The three dudes in dc Talk—Michael Tait, Toby McKeehan and Kevin Max—have wanted to do solo albums for some time. Well, here they come—starting with the July 3 release of Empty (ForeFront), the solo project from Tait. The CD includes 12 tracks that showcase Michael's love for rock 'n' roll. The title cut, Michael says, shows our need for God: When we're empty, he fills us. (The other two solo CDs, Kmax's Stereotype Be and tobyMac's Momentum, are due in August and October. Sample all three solo projects on dc talk: solo, a 7-song EP which released in April.)
When I heard the first 30 seconds of Avalon's new CD, Oxygen (Sparrow), I thought I'd accidentally cued up the wrong disc. Alternative rock? But that first song, "Wonder Why," quickly moves into more familiar territory for this award-winning quartet—great foot-tappin' pop and those signature harmonies. You won't find the world's deepest lyrics on this album—the title cut's chorus goes, "You are my oxygen, I breathe You in, I breathe You out. … You are what life's about"—but you'd be hard-pressed to find a smoother, more ear-pleasing album, and one that clearly points to God's great love.
That Voice Sounds Familiar …
If you dig the rich, soulful voice of dc Talk's Michael Tait, you'll totally love Soul Shower (True Tunes), the debut CD from Mike's big sister Lynda Randle. There's a little of everything on this gem: rock, funk, soul, gospel, blues, and more. Lynda's kid brother helps out with background vocals on a few songs, including the groovin' title track. Check it out at www.truetunes.com, and listen to MP3 samples from these other True Tunes artists:
Sundry, The Toughest No-Brainer Yet. Modern fun punk from an Atlanta band, featuring guest spots from Third Day's Mac Powell and Smalltown Poets' Michael Johnston.
Kato, Seasider. One of the best-kept secrets in British pop/rock and one of the more popular bands at Christian festivals throughout Europe.
Various artists, True Tunes Worship Alternative. A nice collection of songs pointing to our good God.
Pop group FFH was originally called Far From Home. And you can't get much farther from home than outer space, which is where the group went recently—sort of. Joe Tanner, an astronaut on Space Shuttle Endeavor, took FFH's Found a Place CD on a recent mission.
Closer to home, the group has started a new fan club called the FFH Home Team. Members ($22 US & Canada, $27 elsewhere) will receive a T-shirt, autographed photo, and much more.
Learn more about it at www.ffh.net.
A New Vibe
There's a new boy band on the block: True Vibe, which recently opened a few concerts for Destiny's Child. True Vibe was formed by Jonathan Lippmann, one of the founding members of 98 Degrees before that group rocketed to stardom. Jonathan left 98 Degrees to pursue acting opportunities before joining True Vibe. Pictured above (photo in print copy only) are TV's Lippmann, Jordan Roe, Nathan Gaddis and Jason Barton, with Destiny's Child members Kelly Rowland, Beyonce Knowles and Michelle Williams.