenges involved and what the band has in store for fans in the months to come.

You have had an impressive career in the music industry. I like to jump back and hear a little about how the journey began. What are your first memories of music?

Good question! I was in Bakersfield, Calif., just sitting on my parents couch. I popped in an 8-track tape from Queen. When I heard the drumroll on one of the Queen songs, I was like, “I want to be a musician!” I wanted to play drums but my dad talked me out of it! That is my first memory of wanting to be a musician.

Brian "Head" Welch

Brian “Head” Welch

Who were your biggest musical influences along the way?

I will give you a list! I started with Queen, AC/DC and Ozzy Osbourne. Then I went on to more of the glam metal stuff, or whatever you want to call it, bands like Motley Crue and RATT. As I grew older, I started getting into Faith No More, Nirvana and Alice In Chains. What I listened to really just evolved over time.

Your latest project, Love and Death, is exciting. I want to jump back again for those who might just be learning about what you are up to. Tell us about how this project began to take shape?

I did an experimental solo album, a really personal project, a few years back. It was just Brian “Head” Welch. I decided to take it on the road and see what it would be like. Starting in 2009, I hired a bunch of people. In that time, some left and some stayed. The ones that stayed were like, “Man, we have really been through a lot! It hasn’t been easy!” I found myself wanting to do a less personal album. I wanted it to be more of a group effort with more of a mainstream, normal sound. We tackled that! This music is right where I want to be musically! It has everything I love about music in it. Everyone in the band is excited about this release.

The title of the album is “Between Here & Lost.” How did you arrive at the title?

Actually, I hit up the bass player, [Michael] Valentine, one day. I was going to call the album “The Abandoning,” which is one of the songs on the record. I just thought it was kinda the easy way to pick the title of the album, so I hit him up on an e-mail. I said, “Hey. Try to come up with a name for the album right now.” He hit me back pretty quickly with a list of six names. When I saw “Between Here and Lost” on the list, I thought it was pretty profound. I knew it was the one for sure!

Tell us about the other members of the band and what they bring to the table.

Man, they brought so much! Michael Valentine, the bass player, and I wrote half of the record musically with producer Jasen Rauch. He is like the fifth member of the band. He is a lot of bands hidden member because he plays on a lot of the albums he produces. He has an ear and an ability to take something good and make it great. J.R. [Bareis] is our guitar player. He is 17 years old and he couldn’t write music. I told him to sit down, work out a riff and send it to me. He said, “OK. I’ll try!” He sent me some of the riffs for the record. He did riffs on “Watching The Bottom Fall,” the main riff on “The Abandoning” and a couple of others. Dan [Johnson], is our drummer and more of a beat guy but he would come up with some fills and added a lot of spice to the record. We would just follow his fills. He is a great drummer and I love that guy! Everyone really contributed to this record and we all enjoyed making it.

"Between Here And Lost"

“Between Here And Lost”

How did the writing process for this album differ from what you did in the past?

I would say that I really worked on it in pieces over the course of two years. Whenever I would have breaks from the road, I would go home and start working on it. The biggest thing about this album is having different writers on the songs. Lyrics aren’t my strongest point sometimes. I hit pockets where I feel creative but, along the way, I lose my train of thought and that’s where the lyricist came in. We got together with a guy named Mark Holman, as well as Joe Rickard, who is the drummer from Red. They both wrote some lyrics. Joe also had his partner Josh Baker and a guy named Stacy Hogan. Along with Jasen Rauch, we had a bunch of different writers on the album. That was probably the biggest thing that was different from what I had done before.

Over the past several years, everyone watched you transform from simple band member into a powerful frontman. Did you find that transition difficult?

Yes. It still is at times but I am a lot more comfortable than I used to be. I feel I am in a good place right now and it gets better with every tour. It gets easier and I learn more about my voice, if you know what I mean. I am almost there but it was one of the hardest things I have done. I was on stage the first year or two thinking, “Uh, why did I want this? What am I doing? This is so stressful! You have to control the crowd and lead the band! Are you serious! Why did I want this?!” [laughs]

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Well, I am glad it worked out. It seems like you are in a really great place creatively and you definitely seem right at home.

Yeah! Thank you, man! I appreciate it. It is a really good time for the band and I am really looking forward to this whole year!

What was the biggest challenge in putting the album together?

