Pampa has a new band, making original music with the intent of reaching people. Grace & Wages and its members are not newcomers to the music industry, all the members have a spotted background with music and music making. The co-lead vocalist, Justin Mathenia has been a part of bands and labels, mostly being the guy that writes the songs and let’s them go into the market to be picked up. But after meeting with the fellow members at Trinity Fellowship Church, he felt the same calling as the rest to make original music close to the hearts of the band.
“Grace & Wages is just a band, we don’t have illusions of stardom,” Mathenia said. “We all have different backgrounds with music; we just wanted to make music. It’s not worship music, but it can be played and sung in a worship setting. We just wanted to make good music with a good message.”
The band was formed about a year ago when Justin and his wife attended Trinity. Krissa Hall, who is the Worship Leader for Trinity Fellowship - Pampa, began working with Justin writing new original music for the band to bring to life.
“I am just a mom and a singer, doing what I love. About a year ago, we were all sitting talking and felt called to start writing music, and everyone kind of came together in different ways,” Hall said. “It was just such a special thing and felt that God put us together. We committed to start writing songs and have now made around 30.”
The band is composed of Krissa Hall the co-lead vocalist, Justin Mathenia co-lead vocalist, Macy Smith female vocalist, Coleby West lead guitar, Tyson Fristoe on drums, and Seth Foster with the bass and organ accompaniment. Everyone has a variety of skills musically, but Justin has a deeper understanding of the music industry, having been apart of various bands, both as a song writer and performer.
“After meeting everyone, it just felt wrong not to start writing our own stuff,” Mathenia said.
Justin does a lot of the song writing, but it is largely a group effort. The entire band adds in to songs, Krissa and Macy work majority of the time with Justin over new music. The three band members make up new music, then take it to Seth and Coleby who arrange the music to be recorded as a new track. The band works alongside a recording studio in Amarillo that engineers and distributes the music.
“A lot of bands have conflict over wanting to be like the other, this is different,” Mathenia said. “It’s just easy, everyone is okay and happy with what they do in the band.”
The band released one EP [Extended Play] album, titled Grace & Wages, on Jan. 7. In the few months it has been out, the band has amassed nearly 500,000 total plays. The music can be found on all streaming platforms including Apple Music, Spotify and Youtube. The newest addition to the bands discography, “Oh, I know” was released April 1 and is available now.
The original songs from the band are not just worship songs. The objective of the music is to be easy listening songs for anyone anywhere, but they do use some of the songs both released and unreleased in worship for church.
“Some of these songs came from personal testimony. We are all writers and players, so we don’t plan on stopping [making music]. We plan to make more albums.” Mathenia said.
To listen to the music of Grace & Wages, look for them wherever you stream music. More information on the band can be found on the social media accounts for the band, @Graceandwages or visit the bands website. www.graceandwages.com
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