TheTimesTribune.com, Corbin, KY

Entertainment

July 2, 2012

Casting Crowns performing at The Arena tonight

CORBIN — By Jeff Noble / Staff writer

During their current tour across America, the award-winning contemporary Christian/Christian rock band Casting Crowns are asking people to “Come To The Well.”

They’ll bring some songs from their current album of the same name, and perform other songs from their previous acclaimed albums tonight at The Arena in Corbin. The show starts at 7 p.m.

Their Come To The Well tour is winding down, and Casting Crowns will be coming into Corbin after appearing Thursday night at KingsFest 2012. The three-day Christian music event is being held at Kings Dominion amusement park near Richmond, Va.

Many of their fans in the region have waited since early this spring when tickets for tonight’s show went on sale. Up on the hill, folks at The Arena say those fans are eagerly anticipating the moment when the talented and versatile band steps on the stage this evening.

“Ticket sales have been pretty good. We still have a lot of good seats left for the show tonight,” Josie Tyree of The Arena staff said.

Tickets for the concert are $54, $29 and $16. If you have a group of 15 or more people going to the show, you’ll receive a group discount where the $29 ticket price will be $24. People ages 2 and over must have a ticket. The show is presented by Sugar Spring & G. Carnes PD/Arms of Love.

Casting Crowns’ current album, Come To The Well, was released in October of last year. Their latest song, “Courageous,” is featured on the album, and was released as a music video last June and as a single last July. The video promotes the film “Courageous” and is a pop rock/rock and worship album with influences from pop, country and adult contemporary music.

Reviews have been good. On the website indievisionmusic.com, Jonathan Andre wrote, “Casting Crowns have recorded a solid, thought-provoking album, about how society wants the temporary fix, when Jesus is right there asking us to drink from His Well... This band has surpassed what I had thought was capable and if you are like me, you will certainly be amazed about what Casting Crowns can do.”

“The 12 new tracks are packed with hard-hitting lyrics that, if examined closely, could be controversial. However, it’s (Mark) Hall’s gentle delivery of truth that allows for effective ministry to break through,” said Lindsay Williams of GMC-TV.

And Jonathan Faulkner of Alt Rock Live said, “Fans will be blessed, challenged and encouraged by Casting Crowns commitment to leading the Body to the cross.”

On May 20, during a live telecast on ABC, the band received two 2012 Billboard Music Awards. One was for Best Christian Artist, while the second award was for Top Christian Album, for Come To The Well.

At their website, www.castingcrowns.com, band members answered questions about themselves. Here’s some of them.

When asked how hard it was to manage life on the road versus home, singer, songwriter and youth minister Mark Hall answered, “Yes. Keeping family, church and Crowns in that order can often be a struggle. There are times it gets a little upside down. We pray for God’s wisdom and direction and try to be more proactive than reactive when it comes to our schedules.”

Pianist, keyboardist and vocalist Megan Garrett’s reply to what was the first Christian album she was given or bought was, “I inherited (a nice word for ‘stole’) the Amy Grant ‘Age to Age’ album when I was really little. I used to dance around to ‘Fat Baby’ — it was my favorite.”

Lead guitarist and vocalist Hector Cervantes answered this on the question about his current favorite musical artist/group, and why. “Switchfoot, Needtobreathe and The Afters can do no wrong for me. If either one of these bands decided to sing ‘This Is The Song That Doesn’t End,’ it would be the coolest song ever. EVER!”

Guitarist and vocalist Juan DeVevo made this comment when asked who was his favorite super hero. “Captain America. He doesn’t shoot things from his hands or control metal and he never fell in any ooze. He just punches and kicks... hard.”

Violinist, cellist and vocalist Melodee DeVivo (Juan’s wife) was asked what’s the best advice someone had given her about working with youth groups. Her reply was, “Be transparent. If they know you struggle or have struggled with the same things, they will more than likely listen to what you have to say to them. But make sure your advice has some scripture to back it up.”

Bass guitarist and vocalist Chris Huffman answered this on the question about a largely unknown skill that one of the other Crowns members has that should be shared with everyone. “Juan is an awesome videographer/film editor. We filmed some videos for a sermon series on dating using inspiration from Napoleon Dynamite and it is almost a sequel to the original movie. Yeah, he’s that good!”

The funniest thing that happened to drummer Brian Scoggin while on the road with Casting Crowns? He said this. “There is tons of inside comedy that takes place when we are all together. That kind of stuff just develops the more time you spend with each other. Although, there was a time when Megan shot water out of her mouth/nose and sprayed nearly everyone on the bus. That stands out in my mind as being pretty hilarious!”

And you don’t hear her sing, but she’s out there with the group. Melanie Hall is road manager, and Mark’s wife. She said when asked if she weren’t in Casting Crowns, what would she be doing now, “I would be a full-time home school mom and youth pastor’s wife. Just like I was before this rollercoaster started.”

The group began in Daytona Beach, Fla. in 1999 as a student worship band. They were led by Hall, along with other original members Cervantes and Juan and Melodee DeVevo. In 2001, they added Garrett and Huffman, along with drummer Andy Williams. They moved to the Atlanta suburb of Stockbridge, Ga. that same year. Williams left the group with the band’s blessing in 2009, and was replaced on drums by Scoggin.

In their early days, the band released two independent albums on CD, partly as an outreach project for youth in the Atlanta area. They would soon catch the attention of Mark Miller, of the country group Sawyer Brown. He signed Casting Crowns to his new label, Beach Street Records, and helped co-produce a new album, “Casting Crowns” with popular contemporary Christian music artist Steven Curtis Chapman. That album was released in 2003, and made them one of the fastest selling debut artists in Christian music history. It went certified platinum in 2005. They received their first gold certification for a single for the song “Who Am I” from their debut record.

That year of 2005 was a memorable year for Casting Crowns. First, they were voted CCM (Contemporary Christian Music) Readers’ Choice Awards “Favorite Band,” “Favorite New Artist” and “Favorite Album.” And a big honor came that same year, when they were awarded a Grammy Award for Best Pop/Contemporary Gospel Album of the year, for the album, “Lifesong.”

From 2004-2011, the band has a total of 18 Gospel Music Association “Dove Award” nominations. They won the GMA Dove Award 16 times.

After their show in Corbin tonight, Casting Crowns will continue their Come To The Well tour Saturday night at “Friend Fest,” a Christian music festival in Napanee, Ind. Napanee is located 30 miles southeast of South Bend, in the northern part of the Hoosier State. After that, it’s some rest until the tour picks up in mid-July. It will also give the band some time to come down from traveling and touring. And this note, four members of the group — Mark, Melodee, Juan and Chris — currently minister at Eagle’s Landing First Baptist Church in McDonough, Ga. They play during the contemporary worship service on Sunday mornings.

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