The Color is proud to announce the release of their new radio single "After My Heart" (LISTEN HERE) to all digital retail outlets today. Produced by Jeff Owens (Tenth Avenue North), Patrick Mayberry (Joel Vaughn, Landry Cantrell, Mack Brock) and Bede Benjamin-Korporall (Life.Church Worship, Coby James, Hillsong Young & Free),
"After My Heart" is a celebratory anthem that serves as an encouragement and reminder that, no matter where we are at in our lives, God is in constant pursuit of our hearts.
THE COLOR is a Christian Pop band from Canada. Though new to Dream Records, these bona fide road warriors have been touring North America for the past 9 years and have garnered great success in the industry with their singles 'Surprise' and 'The Kind Of Man', both of which charted in the Top 50 on Billboard's CCM Audience Airplay (Surprise at #27 and The Kind Of Man at $42. Boasting an energetic live show and songs that emanate hope, The Color was the recipient of the 2018 Juno Award and were named 2017, 2018 & 2019 Group of the Year at the GMA 'Covenant Awards'.
Q: Thanks for doing this interview with us. Who is the Color? Briefly tell us about your journey.
Thank you for having me! The Color is Jordan Janzen (that's me - lead vocals), James Shiels (keys/guitars/bgv vocals), Larry Abrams (lead guitar/bgv vocals) and Tyson Unrau (drums). It's also worth noting that Ryan Hildebrand is our sound tech and he has been with us from the very start. We have a great team!
We have been a band for over 9 years, which is wild! When we started the band in 2012, it came out of a season where we felt like we had given up on music as a career. A few years prior, James and I had put together a band and we attempted to chase 'the dream'. We had written a bunch of songs, we had done some touring but, to be quite honest, it was mainly rooted in a desire to be known and seek attention. In 2009, God called both James and I away from the band and into full-time youth ministry.
This was an incredibly important season for the future of The Color as God really did a number on our hearts. It was a season of growth and maturity. It was also the place that James and I reconnected on the music front. We began to meet once a week to talk about life in ministry. It was here that we would discuss what God was teaching us and, inevitably, these conversations turned into the songs that made up our first record.
Since then, it has been a slow but steady incline that has allowed for this calling to be a career. That has included 4 album releases, a whole lot of touring (120 shows a year since 2015), multiple independent CCM radio releases and, most recently, a partnership with DREAM Records out of Los Angeles, CA. Practically speaking, it's also taken a lot of grace and support from our incredible wives and families who also believe that God is working through this ministry.
Some of the more notable recognitions have been winning both "Group Of The Year" and "Artist Of The Year" three years in a row at the 2017, 2018 and 2019 GMA Covenant Awards as well as winning the 2018 Juno Award for "Gospel Album Of The Year".
Q: Why do you call yourselves the Color?
We call ourselves 'The Color' because color brings life to the world around us, and that is what we want to do with our music, and with who we are as people.
Q: How would you describe your style of music? What sets your music apart from the numerous Christian bands out there?
That's the consistent question, with an ever-evolving answer. We lean pop, without question. Part of that is because we feel like it compliments the best parts of my vocal, and the other part is that we want to make music that is as accessible as possible, and pop is a far reaching genre.To set ourselves apart from the numerous Christian bands that are out there, we try to start with a foundation of a great song, and then we are really intentional with making sure our personalities, within the band, are being heard.
Everyone in the band has worked hard on their craft, so we take the time to allow that to be evident on these new songs. Larry's a great lead guitar player, so you will hear more guitar parts in our stuff than your typical CCM record. I've been intentionally working with a vocal coach to find, and lean into, the characteristics of my voice that make it stand out in quality and uniqueness. I think we are capturing that. You will hear three-part harmonies because three of us can really sing. I'd say that, in this season in particular, our music is set apart because we are not trying to sound like everyone else, which has been a learning process. Be yourself.
Q: I have read in your bio that you have recorded with Michael W. Smith. How did that happen? What was it like recording with Michael?
Yeah, that was wild! We were in Nashville, recording a few songs at the legendary Castle Recording Studios, with a producer by the name of Seth Mosley. While we were tracking our songs, Seth got a call from Michael's team saying that they had to get a song recorded ASAP, because it had been chosen to be on the Dick Clark Production: 'The Passion: New Orleans's' soundtrack. Because of the quick turnaround, they were going to be staying late to track it in the evening and Seth asked if we'd be interested in singing back-up vocals. That was not an opportunity we were going to turn down so we came back that night and it was, hands down, one of our career highlights, to date. Michael was actually there, which wasn't a guarantee, and he was so kind and intentional. He took the time to chat with all of us and we got to fanboy and take some photos. He was really encouraging to the band, and was really enjoyable to be around. And then we got to sing! He's a legend and a pro. It was one of those once-in-a-lifetime moments.
Q: Tell me more about your new single "After My Heart." How did the song come about?
This song came into existence in the midst of our transition to writing songs over Zoom and Houseparty. We've been working on new music for a while and, once Covid hit, we felt like there were more songs that needed to be written. So, we had to get creative and video chat writing was the answer. We wrote this with our friends Jeff Owen (Tenth Avenue North) and Patrick Mayberry and it's one of the first times we've written a song that made us dance while we wrote it.
Along with making you move, it's a song that we hope will serve as an encouragement and reminder that God is in a constant pursuit of us. So often we try to be or look good enough, but that's not the point. God wants us where we are at, including our sin and our messed up lives, because He's the one that redeems that. Of course, God wants our obedience, but he's not after perfection, He's after our hearts.
Q: Are you guys currently working on an album? What can we be expecting in the near future?
We are!! We've been writing for the past 2 years and we are nearing the point of being ready to release a full album. This is our first release with Dream Records, which is very exciting for us. In terms of a release date, it's always risky to speak out an actual day out, because there are so many variables involved, but the current goal is Fall 2021!
Q: On social media, you have also been offering free nights of worship. Tell us more about these worship events and when will the next worship event be?
That's a great question! As you mentioned, we did offer a free night of worship, which was a part of our 'Past, Present & Future Online Concert Series', that was available throughout the month of February. As we cannot physically tour in this season, we thought we would try something new, in an attempt to continue connecting with our fans and to get them excited about our new music.
Each week we would release a new show with a different theme and one of the themes was 'The Present - A Night Of Worship'. The online concert series is a ticketed tour, but after our first worship night we received a flood of responses saying that the time of worship was so needed and that it was a really important time for a lot of people. You see, here in Canada, we have not had in-person church services for a long, long time.
After hearing and seeing the feedback, we recognized that this couldn't be about ticket sales, that people are desperate for connection and that they are craving worship...so we offered it for free. And a LOT of people took part. It was very cool. Sometimes we can get caught up in trying to create fresh, new content when what people really need is to be fed spiritually. In terms of when it's going to happen again, we will be looking at doing something similar in the next couple of months.