Having served as a full-time youth pastor for over 25 years, Casting Crowns’ front man, Mark Hall, continues to draw inspiration from the well of real life. “Because we have the honor of walking with people in our churches, we get to see what people are going through – the issues that are impacting everyone now,” shares Hall. “It’s in these situations that ideas are born for what we all need to hear right here and right now.” The local church has been the base for Casting Crowns’ music since their label debut release in 2003. With more than 10 million records sold and the title of Billboard’s top-selling act in Christian music since 2007, it’s still where the music is created. Hall and his bandmates – Juan and Melodee DeVevo, Megan Garrett, Brian Scoggin, Josh Mix and Chris Huffman – continue to work in ministry in their respective churches. The local church is the heartbeat of the band and the songs are an outpouring of that. The Very Next Thing, Casting Crowns’ latest offering, is a collection of intimate songs as well as upbeat, fresh sounding tracks with impactful lyrics centered around identifying and acting on what’s right next to you.
“I think we all believe the gospel,” says Mark Hall, “we all want it, we’re just not sure what we’re supposed to do next. We’ve got this idea of an awesome walk with Jesus out there somewhere, and we’re looking for the bridge to get over to it. Serving God isn’t this giant dream a year from now. It’s not this thing He’s going to have you do in a month. It’s right now. Following God is the next word of love that I need to speak to somebody, the very next heart that needs to be encouraged. Ministry isn’t on Sunday; it’s not on a stage. It’s you, where you are, doing the next thing God tells you to do.”
Along with this over-arching message, there’s also a deeply personal element to the record. Hall wrote the poignant and powerful “Oh My Soul” after being diagnosed with cancer in 2015. His first worry was about his family and he turned to the scripture in Psalms – Why so downcast oh my soul, put your hope in God.
“I remember this scripture from David – it was just repeating in my head over and over,” Hall says. “The song “Oh My Soul” is really an argument with myself. I’m speaking truth to myself. The roots of my faith are talking to the storm in my life. For me, one of the most special moments in the song is the bridge because you hear the argument happening. I really wanted to paint the picture of that inner struggle that we’re all dealing with. We know what the verses say and we know how the storm feels. It’s hard to bring those together. But one thing about digging deep in the word is that when your roots are deep, they can’t be ignored. Even when the storm comes, and as shaken as I was, it felt like the storm kept just slamming up against something solid inside of me that wouldn’t let it control me. It was the roots of my faith. It was the truth that I had been soaking in and pouring into others for so many years. I got to speak scripture to myself.”
Casting Crowns has produced some of the most compelling songs of his generation. Songs like “Voice of Truth,” “East to West,” “Lifesong,” “Until the Whole World Hears,” “Courageous” and “Thrive.” On The Very Next Thing, the band continues to encourage and inspire believers with songs that help strengthen their relationship with God.
“You can follow God from right where you are,” Hall says of the new album’s central theme. “In the condition you are in right now, you can follow Him and He will make you His.”
For Jordan Feliz, 2016 has been an incredible and breakout year for the talented singer/songwriter. He received major awards nominations from the GMA Dove Awards in August (New Artist of the Year, Song of the Year and Pop/Contemporary Recorded Song of the Year – “The River”) and at the K-LOVE Fan Awards in June for Breakout Single of the Year (“The River”). Feliz also released his first full album, The River, in April and it debuted at No. 4 on Billboard’s Christian Albums chart. The first single from the project, “Never Too Far Gone,” became his second No. 1 song. His mega-hit tune, “The River,” released in 2015 and was the first single from his debut Centricity project, Beloved. The song remained No.1 for ten weeks on Billboard’s National Christian Audience Chart and seven weeks on the CHR/Hot AC Chart. It remains in the Top 30 on iTunes Christian Singles chart. Feliz hails from Central California and began his professional music career as the frontman for a mainstream rock band, before becoming a solo Christian artist, moving to Nashville and signing his first label deal with Centricity Music in 2015. For updates on Feliz: www.jordanfeliz.com, www.facebook.com/jordanfelizmusic, www.twitter.com/jordan_feliz.