The biggest challenge was probably the vocals. Dude, I was at the mixing studio with Ben Grosse and his partner Paul [Pavao]. I was in a small room, almost the size of a closet, a little recording room finishing the vocals on three or four songs, down to the last second. I was really down to the last second finishing vocals on this album. I would say that was the biggest challenge — getting the right takes. Some of the songs I didn’t even have choruses for! I was thinking, “Oh, no! What are we going to do? I hope it does suck!” [laughs] It was scary being down to those final seconds and trying to come up with something. It all came out pretty good, so I am stoked!

Looking back on your career, you certainly did a lot of growing. How have you evolved as a musician?

That is a good question. I really feel like I have gotten my creativity back and my ears. My first solo album was all experimental and I loved a lot of the stuff I was doing but I think I my ears were a little off. I listen back to it now and think, “Why didn’t I take that part 16 bars? Why didn’t I just cut that at 8?” It seems like I have a lot more wisdom when it comes to structuring songs and hearing melodies now. It has been eight years since I did drugs, so maybe that is helping heal my creativity.

Love and Death

Love and Death

You have a lot of touring ahead of you. What can we expect from Love and Death in that regard?

Touring is the biggest thing. It is a love/hate kinda thing because I love to connect with people and get out there because that is what we do this for. At the same time, I can’t sleep on the road that well and it is pretty stressful just to go, go, go! We are hitting the road with Thousand Foot Krutch in less than a month. The tour starts in February and we go for a full month. We are booking the rest of the year now and it is going to be solid, solid, solid. We ask for people to check our website for the dates and come out to hang out with us.

Another interesting project you have taken on over the years is writing. Your books are very personal and inspiring. What was that process like for you and do you plan to do another chapter in the future?

That book was kinda crazy because they got me a book deal and I said, “I don’t want a book deal. I want to do music.” As I chewed over the idea, I believe in God obviously, I felt like it was meant to be. I totally poured myself into it. I put my guitar away and worked on the book for eight months. I wrote most of it and I had help describing things, to make me sound smarter than I am! [laughs] I wrote most all of the book and poured my soul into it. It was painful and liberating. It was easy and hard, all at once. I also put out a second book called “Stronger.” That was in 2010. I don’t think I will be doing another book for a while. I am interested in it but maybe in like 10 years if I am still around.

I am sure you will be!

Ya never know, man! Life is fragile!

Even though you wrote these books, you are very accessible to fans and pour your heart and soul into your projects, are there still misconceptions about you?

I think it is all pretty chill now. It has been a lot of years and the world has grown. I am what I am and you can still tell through my music that I still love heavy music. A lot of people, especially the old fans, are like, “I am glad he didn’t die,” because they had read so many stories about that period of my life. I am just like everybody else and I struggle in life like everyone else. I have good days and bad days, so I take it as it comes.

Love and Death

Love and Death

What else can we expect from Love and Death in the short term?

We have a video for “The Abandoning” that just came out. We are really excited to have people check it out and see what we have been working so hard on.

This album just dropped but I was curious to know if you are already thinking about heading back into the studio anytime soon?

I am sure we will but it will probably be 2014. I will start jotting down ideas and the other guys will too.

You mentioned you enjoy connecting with people. Is there any charity work you are involved with currently that we can spread the word on?

Yeah! We do this thing that is pretty cool. It is called Mocha Club (www.themochaclub.org). I help spread awareness on it. It is a company that, instead of asking people to donate all the time, they are asking people to donate $9 a month. The whole concept is that if you give up two mochas a month, you can be putting that money to good use. The money goes to help orphans, provide clean water to those who need it overseas, women at risk and giving them all a new chance at life. It is really cool. I found out about it through my manager. It is a guy who he has known for years. He left the music industry to concentrate on this project. He is a really reputable and inspiring guy. It is an organization I am really proud to be involved with!

We’ve really enjoyed the album and look forward to seeing you play live. Thanks so much for your time today, Head!

Thank you, man! We couldn’t spread the word without you guys! Rock is in a weird place right now. Thank you so much!

To get all the latest news and tour dates, visit Love and Death’s official website at www.loveanddeathmusic.com!

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Flyleaf Release Official Video For “Call You Out”

Flyleaf Release Official Video For “Call You Out”

Flyleaf

Flyleaf has just unleashed the official video for their second single “Call You Out,” off their recently released new album New Horizons, their last with long time singer Lacey Sturm. The animated video follows an angry bear destined to destroy the smaller animals towns, only to find himself faced with the masses. The video was directed by Brad Scott who has this to say about the band and creating the video:

“Our team has been a fan of Flyleaf since the very beginning, so working on a music video for the album ‘New Horizons’ was a great honor. Flyleaf’s new song ‘Call You Out’ is about the power of truth rising against evil. We aligned our characters with a cast of animals who were pitted against the ultimate antagonist in a forest. Through this, the video became the ultimate musical fable; light versus dark, and the triumph of good versus evil. Using live-action and animation we decided to limit our style to a monochromatic tone, with a dark and stormy vibe. I feel that Flyleaf fans all around will love this video, and we’re really excited for the premiere.”

