I admit it. When Newsboys reached the rap in their rendition of Jesus Freak, I was hoping to hear a familiar voice start spitting, “I saw a man with a tat on his big fat belly.”
But it was indeed Michael Tait that saw his new band’s rendition through.
Then, a couple hours later, Tobymac repeated Jesus Freak in his set, delivering the rap in his familiar voice.
One of the first questions that popped into my mind when former dc talk singer Tait joined Newsboys was how he and former talk partner Toby would divvy up the old act’s classics when they shared the same stage.
Wednesday night, we discovered there’s room enough in an evening for two renditions of Jesus Freak. There was no loss of energy in the crowd when Toby launched into the searing guitar break near the end of his show. The earth did not open and swallow the Ichthus Festival for the double dip, and lightning didn’t strike the stage – kinda impressive, considering Toby’s record with Ichthus weather.
The pairing of the old dc talk bandmates was also an interesting study in band dynamics.
Newsboys has some colorful characters, particularly in super cool guitarist guitarst Jody Davis and clown prince drummer Duncan Phillips. And what can you say about a keyboardist named Frankenstein, Jeff Frankenstein? But this is clearly Michael Tait’s band now. He was the expressive, emotional leader, he had command of the tunes, he was running the show.
Toby also was running his show while developing one of the most colorful bands on the road. It sort of brought to mind Black Eyed Peas in terms of a diversity of voices and fun.
Ichthus has to deem its first “community night” a success. The hillside in the amphitheater was packed and locals seemed to respond to the deeply discounted opening night set. Ichthus executive director Jeff James indicated last night there will be a community night next year.
- Look for a slide show from community night later this morning.