GREENVILLE – On Jan. 13 JoyFM will showcase locally-grown artists Adam Cappa, Tommy Renfro and The Quest, all of whom are making waves in the Christian music scene, said Renfro. The concert will benefit JoyFM, a listener-supported radio station, said Dan Franks of JoyFM, which gets approximately 75 percent of its funding from listener donations.
“My personal goal for this was to fund at least a week of production for JoyFM,” said Renfro. “It’s kind of our way of saying ‘thank you,’ because they were a big part of mine and Adam Cappa’s success. I just thought, instead of writing a check, why not do a show?”
Memorial Hall, the venue for the show, will open its doors at 6 p.m. and the show will begin at 6:30, Renfro said. There are two types of tickets available: VIP tickets are $15 pre-sale or $20 at the door, and general admission tickets are $10 pre-sale or $15 at the door. The goal, said Renfro, was to keep ticket prices low so that everyone could attend.
“We wanted to keep ticket prices affordable,” Renfro commented. “With the VIP tickets, people get preferred seating and there’s going to be a meet and greet with photo opportunities before the show and possibly after, as well. General admission is first come, first served, so for $5 more, it really is worth it.”
The planning team decided on Memorial Hall as a low-pressure venue, said Renfro, thinking it would draw more of an audience than a non-secular venue such as a local church. This will be Renfro’s third concert at Memorial Hall, and he commented that he was excited to be on stage there again.
“The thing that’s neat about this is how many talented local people we have here,” said Franks. “Adam Cappa is with a big national label and getting a lot of national airplay; Tommy is with a good label, and The Quest is trying to break out of the regional bubble, too. It’s great to have this event that’s going to highlight the great talent we have on a local level.”
Adam Cappa, originally from Richmond, Ind., is up for New Artist of the Year for the Welove Christian Music Awards, said Renfro. According to his website, the 25-year-old never expected a record deal, but a new talent, and a joy for serving youth, changed that.
“God began to write a lot of songs in my heart,” Cappa stated on his website. “Before I knew it, I felt the Lord had called me to pursue ministry on the road full time. I sold my car, bought a van, and started laying for teen camps full time.”
Renfro began his musical ministry around the same time as Cappa, he said.
“Sometimes you get to a point in your life where you look back and you say ‘I’m not exactly sure how I got here,’ but it’s a blessing to be in every position I’m in. Neither of my parents were musicians, but they were extremely supportive of what I did,” said Renfro. “People ask me all the time, ‘How do you get where you are?’ The truth is, you gotta work at it. To get anywhere in life, you gotta work for it. God is going to open doors, but you have to work and put legs on those prayers.”
Renfro is currently a teacher at Tri-Village Local School District, and said that a fallback in education was all he knew, since his parents, aunt and uncle are all teachers. When he got to his college practicum, he said he realized that was what he wanted to do as well.
“It’s the greatest vehicle to help direct and guide the future paths of children,” said Renfro. “I don’t necessarily think you ever stop teaching. If my career goes up one more notch then there’s a good possibility that I have to drop one full-time, and pick up another full-time, but that doesn’t mean I’ll ever stop teaching.”
“If I were to start a tour deal, obviously I wouldn’t be able to be in the classroom doing 65-70 dates a year…I love what I do. If the door opens for me to do music full time, that’s great. If it doesn’t, I’m already happy because I love being a teacher, so either way I’m happy with what’s going on right now and the doors that are open in my life,” Renfro continued.
The Quest got their start at EUM Church in Greenville, with Chad Lemons on guitar, Todd Matthew on bass and vocals, Nathan Miley on keyboard, cello and vocals, and Tim Yount as lead vocalist, this group is working to break out of Darke County, said Franks. The Quest has a vision of reaching people with a message that purity is possible, and plan to do so through God-honoring music, according to their website.
The businesses in Darke County have really stepped up to the plate, and they’ve all been really excited, said Renfro of the sponsors for the Jan. 13 show; the money that the sponsors have put in will go towards putting the show together, and anything above and beyond that, Renfro said, will go towards Christian radio, including helping his career, he said.
“This is kind of a big launch for me, we’re in a crossroads where the record label wants me to finish the album, but that’s going to take more finances than people really understand. This event will hopefully be a big deal, so that we can continue on,” said Renfro. “Most people think that once you’re with a national label everything is given to you, and that’s not the case.”
Sponsors for the even include: Iddings Auto Glass, Inc., Johnston Chiropractic, State Farm Insurance, Western Ohio Chiropractic, Inc., Paulus, Inc. The Floor Store & More, New Madison Insurance Agency, Inc., Edwin F Nickol, Inc., Braund Funeral Home, and Zechar Bailey Funeral Home.
“We want it to be an atmosphere that’s kind of like an NCAA tournament type atmosphere; a sold out crowd that’s excited to be there. Something that’s great for Darke County, not just for the concert, bring your family to town, support local businesses, support the sponsors. This is all about us being a great community in Darke County,” Renfro commented.