Second Cup Cafe: Jars Of Clay

Jars of CLay, Second Cup Cafe, JM jarsofclay.com

The albums of Jars of Clay regularly top the Contemporary Christian charts. But they say their music is not really about religion, but just inspired by it. They are performing this weekend at The Saturday Early Show Second Cup Café.

The band got started in 1995 when their debut album exploded onto the scene with sales of 2 million and a Grammy nomination. The album crossed over to nearly every format – alternative rock, pop, and gospel.

With their new CD, "The Eleventh Hour," they continue to deliver their message.

Singer Dan Haseltine, guitarist Matt Odmark, keyboardist Charlie Lowell, and guitarist Stephen Mason perform with an innovative blend of harmonious folk, techno and alt-rock stylings.

Jars of Clay emerged out of the St. Louis college music scene. All four of them began writing together in the basement of a college dormitory.

In the wake of beating out 200 other bands in a national competition, Jars of Clay's humble surroundings changed quickly. The band's name, symbolizing the frailty of mankind, became a vital reminder to exercise humility in the light of critical acclaim. Jars of Clay signed a major label recording contract in 1994. Shortly after, they began producing their self-titled debut record with a little help from guitar legend, Adrian Belew (David Bowie, Talking Heads, King Crimson, NIN).

"The Eleventh Hour," produced by Jars of Clay and mixed by Jack Joseph Puig, is a collection of anthems centered around the concept of human longing.

On this record, Jars of Clay aims to reconnect itself to the passions and convictions, the sorrow and the joy that permeate the human condition of faith and faithlessness.

Says Odmark, "When you listen to this record, I hope you don't hear the noisy vocabulary of religion. I hope you hear music that is because of faith rather than about it. I hope you hear our lives in each and every note, sound and lyric. I hope you hear the joy and the heartbreak of friends wrestling to sing in harmony, not perfectly, but believably. I hope this collection of songs will remind you how to believe."
  • Ellen Crean

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