The Kingsmen are releasing their much anticipated new album More to the Story today. Classic, powerful, and filled with the gospel spirit that has carried the Kingsmen far beyond their western North Carolina origins over more than 60 years of performance, The new album offers a spirit-lifting, crowd pleasing jewel in the ever-growing catalog of the legendary group.
Produced by the award-winning and GRAMMY-nominated Jeff Collins at Crossroads Studios, the set features several already-released singles surrounded by a fresh group of songs given both traditional and contemporary Southern Gospel arrangements.
You can order, add or save More To The Story HERE.
We are honored to be able to catch up with Brandon Reese (Road manager/drummer), Alan Kendall (Baritone), Chris Jenkins (Tenor), and Chris Bryant (Lead) for this exclusive interview.
Q: Thank you so much for doing this interview with us. I believe the Kingsmen are celebrating their 65th year in Christian music, looking back, what do you think help the group hold together all these years?
Brandon Reese: Ironically, I think that is an easy question to answer. We have always strived to put Christ first in our ministry and I believe He has rewarded and blessed us to continue also to use us as tools to deliver his message all over the world in music.
Q: Over the years, how has the music of Kingsmen remained constant and/or change over time?
Brandon Reese: We have always tried to stay true to our own style. Sometimes people ask me what is the Kingsmen's style? I've always said "well we are the Kingsmen so whatever music we make is Kingsmen style", smiling.
Q: For yourself, what are you most grateful for as a member of Kingsmen?
Alan Kendall: I am thankful that God would not just give me salvation, provide me a beautiful family, and open a door to serve Him in music....but to work with a group I whom I have admired, and have been watching just about all my life. He is far better to me than I deserve!
Q: You guys have a new album coming out. When you were choosing songs for "More to the Story," what type of songs were you looking for?
Alan Kendall: One thing about the Kingsmen I have noticed is that the search for good songs with meaty lyrics can continue until the literal day of studio time. Styles have never really dictated our song choice for two reasons. Firstly because the Kingsmen have always managed to successfully tackle a wide variety of music styles (convention songs, country-styled ballads, then there are songs in a class by themselves like "The Judgement" and "Wish You Were Here"), and also because our producer Jeff Collins always knows how to incorporate that "Kingsmen sound" into the final product. The main focus is the message, and how the lyrics will best resonate with the listener.
Q: Why did you name the record "More to the Story"?
Chris Jenkins: As the songs came together we realized two things. First, there are several songs that remind the listener of the story of the gospel of Christ and applied those truths to our daily life. Secondly, The Kingsmen are celebrating 65 years this year (2021) and we want our listeners to know that despite a global pandemic that put a temporary halt to live concerts, we are not finished and this year more than ever we are committed to wave the banner of our faith higher and make His name known! That's the central message within "More To The Story."
Q: How had the pandemic affected you in the making of this new record?
Chris Jenkins: We began choosing songs during the first few months of the pandemic while we were off the road from touring. During Summer 2020, we began the recording process by finalizing song choices, arranging, and tracking all done via zoom with everyone either in separate rooms or even separate states! It was amazing how technology has allowed us to continue to produce and release music in times of shutdowns and social distancing. With that said, we are ready to share these powerful songs with a new outlook to our audiences all over the world, both in person and across the sound waves.
Q: What are some of your personal highlights in the making of this album?
Chris Bryant: The entire process behind "More To The Story" was truly a unique experience. The time and preparation that went into making this project is something that will always make this a special recording for me. I feel that in the end, the songs are exactly what we needed to share with everyone at this moment. It would be easy to look at the obstacles that we all have faced this last year or two as a negative experience but in the end, I believe that it all helped us to put together an awesome collection of songs.
Q: If there's a take-away message you want listeners to grasp after hearing this album, what would it be?
Chris Bryant: This entire project is full of overwhelming hope and encouragement. From the first track reminding us that we are all a part of something larger than ourselves. To the countless reminders of God's faithfulness through the stories that have been written down through time. To the message of hope that no matter what storm you may be facing, He is in control. "More To The Story" is sure to remind anyone of the peace and joy that can only be found in Jesus.