(Saturday) 7:00 pm - 10:00 pm
Divots Event Center
4300 WEST NORFOLK AVE NORFOLK, NE
On September 13th, 2017 Foreigner’s catalog sales were celebrated in Business Insider
magazine as hitting the Top 40 among the Best Selling Music Artists of All Time. The Beatles
were justifiably #1, but Foreigner came in ahead of Britney Spears, Bob Dylan, Phil Collins,
Prince, Queen, Bon Jovi and Def Leppard.
With ten multi-platinum albums and sixteen Top 30 hits, Foreigner is universally hailed as one
of the most popular rock acts in the world with a formidable musical arsenal that continues to
propel sold-out tours and album sales, now exceeding 75 million.
Responsible for some of rock and roll’s most enduring anthems including Juke Box Hero, Cold
As Ice, Hot Blooded, Waiting For A Girl Like You, Feels Like The First Time, Urgent, Head Games,
Say You Will, Dirty White Boy, Long, Long Way From Home and the worldwide #1 hit, I Want To
Know What Love Is, Foreigner continues to rock the charts more than 40 years into the game
with massive airplay and continued Billboard Top 200 album success. Foreigner also features
strongly in every category in Billboard’s Greatest of All Time listing. Catalog sales often eclipse
those of Led Zeppelin, AC/DC, the Rolling Stones, the Who, Def Leppard, Van Halen, Aerosmith
and most of their Classic Rock peers. (Source: Nielsen SoundScan week ending 8/3/17).
Founded in 1976, Foreigner’s debut album produced the hits “Feels Like The First Time,” “Cold
As Ice” and “Long, Long Way From Home.” The album Double Vision followed, as did a string of
hits like “Urgent,” “Juke Box Hero” and “Waiting For A Girl Like You.” Those songs
helped give Foreigner’s next album, 4, its impressive run at #1 on the Billboard chart. At the
zenith of 80’s sound, Foreigner’s fifth album, Agent Provocateur, gave the world the incredible
#1 global hit,” I Want To Know What Love Is.” This musical milestone followed the record-breaking
song “Waiting For A Girl Like You.”
At Foreigner’s core is the founder and Songwriters Hall of Fame member Mick Jones, the
visionary maestro whose stylistic songwriting, indelible guitar hooks and multi-layered talents
continue to escalate Foreigner’s influence and guide the band to new horizons. He reformed
the band after a 2002 hiatus and selected lead singer Kelly Hansen to help write an inspired
new chapter in the history of Foreigner. One of rock’s greatest showmen, Hansen is known for
his innate ability to connect with the crowds. As a frontman and lead vocalist, Hansen is
among the most respected, consummate professionals in rock and roll. With a 35-year career
that spans almost every area of music, from the role of lead vocalist to producing and
engineering, Kelly has the unique ability to advance and excel when faced with new challenges.
Mick also brought in bassist Jeff Pilson, multi-instrumentalist Tom Gimbel, guitarist Bruce
Watson, Michael Bluestein on keyboards, and Chris Frazier on drums. An unprecedented new
level of energy lead the group to a re-emergence of astounding music that speaks to long time
Foreigner fans and younger generations. With renewed vitality and direction, Foreigner hit the
Billboard charts again with the 2005 release of their live greatest hits album, Extended
Versions. Can’t Slow Down followed in 2009 and entered the Billboard chart in the Top 30,
driven by two Top 20 radio singles, “In Pieces” and “When It Comes To Love.” To follow was
the release of the band’s 3-disc set, Feels Like The First Time, which included an acoustic CD
with an intimate and unique re-interpretation of many Foreigner classics, studio re-records by
the new lineup and a live performance DVD showcasing the group’s exceptional live energy.
Foreigner experienced another surge in popularity when several of their hits were featured on
the Rock of Ages soundtrack, including “I Want To Know What Love Is,” “Juke Box Hero” and
“Waiting For A Girl Like You” – more songs than any other one band on the soundtrack.
Hollywood quickly took note, and several more tracks were featured in hit films “Anchorman
2,” “Magic Mike” and “Pitch Perfect,” sending Foreigner downloads up 400%. The video game
industry was soon to follow with the blockbuster release, “Grand Theft Auto V”.
Downloads continued to soar after their worldwide #1 hit “I Want To Know What Love Is” was
featured as the 2015 season finale end title of “Orange Is The New Black.” Foreigner hits have
also recently been included in such primetime TV shows as “The Late Show with Stephen
Colbert” and “The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon,” among others. Hot Blooded is on the
trailer for the Angry Birds movie and has been streamed more than 6 million times. The high
visibility of Foreigner’s songs continues to introduce the band’s music to a whole future
generation of fans, exemplified by Jack Black’s version of “Juke Box Hero” in Kung Fu Panda 3.
