Meet theKey, one of the musical acts who performs at the Jeffersonville Fall Festival the weekend of October 26-28.
After winning the statewide “All Access Music Search” presented by the Georgia Lottery, theKey took the exciting grand prize trip to Hollywood, CA to record at the Capitol Studios Tower. To beat out thousands of acts in the competition, theKey blended their use of colorful layering, driving beats, catchy melodies, and thought-provoking lyrics that define their signature sound. Fresh off of their debut album release, theKey is working hard to share their tunes with new music lovers everywhere. On stage, theKey brings nothing less than a well-produced, engaging performance, showcasing their music that has drawn comparisons to artists like Coldplay and Matchbox 20. Their 13-track debut album, “This is goodnight, this is goodbye” is available on iTunes, Amazon, and thekeymusic.com.
Clay Scott, the lead singer from theKey, took some time with 13WMAZ to answer a few questions.
13WMAZ: theKey has been around now a few years. When did you get started and how long have you performed with this lineup?
theKey: We got our start at Mercer University in Macon Ga, during our sophomore year, almost 4 years ago.
13WMAZ: Now that your debut, “This is goodnight, this is goodbye,” has been out a couple of months, are you still touring on the material or has the band started putting together the next project?
theKey: We a primarily playing our songs from the album at our shows, though we are starting to incorporate some of our new songs as well. We are always thinking ahead and working on new music. It's funny, because before we even released our current album, we had already started recording new songs that will be on the next.
13WMAZ: What is that process for you? When does the new stuff start bubbling up? When do you start testing it out on crowds?
theKey: The song writing process is one that is constantly developing for us. When we first started as a band we would just get together to practice and write songs on the spot. Those songs were created quickly, and without much critical thinking on our behalf. We came up with some good stuff that way, and it worked for us for a while, but as we have grown as a band that has changed a little. Now we really spend time pre-recording new songs, and working out every detail of the songs until we are completely satisfied. Now we aren't afraid to let a song go if we feel it's not good enough, which is such a hard thing to do.
Music is always bubbling up in my mind. It never stops. I try to carry a recorder around with me to capture ideas, but have recently filled the recorder and my phone past capacity. Its always embarrassing when the recorder starts playing in my pocket in public, and those around me get to hear me mouth drum solos and guitar leads... Oh man, it's happened too many times. The trouble this time around is going to be deciding what is good, and what isn't.
We will test a song at a show as soon as we feel like we can perform it in a non fan deterring manner.
13WMAZ: That’s not to skip over your debut though. What inspired the album?
theKey: The album was inspired in our early years chiefly through our faith in Jesus, but also through our own experiences. In a world filled with stuff, and endless distractions we wanted to urge people to wake up, and think about what matters in life, and what doesn't. The album is a journey of faith that starts broad with the first few songs by asking questions about what's the point basically, and gradually narrows to the last song "for my King," which says the point is Jesus. He caught us when we were falling, paid a debt we can't afford before God, and sets us free.
13WMAZ: In an age when you can fit a ton of songs on an album, how hard is it to narrow it down to 13 tracks?
theKey: Well the first time around it wasn't too hard to decide. We only cut a song or two and decided to have 13 songs instead of 10 or 11.
This time around, however, there will be much to chose from.
13WMAZ: Where are you in your career as a band? What do you think the next year holds?
theKey: I think we have come a long way, and have learned so much in these past 4 years. We have played many shows, and have had some incredible opportunities. Our goals and ambitions are different now than when we first started. Now most of us are married, and have a kid. We have spent countless hours in the studio, on the road, and in the practice room. We want to be successful as a band, and to us that doesn't mean becoming a big deal, or being admired, but rather it means being faithful to what God has called us to.
In this next year, we will be focusing much more on perfecting and recording new music, as well as boosting our presence online. Our latest album is the culmination of the past four years of music. We have grown so much as a band in these past four years, and can't wait to let our fans hear what that sounds like!
13WMAZ: Your bio says the band’s foundation is your shared faith in Jesus Christ. Can you talk about that balance between your faith and making music that maintains a mainstream appeal? What role does your faith play in the creation of the music?
theKey: Our faith in Jesus is the reason we make music, and the reason we have come together as a band. Every song we write is lyrically rooted in our faith. We have dubbed our music content vs. style approach as the "switchfoot approach." We aren't like most christian bands you hear on most christian music stations. Though we support those groups, and think there is a need for congregational style worship songs, we just have a different style. We write music in the style we love the most. Bands like Muse, Coldplay, Matchbox20, and Keane are among our strongest collective preferences.
I feel that music is a vehicle for a message. It's a unique way of saying something in a way that words alone can't. The message is the most important part of the song. The style of music is what I think plays the main role in who is going to hear that message. We feel that God wants us to reach our generation where they are.
Visit the band online at thekeymusic.com to learn more about their new album "This is goodnight, this is goodbye"