The Swift: The North Carolina pop rockers

Monday 12th September 2005

Three pop rockers from North Carolina are THE SWIFT. Tony Cummings reports.

The Swift: The North Carolina pop rockers

The return to popular music fashion of piano-driven rock has put North Carolina's The Swift onto the Christian radio airwaves. Both their Flicker Records albums 'The Swift' (2002) and 'Today' (2004) have produced a string of hooky pop rockers while in singer/pianist Britt Edwards they have an emotive and engaging frontman. The group consist of Edwards, Mike Simons (bass) and Trae Drose (drums). The guys have been playing together for several years though originally gigged and recorded under the rather unwise moniker of Puddleglum - a name taken from The Silver Chair in CS Lewis' classic Narnia series. According to Edwards, "Bands with weird names are a lot of time associated with hardcore bands." The new name was Simons' idea. On the Puddleglum independent album 'Strange' (2000), Simons and Edwards recorded a hidden track, which was attributed to "The Swift." So, when the band needed a new name, the guys didn't have to look far.

Signing with Flicker Records the band completed a leg of America's popular Festival Con Dios tour followed by a spring tour with Audio Adrenaline and MercyMe. But it's more hands-on ministry which the band are particularly passionate about. Said Edwards, "When you do a concert, there's only so much ministry you can do. The Lord has always led us to do more retreats and camps and spend more time with the people. I don't necessarily think that Christian music has lost its focus, I just think that as a band and as ministers, we need to make sure we're making more of an impact than just leading a devotion and praying."

On their 'Today' album the trio partnered with producers Jason Burkham and Nathan Dantzler (Audio Adrenaline, Tree63) for the 10-song collection which features other highlights such as the Beatle-esque "Revolution", the ballad "Now That You've Found Me" and the modern praise of "You Burn". Said Simons, "It's about the Spirit of God as a fire. It spreads like a fire and continues to grow." Another outstanding song on 'Today' is "Alive In Love", a slick pop song based on the concept that believers are dead in sin but alive in Christ. Said Edwards, "We are created people. But we are dead and useless in our sin. Only through his love are we made alive."

In 'Today' The Swift have fully achieved their stated aim to make easy-on-the-ear pop rock with spiritual bite. "We're so excited about the content of this record," continued Edwards. "We've really tried to make what we do accessible and we hope we can make some new listeners." CR

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