Caryn Haller

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August 9, 2012
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A night of praise comes to Lampe Park

With the desire to bring the community together for a night of fellowship and music, Valley Christian Fellowship and InLine Music Productions have teamed up to bring praise night to Lampe Park on Aug. 17.

"It's a chance to get together with your neighbors and fellowship," events coordinator Dennis Nau said. "It's fun, family-based entertainment."

Playing that evening are Carson Valley bands Once Refused and LifePoint Church praise and worship band, Reno-based Josiah Hejney and the featured band, I Am "They," based in Carson City.

"Christian music is good, clean, wholesome music. It's not organ music, it's contemporary rock music with electric guitars, drums, keyboards and violins," Nau said. "It's not hymns, but you can understand the words. It appeals to young and old alike."

I Am "They" started playing together at Calvary Chapel in Carson City in 2008 at a regular event called Solomon's Porch, which until recently, is also what the band was named.

In March of 2011, the band signed with the management company InLine Music Productions, and changed their name.

Drummer Sara Palmer explained that the new name comes from John 17:16, "They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world."

"All of John 17 is Jesus talking about his disciples and he calls them 'they' throughout," she said. "We made it personal."

The group consists of Sara's husband, Adam Palmer, plus Matt Hein, Stephanie Kulla, Justin Shinn, and Bobby Shiehler, who all grew up and still live in the Carson City and Reno area.

"We live to serve our Savior, so our music is just the natural overflow of what we are most passionate about," Palmer said. "This desire started with Solomon's Porch and He has only grown it since day one. The secret is keeping our hands out of it. Let Him do the moving, let His hands be on the tools and He'll build His kingdom. We are His to use."  

Since signing with Inline, the group has played two to four shows a month in Nevada and California, but continue to play Solomon's Porch at Calvary Chapel every other month.

The next Solomon's Porch is "A True Hallowed Eve," on Oct. 31 which marks five years since the first event.

They have opened for Christian recording artists Matthew West, Chris August, Todd Agnew, Jason Castro, Bebo Norman, Brandon Heath, Big Daddy Weave and have also played the Monterey and Del Mar Spirit West Coast festivals.

"It is an incredibly humbling experience to share the stage with such talented musicians. We are blessed beyond measure for each opportunity and walk away truly inspired after every show," Palmer said. "We also have made some great friends with the artists we have shared the stage with, and just finding that common connection with other disciples of Christ from different parts of the country has been a great encouragement."  

Their debut album, The Prelude EP, available on iTunes, provides the listener with a collage of seven original songs, each displaying what the band's intent and goal is through their music: worship.

"Our heart is just to encourage the church as a whole to worship their Maker because we believe Jesus Christ is the only One who is deserving of our praise," Palmer said. "We use music as both an expression of our own devotional lives as well as a means with which we can connect the listener with the Savior whom we sing about." 

The band Once Refused got their start in 2005 as Valley Christian Fellowship's Saturday night worship team.

During the last 18 months, the band has focused on songwriting, playing local events and ministering to the youth at China Spring Youth Detention Center.

"We really enjoy working together collaboratively and seeing how what we create together seems to turn out far better than what any of us can do on our own," guitarist Wayne Johnson said. "What we have come up with seems to be a fresh blend of various styles and very different than most other up-beat Christian worship music."

Along with Johnson, Once Refused band members are Matt Simpson, Austin Sims, Scott Blaha, Tami Simpson and Jordan Walker.

Recordings of their songs can be downloaded from

LifePoint praise and worship band plays Sundays during regular church service.

Josiah Hejney plays on the worship team for Living Stones Church in Reno.

The food tent begins selling at 4 p.m., with music beginning at 5 p.m.

Praise night is free and open to the public. This is the second in a series of praise nights with the next one Oct. 19 at a venue to be announced later.

For more information, call Nau at 265-4100.

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The Record Courier Updated Aug 14, 2012 02:35PM Published Aug 9, 2012 04:04PM Copyright 2012 The Record Courier. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.