For more of the latest news on Flyleaf, head to their official siteFacebook and Twitter pages. Make sure to pick up a copy of New Horizons on iTunesnow!

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Flyleaf Release Live Video Of “Fire, Fire” With New Singer Kristen May, Release Statement

Flyleaf Release Live Video Of “Fire, Fire” With New Singer Kristen May, Release Statement

Flyleaf

Flyleaf recently celebrated the release of their latest album, New Horizons, with a secret performance during a Signal Rising show at Grand Stafford Theatre in Bryan, TX for close friends & family. This was the band’s first performance with newest member and lead vocalist, Kristen May (formerly of Vedera). Fans can now watch the explosive live performance of “Fire, Fire,” the first track from New Horizons.

Kristen also has released a statement to the fans of Flyleaf thanking them for welcoming her to the Flyleaf family.

Hello new friends and fans of Flyleaf,

I just wanted to take a moment and say Hello! The past couple of weeks since the announcement of my taking over as lead vocalist of Flyleaf have been exciting and busy. I started last week with a trip to Texas where the guys practice, and we began rehearsing the fourteen-song set we played this past Saturday. We decided to play a secret show after our friends Signal Rising for 400 awesome fans and family. Ever since Flyleaf invited me to sing with them I have been listening to all three albums and couldn’t be more pumped to share the stage with my new friends.

After the anticipation of the whole day a couple weeks ago, I was so anxious to finally get on stage and spend time singing my new favorite songs with you guys, the fans! The ones who make Flyleaf music possible! Instantly I felt the love you all share with the band and their music. You really received me with open arms and I appreciate that. Songs like “All Around Me,” “Fully Alive” and “I’m So Sick” we sang in unison, while some of you even knew some of the brand new songs like “New Horizons” and “Call You Out.” A couple of my personal favorites off the new album are “Broken Wings” and “Freedom.” Such powerful, moving lyrics and a blast to sing live. Basically, I just wanted to say I know a change in vocalist can be a difficult thing to grasp, but I believe in the music of Flyleaf so deeply that I feel blessed to step in and continue playing this music for you all. I have already seen a glimpse into what is so special about this band, their friends, families, and you, the fans. I pray I can give back at least a little of what I received from playing my first Flyleaf show. It was a truly wonderful and exhilarating experience. So, thank you to everyone who was there. I can’t wait to get on the road and meet you all!

From my heart,
Kristen May

For more of the latest news on Flyleaf, head to their official siteFacebook and Twitter pages. Make sure to pick up a copy of New Horizons on iTunes & Amazon now!

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Flyleaf Announce Departure of Singer Lacey Sturm, ‘New Horizons’ Available Now for Pre-Order

Flyleaf Announce Departure of Singer Lacey Sturm, ‘New Horizons’ Available Now for Pre-Order

A&M/Octone recording group Flyleaf announce the departure of long time singer Lacey Sturm today. The band’s final album with Lacey, New Horizons, will be out on October 30th on A&M/Octone Records and is available now for pre-order.

Flyleaf are pleased to announce that Kristen May formerly of the band Vedera will be stepping in as the band’s lead singer for future tour dates in support of New Horizons. Fans can direct questions to the band on Twitter (@flyleafmusic) for a live Q&A tonight at 8pm ET using the hashtag #NewHorizons.

“When listening to New Horizons, I would hope that fans would be able to lose themselves in the story of each of these songs and form their own connections to them—as we have in the band,” remarked bass player Pat Seals. “There is a great deal of our souls laid bare on this record, and I feel like it really comes through on the tracks.”

Flyleaf

Seals also commented on Lacey’s departure, “As Flyleaf begins this new cycle to introduce our third record New Horizons, we feel our fans should know that Lacey has stepped down as lead vocalist of the band. Her statement below expresses her reasons for leaving. In order to continue on with New Horizons, Sameer, Jared, James, and myself have selected Kristen May, formerly of Vedera, to assume lead vocal duties for future tour dates. We are excited for this new chapter in the history of Flyleaf, and hope that our fans will accompany us as we continue on this journey to bring hope and inspiration through our music. We would like to thank everyone who has supported us over the years and we are looking forward to playing for you again soon.”

