There are very few Christian artists out of Sampson County that have received national radio play — even less have been solely based in Christian rock. But Kings Krest, based in Roseboro, is about to change all of that.
Band members, Lee Bradshaw (drums), Brandon Richards (bass), Kenny Tatum (guitar), Ben Farris (guitar) and Eddie Stephens (vocals), had their single “Pain” break into play lists on radio stations in Alaska, Michigan, Alabama, southern California and Miami. In fact, the south Florida station, The Call, placed the song at No. 1 as their top requested song in a market of 4.1 million listeners.
“It was pretty amazing,” said Stephens. “It is overwhelming … to be honest, I am still in a daze. I just thought, now this is really going to happen.”
Richards sent out the EP to stations all over the nation in November 2011 and waited.
“We started the band four years ago,” explained Stephens, “so by no means are we becoming an overnight success. We went through a lot of band members before we got to where we felt we were just gelling together.”
To that end, the band worked hard, got solid material together and hit the studio with producer John Harold of Kinston.
What came out of those sessions was a solid batch of Christian songs with an major edge.
“It is a top notch production,” asserted Stephens. “When we heard it, we were really pleased with it. You know, people always said to me it wasn’t possible. I have kids, a wife, and a full-time job, who would have ever thought a bunch of regular, country boys could ever do something like this? But you know what, nothing is beyond your reach. That is how I felt the first time I heard it; it was incredible.”
And that is exactly the point.
“I want to change history,” emphasized Stephens. “There hasn’t been a hard rock band like this that has come from this area. We want to do that.”
The band is making that happen. They have done interviews across the nation and are working hard to make sure they will be around for a while. Their efforts have been paying off. In addition to the large market radio play, at least two record labels have shown interest.
“It is because the music is good,” said Stephens. “The songs are about real things that we are all going through. Our songs may have a harder edge, but they have a good message. When we do shows, we rock, but we have a good time. This is what we have dreamed about doing (as a career) and we continue to work to make sure that what we are putting out is quality work.”
Currently, the band is playing around the area. Curiously, they do not play a lot of shows in Sampson County.
“Well, we do play a lot of clubs, churches and other events,” Stephens acknowledged. “We are a little harder, so the churches here aren’t really looking for that type of thing, but we have played a few here, like Grove Park — we play everywhere we can. When we do shows, we have the lights, the smoke, the whole deal. It is very exciting and we make it that was because we want to do this full time.”
The group will play at the Church of God in Nashville on March 16 with other gigs lining up quickly.
“We have been asked to play a lot of places,” he noted,” epecially now with all the airplay we are getting. We are also working on new music, too. We put the best we have in all of it because the music means that much to us.”
And that is where the band’s name, Kings Krest originates. “It means stamp of approval,” Stephens said. “We know that God works everything out. If He wants it to happen, it will. He is in control … right now, we feel like we got God’s approval and that feels really good.”
For more information on the band or a sample of their music, click on to: www.reverbnation.com/kingskrestrock or the band’s Facebook page at facebook.com/ kingskrestrock.
To reach Doug Clark call 910-592-8137 ext. 123 or email to email@example.com.