It’s easy to say there are no true musicians left in today’s cookie‐cutter industry. Not
many will wrong you for blaming the bigwig suits for your lackluster iTunes playlist.
What’s not easy? Finding the real artists. Discovering uncompromised talent that
bares their artistic ambition with every recorded sound. These are the acts whose
innocence perches them higher – allowing them to see further and clearer than a
through a label’s dollar sign eyes.
A band like Sons of God, who boast a bold name and original sound, would slip right
under most listeners’ radar outside of Christian music. Fronted by multi‐talented
Aaron Newberry, Sons of God is on the brink of recording their first full‐length
album with Producer Jared Fox at Fox Den Studios in Nashville, TN and beginning an
extensive 2011 tour schedule. Things weren’t always on the up for Aaron though.
In fact, Sons of God nearly didn’t make it to this point.
Penniless, bitter, and scattered, Aaron was going to give up on the path he had
started three and a half years ago. He remembers, “I was tired of being a broke
musician with lots of opportunities and feeling like I had nothing to show for it.”
Aaron was recording all the instruments and funding Sons of God by himself. Although he now has a full band to record the upcoming record, over‐drafting his checking account is still a concern.
“I’m making little to nothing making music, and it’s hard not to want money.” Aaron
continues, “I don’t want to be rich, but sometimes it gets so tough. I have friends
(like former counterparts in Chasing Victory, and Brighten) that are extremely
successful and here I am still struggling to make ends meet.”
Thankfully, Aaron recognizes this struggle as inspiration for Sons of God’s mission
to make music that evokes emotion not only found in Aaron’s voice, but also in
the intricate instrumentation reminiscent of Explosions in the Sky, or The Receiving
End of Sirens.
This epic quality separates Sons of God from other Christian acts, and it stems from
having devoted band members that wholeheartedly believe in the band’s message.
You can disagree with their beliefs and their mission can turn you off, but you can’t take anything away from their integrity as a band that lives their art day in and day out. As Aaron states, “I’m pouring myself out in these songs.” That is one of the most
refreshing things to hear in an industry full of fakes and put‐ons, and fixating on the
Christian rock scene, Sons of God bring honesty to a message that has been
tarnished and mocked by greedy opportunists.
On whether modern Christian rock music is moving in a positive direction, Aaron
explains, “I’ve met a lot of Christian artists who I would say are legitimate, that are
living that lifestyle… guys like Switchfoot and Leeland. But I have met more artists
who are more about the money and the fame.” He recalls, “It was kind of a
disappointment growing up having this idea that all the Christian artists I listened to
were legitimate, then realizing that legit Christian artists are few and far between.”
Aaron believes that if more Christian artists, and really all artists in every
venue/genre, were more transparent and willing to exploit themselves, that their sincerity could make a real difference in someone’s life.
That is Sons of God’s vision. They want to connect with their fans in ways most
bands neglect. Their only official release, The Genesis Prologue EP, is offered for
free on the Internet and the same will go for their future full‐length. Aaron justifies
this strategy by asserting, “We want to let people in. I think as we continue to tour
into 2011 and release our full‐length that our fan base will grow itself. When you
offer your music for free, with no strings attached, it is easy to get people to listen to
it, and when it turns out to actually be good, more people will want it and more will
Imagining Sons of God’s first full‐length being well received is not difficult by any
means – but for them to connect with a large fan base filled with people of various
faiths and backgrounds is questionable. Everyone has been at a rock show that is
interrupted by a sermon of sorts. It can be confusing and awkward. For Sons of
God, the vision is different. Aaron declares, “If we take time to connect with people,
then that will be what really makes a difference.” He adds with heartfelt intent,
“We’re not the kind of guys to shove something down your throat, because people
need Jesus more than Jesus needs them. I’m not trying to market or sell Jesus to
anyone; I’m just trying to be Jesus to as many people as we can. A whole lot of that
involves respect and love. And I would never respond positively or optimistically to
someone putting me down for something I believe or something I didn’t believe. We
just want to offer people a hope outside of what they think they’ve found already, or
not. If they are happy where they are, then that’s for them to decide.”
Check out Sons of God on MySpace: www.myspace.com/wearesonsofgod