Lacey commented on her departure, “I have been beyond blessed to be in Flyleaf for the past ten years, touring with 4 amazing men and the Flyleaf crew, whom I love like my flesh and blood family. They have all given so much. It took everyone on our team to make the beauty in Flyleaf possible. I am honored to have met so many wonderful people who love Flyleaf music all over the world. Your incredible stories continue to inspire me. I am very thankful to have recently become a mom to one of the greatest blessings of my life, my son Jack. You may have also heard that we recently lost our brilliant sound engineer, Rich Caldwell, in a devastating car accident. Now, more than ever, I understand the phrase Memento Mori. I understand that, for me, living life to the fullest in this season means to step down as the lead singer for Flyleaf. I wish the best to Jared, Pat, Sameer and James and I know that as I continue to pursue the highest heights of what I am created for, it will free them all to pursue that for themselves too.

The guys will continue to tour and write music together. I’m so very grateful that they are able to do what they desire and that there is a beautiful and talented, warm hearted girl like Kristen May to sing for them. Because of this, you will all get a chance to see a new Flyleaf show and support the new album.

As I take this first step on a new journey, I pray that each one of you would pursue your highest calling with reckless abandon as well, understanding that sometimes the fullness of life comes in doing things that are only understood by you, God, and the special people God has put in your life that truly love you for you… not for what you do, but for who you are. I love you guys so much and in many ways, I will stay in touch. May God bless you all with healthy hearts, full of courage to weather the journey to your own New Horizons.”

Flyleaf has also just released the second single from the album titled “Call You Out.” The song is the follow up to the title track from the new album.

Their debut self-titled album has now sold 1.4 million units and is certified Platinum. “All Around Me” reached the Top 10 on Top 40 Radio. Flyleaf has also charted six singles at modern and rock radio.

Flyleaf’s last album, Memento Mori, debuted at #8 on the Billboard Top 200 album chart. “Again” from the album went all the way #2 at Modern Rock Radio (Breaking through the #1 and #3 spots held by Muse).

New Horizons is available for pre-order beginning today on iTunesAmazon and Official Band Store Pre-Order is going on now. CD booklets include a fold out poster with artwork inspired by Pat Seals’ woodcarving. iTunes pre-order includes exclusive bonus track “Mama” and an instant download of “Call You Out.”

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Cory Lamb Featured On “The Stay Close Tour,” Album Now Available!

Cory Lamb Featured On “The Stay Close Tour,” Album Now Available!

Pop-rock singer-songwriter Cory Lamb is on the rise thanks to the release of his debut album, Break the Cycle. Cory worked on the record for two years in Los Angeles with the help of producer Andy Duncan (founding member of OK Go), and has caught the attention of actor Stephen Baldwin who helped produce Cory’s first video. Cory is preparing to release his new single, “Safe In Your Arms,” which fans can download mid-February.

The video for the album’s second single, “It’s a Good Day,” was directed by Life Garland (Lil Wayne, Jessie J) and is streaming now over at YouTube. The video has been in rotation across the country at locations such as McDonald’s, Hot Topic, Taco Bell, and more. Cory and his band will also be joining Fireflight and Rapture Ruckus on their upcoming “The Stay Close Tour” (tour dates below), kicking off at the end of January with stops across the US.

For more on Cory Lamb, visit his official site at www.corylamb.com as well as his Facebook and Twitter pages. Fans can now pick up a copy of Break The Cycle on iTunes, distributed by Universal/Fontana.

The Stay Close Tour with Fireflight & Rapture Ruckus

Jan 27th- Murray Hill Theatre-Jacksonville, FL
Jan 28th- Vintage Youth Ministries – Biloxi, MS
Jan 29th- New Orleans Arena- New Orleans, LA
Jan 30th- Coteau Baptist Church- Houma, LA
Feb 10th- United Methodist Church- Marshall, MO
Feb 11th- Houston High School- Houston, MO
Feb 16th- First Redeemer Church-Cumming, GA
Feb 17th- Christ Chapel Sportstown-Macon, GA
Feb 25th- Hyde Park Church- Lumberton, NC
Feb 26th- TBA- Raleigh, NC
Feb 28th- The Vine- Dunn Loring, VA
Mar 1st- Elkview Baptist- Elkview, WV
Mar 3rd- Secrest Auditorium- Zanesville, OH
Mar 7th- The Extreme- Alva, OK
Mar 8th- The Blue Room- Canton, TX
Mar 9th- First Assembly of God- Midland, TX
Mar 10th- Trinity Worship Center- Pharr, TX
Mar 11th- TBA – Corsicana, TX

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