“I Want To Know What Love Is” featured in the summer 2017 box-office #1 “The Hitman’s
Bodyguard” and “Waiting For A Girl Like You” is featured in Netflix’s “Stranger Things”.
In June 2013, Mick Jones was inducted to the Songwriters Hall Of Fame. A multi-talented and
multi-dimensional “musician’s musician,” Jones has also written songs such as “Bad Love” with
Eric Clapton and “Dreamer” with Ozzy Osbourne, and produced records for others including
Billy Joel’s Storm Front and Van Halen’s 5150. A Grammy and Golden Globe-nominated
songwriter, Jones is the winner of the prestigious British Ivor Novello Songwriter Award for
“The Flame Still Burns”, the soundtrack music for the film Still Crazy.
In May 2014, Atlantic Records Chairman Craig Kallman presented Mick Jones with RIAA gold
and platinum digital awards for six Foreigner songs. These awards signify 500,000 and
1,000,000 downloads of Foreigner hits. That is more individual awards than any other heritage
rock band, and an illustration of Foreigner’s resonance in the digital era.
The year continued with Foreigner’s headline run in The Soundtrack of Summer US
amphitheater tour. The hits compilation album of the same name was released to coincide
with the tour and immediately hit the Billboard Top 200 chart, peaking at #64. For most weeks
during the tour, Juke Box Heroes joined The Soundtrack Of Summer in the Billboard Top 200
making Foreigner the only Classic Rock band to have such a remarkable presence in today’s
Foreigner made headlines again in the summer of 2015 while gaining legions of new fans by
joining mega act Kid Rock on his “Cheap Date: First Kiss Tour,” rocking amphitheatres and
stadiums across the United States.
Foreigner kicked off 2016 with a much hailed unplugged appearance on The Today Show on
February 11th followed by a short run of New York area sold out acoustic shows culminating
with an epic concert at The Lincoln Center as part of the acclaimed American Songbook Series.
These appearances coincided with the release of Foreigner’s first ever live acoustic album In
Concert: Unplugged. The band’s royalties are donated to JDRF (Juvenile Diabetes Research
Foundation) and the album is available exclusively via Amazon. Foreigner recorded this unique
acoustic album at a once-in-a-lifetime private concert hosted by Edsel B. Ford II on August 24,
2015 at the Ford Motor Company Conference & Event Center in Detroit, MI. In October 2016,
Foreigner performed for the very first time at New York’s iconic Carnegie Hall with a sold out
acoustic show. The show highlighted the band’s ongoing relationship with the GRAMMY
Museum’s initiative to promote music education in our nation’s schools. It included an a
cappella contest among New York high schools who competed for a $5,000 prize donated by
2017 marked the celebration of Foreigner’s 40th anniversary. The Warner Music Group
released a double CD set ‘40’, which includes 40 songs recorded between 1977 and 2017. The
album spent several weeks on the Billboard Top 200 chart and it features two tracks recorded
especially for this release, ‘Give My Life For Love’ and a new version of ‘I Don’t Want To Live
Without You.’ The album spent nine weeks in the Billboard Top 200 chart. The US anniversary
headline tour played 40 shows across the United States where the band was supported by
Cheap Trick and Jason Bonham’s Led Zeppelin Experience.
In April 2018, earMUSIC will release FOREIGNER WITH THE 21ST CENTURY SYMPHONY
ORCHESTRA & CHORUS, a live recording of Foreigner’s first ever orchestral shows last summer
in Lucerne, Switzerland. The band will perform an orchestral concert series in the US in the
spring and later in the year, they will play orchestral shows in Australia and New Zealand. A
highlight of those shows is an appearance at the iconic Sydney Opera House.
This summer, Foreigner will headline a major Live Nation US tour with Whitesnake and Jason
Bonham’s Led Zeppelin Evening as support.
August 2018 sees the launch of Juke Box Hero, the Musical in Canada. Based on the book
written by the prolific writing duo, Dick Clement and Ian La Frenais, responsible for The
Commitments movie and the Tracey Ullman TV show, the show will feature many of Foreigner’s
16 iconic Top 30 hits.
