You know what I think is really interesting? It’s the fact that the most successful people in the world never, ever start out on top.
For instance, Warren Buffet’s first job was a newspaper delivery boy. Oprah Winfrey was a grocery clerk. Even Saturday’s Faith & Family Night Headlining Band at Canal Days, the Sidewalk Prophets, started out small. Just down the road on I-69 at Anderson University, lead singer Dave Frey and guitarist Ben McDonald started their musical careers by taping microphones to the ceiling of their dorm room and posting files to the (then) legal file sharing site, Napster.
Before the Sidewalk Prophets take to the Main Stage on Saturday night, June 8th, you’ll have a chance to see an area band with similar humble beginnings. Live 4:1, comprised of Darlene Bush, brothers Greg, Jon, and Kaleb Krempel, Natasha Perrine, James Saunders, and Chris Kindlesparger, will bring their unique 7 piece blend of praise and worship music to the Main Stage in Schnelker Park beginning at 4 pm.
Live 4:1 began in 1996 when many of its core members were only in the 5th or 6th grade, Darlene Bush told me during an interview on April 8th. At the time, the founding members were all part of the praise band called Next Wave at Huntertown United Methodist Church, and Bush and Debbie Krempel (the mother of Greg, Jon, and Kaleb) worked with the group, encouraging them to rehearse and sing as much as possible.
By 2004, the core members of the group felt called to make a true commitment to where they felt God was leading them. A suggestion by a friend referencing Ephesians 4:1 (I, therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, implore you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling with which you have been called. Ephesians 4:1 ) led to the name Live 4:1.
Live 4:1’s current project, an independent release entitled Let It Rain, has imprints of the band’s heart all over it from the tracks contained on the CD to the design on the jacket. “This project really reflects who we are as a band and where we are at musically,” says Bush, a vivaciousness reflecting in her voice and eyes.
Musically, the band credits such diverse influences as MercyMe, Casting Crowns, Israel & New Breed, Michael W. Smith, Fred Hammond, Hillsong, and Vineyard. The band also credits, rather fully embraces, the diversity that makes the band so unique and distinctive.
“We are from different ethnic and church backgrounds; but God created a melting pot, blending us all together to create a Christ-centered sound that touches the lives of people everywhere. It hasn’t been an easy task, especially being a young group with the view society has of youth today,” said Bush, “but we have a message we want people to hear! Although we could be in the world taking part in all it has to offer, we choose to serve God. We desire to serve in whatever way He wants us to.”
After nearly 17 years together for some of the member of Live 4:1, you might think that performing might start to become a little monotonous.
You’d be mistaken.
Actually, this summer may be one of the most exciting times in recent memory for the band for a lot of reasons. First, nearly half of the band is getting married this summer. (Don’t worry, they planned around their appearance at Canal Days!) Live 4:1 is also working on new material, and talking about going back into the studio to record some new music, says Bush.
“Wherever, however He leads, that’s happily where we are going,” says Bush.
Wherever they end up, Live 4:1 remains committed to being true to the message within the music. When I asked Bush a question I was recently asked about whether or not Christian music is as good musically as mainstream music, she replied, “I would point people to Chris Tomlin. Steven Curtis Chapman. Israel Houghton. Fred Hammond. These are artists that are all about the message, not the sound. It’s the same thing with us. It’s all about the message. The message is the most important thing. I can get you bopping your head and rocking, but if you’re not hearing the message, it means nothing. The message has to be heard, then the bopping and the rocking will come.”
Vocalist Natasha Perrine agrees. “It has been placed on our hearts to minister to the lost and encourage the doubtful,” she said.
“We’re all about the ministry; that’s what Live 4:1 is all about. Nothing else matters,” said Bush.
Live 4:1 will play the Main Stage in Schnelker Park on Saturday, June 8 from 4-6 pm, with a free Meet & Greet autograph session immediately following their set.