Foreigner is one of the most viewed YouTube Classic Rock artists with weekly viewings
frequently hitting the million mark (Source: Next Big Sound).
It’s been said that lightning never strikes the same place twice. However, it does in the case of Tesla.
Over the course of their thirty-year career, the critically acclaimed iconic Sacramento melodic hard rock quintet—Frank Hannon [guitar], Brian Wheat [bass], Jeff Keith [lead vocals], Troy Luccketta [drums], and Dave Rude [guitar]—sold more than 25 million albums and performed to sold-out crowds across the world. Their journey kicked into high gear with 1986’s platinum-certified debut, Mechanical Resonance, which solidified them as a household name and yielded signature anthems such as “Little Suzi,” “Modern Day Cowboy,” “Cumin’ Atcha Live,” and “Gettin’ Better.” Celebrating the record’s 30th birthday, the boys from Sacramento unleash Mechanical Resonance Live! which will be released on August 26, 2016 (Tesla Electric Company Recordings/Mailboat/Frontiers).
Recorded in the Spring and Fall of 2015 while on tour with Def Leppard, it spruces up the classic 12-song track listing with 21st century live renditions. Bringing everything full circle, they owe its genesis to the suggestion of a close friend and fan Phil Collen of Def Leppard…
“Phil came into our dressing room to have a talk with us one night,” recalls Frank. “As a true fan of Tesla, he suggested that we record a live rendition of Mechanical Resonance. It was just a brilliant idea. We immediately agreed with him.”
“We pride ourselves on being great on stage, and we were really able to capture that,” says Brian. “It’s a bit of déjà vu. 30 years ago, we were on tour with Def Leppard promoting Mechanical Resonance. 30 years later, we’re touring with Def Leppard and promoting Mechanical Resonance!”
For the first time since the record’s original tour cycle, Tesla dusted off deep cuts like “We’re No Good Together” and “Before My Eyes.” Mixed by Brian in his own studio, the recordings pack a powerful and passionate punch by preserving the original performances.
“Some of these live renditions are better than the performances on the original record,” continues Brian. “It’s just us doing what Tesla do best, playing live. I wanted it to be as in-your-face as it could be.”
“It’s completely honest and real,” Frank concurs. “When you listen to it, you’ll hear the imperfections and nuances, because it’s one-hundred percent us.”
As much as it honors their legacy, Mechanical Resonance Live! hints at Tesla’s future as well. The band includes a brand new track, “Save That Goodness,” produced and written by Phil Collen. Energized by bombastic guitars, robust grooves, and an epic refrain complete with a choir call-and-response, the song remains a welcome addition within their storied catalog.
“It’s definitely reminiscent of Tesla’s style, because it’s got a positive message in the lyrics, and the vibe is really upbeat,” Frank exclaims. “I can’t wait to play that live.”
“We love the way Phil works,” Brian goes on. “You’ll hear more of that quality down the line. It’s got the ‘Little Suzi’ good time vibe.”
The 21st century has become something of a renaissance for Tesla. Most recently, 2014’s Simplicity bowed at #14 on the Billboard Top 200. The group ignited ABC’s Jimmy Kimmel LIVE! in addition to scorching stages at festivals such as Rocklahoma, Graspop Metal Meeting, and Sweden Rock Festival as well as the cruise Monsters of Rock! Remaining committed to philanthropy, they hosted a benefit for The Station nightclub fire in addition to playing a rally for the Sacramento Kings. They simply never stop.
As they prepare to cut their ninth full-length album with Collen at the helm, Tesla take a big leap forward as they glance back on Mechanical Resonance Live!
“I want people to feel like Tesla is still full of energy these days,” concludes Frank. “That’s it.”
“This is a band we started in Frank’s garage when I was 18, and Frank was 15,” Brian leaves off. “I’m proud we’re still standing this many years later. It’s a pretty cool place to be. I’d love for people to think, ‘That band has managed to stay in the game for 30 plus years, and they’re still playing great shows and putting out quality music.’ Now, just turn the shit up when you listen to it. It was made to play loud.”
(Sunday) 6:00 pm - 10:30 pm
Divots Event Center
4300 WEST NORFOLK AVE NORFOLK, NE