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The best kept secret in music


"The Providence Band"

The Providence Band

By Slobodan Juric
Wednesday, February 16, 2005

Who's who: Originating in Spring Hill, The Providence Band is made up of Jimmy Chisholm, 23, lead singer and acoustic guitarist; Dean Pratt, 22, backup vocalist and rhythm guitarist; Jarred Coats, 19, lead guitarist; Jon Hanck, 18, bassist; and Kevin Brown, 19, drummer.

God's influence: The group of five strongly believes in God's influence in their everyday lives. According to the band, they're "trying to write music with the help of God that will reach a vast audience."

What's up with the name? The search was long. After looking at the dictionary and the Bible, the "definition of providence meant destined by God," as Hanck explains it, perfectly describing the group's feelings about God's power in music.

They remind you of: "Jimmy's World and lot of Christian bands."

Style and genre: The all-original songs are written about relationships and how they're connected to God. Although the band's paramount belief in God is evident in each song, it still classifies its genre as "pop rock." Coats, with a laugh, adds that "we've yet to play a strip club." They have primarily played youth groups and church events in Pinellas, Hillsborough and Hernando counties.

Band's influence: Specific bands don't come to mind, but a lot of "praise and worship" bands have roles in its music.

Random fact: The band has yet to see anyone walk out of a venue because of the mention of God in its lyrics, even at bars.

Listen in: Log on to to sample Honestly Believe .

- The St. Petersburg Times - 2/16-2005

"Christian band rocks a growing audience"

The 5-month-old Hernando homegrown band Providence is drawing big time attention from fans and several strong bookings.
By LOGAN NEILL, Times Correspondent
Published June 7, 2004


SPRING HILL - A couple of nights a week the normally quiet fellowship hall at the First Assembly of God suddenly breaks into a roar of sound as the band Providence runs through its rehearsal.

The hard crunch of power guitar chords and heavy drum beats rocks the small meeting hall as the band's lead vocalist closes his eyes and sings a heartfelt melody.

Call it a joyful noise.

Though the volume may be cranked up, it's the message that band members hope rings loud and clear.

"Our music is very positive," says 22-year-old lead singer Jimmy Chisholm. "We want people coming away from our shows thinking they got something extra from our music."

Chisholm, along with guitarists Jared Coats and Dean Pratt, drummer Kevin Brown and bass player Jon Hanck make up the Hernando County-based Christian rock band. Though just a little more than five months old as a musical unit, the band has quickly gained attention in Central Florida in recent weeks.

Much of that buzz came has come by way of the group's recent second place finish at the Pierfest 2004 battle of the bands competition in St. Petersburg. Though Providence was the only Christian act of the 10 finalists, the judges thought highly of the band's energetic blend of pop and punk sounds. Naturally, the young band was elated by the results.

"We were really surprised," said 18-year-old Jared Coats. "There were nine other bands there, and a lot of them had been around a lot longer than us. We were very blessed."

The members of Providence think their music has the ability to transcend the typical boundaries of Christian rock. Once dismissed by many pop critics as nothing more than well-scrubbed sermonizing using electric guitars, the genre has made huge inroads into the mainstream music scene in recent years. Bands such as Creed, P.O.D. and Switchfoot enjoy wide play on radio and MTV.

Chisholm, who writes many of the original songs the band performs, thinks the distinction of being a Christian act isn't as strict as it used to be.

"Some of our songs don't even mention God," Chisholm said. "A lot of what we sing about deals with coping with life and looking for answers. That kind of stuff applies to everyone, whether they're Christian or not."

The band's beginnings center on the First Assembly of God, where Jared Coats' father, Timothy Coats, is pastor.

The musicians began playing last year at weekly teen praise and worship meetings when Chisholm began noticing how good the band was sounding. He invited Dean, a former member of another band he was in, to come in and jam one night.

"We all just sort of clicked," said Coats, who is a senior at Hernando Christian Academy. "Every time we get together it sounds better than the last time."

The band endeavors to perform as much as possible. In addition to performing at coffeehouses and youth group gatherings, the band has also played at nightclubs such as the Masquerade and the Pegasus in Tampa. Unlike many Christian bands, the members of Providence have no qualms about playing in clubs where alcohol is served.

"We tell (club owners) up front that we're a Christian band," Pratt said. "We don't think what we play is offensive to non-Christians. To most people, music is music."

The band sees many positive opportunities on the horizon. Local recording studio owner John Leavell has taken an interest in the music and has been helping the members complete their first CD, which they hope to release this summer.

In addition, the band has several strong bookings this summer, including a possible opening slot for an upcoming concert by Switchfoot.

The ever-growing legion of admirers brings a sense of personal satisfaction to the band.

"It's always gratifying to have someone come up after a show and tell you that your music has lifted them," Chisholm said. "It makes us very thankful that God has led us into this."
- St Pete Times


Featured on "We Cry Out" volume 1, "Real Fest" volume 1, and Murray Hill Theatre's "Music for the Masses" volume 3

Featured in Magazines: Relevant.

Currently getting airplay on 97x 97.1FM, Spirit FM 90.5, The Joy FM 91.5, and The Switch FM 96.7 in Central Florida.

Providence has released:
"The Early Years" (2004)- first 10 songs
"The Beautiful Drawing Board" (2005) - 6 songs
"The Prelude" (2006) - includes all the songs from the first two albums plus 3 new songs
New Album on the way!


Feeling a bit camera shy


Providence is a Christian Pop/Rock band from Spring Hill, Florida, that formed in January 2004. It all began when Jimmy Chisholm (singer of Providence) and guitarist Dean Pratt met at college in a Music Appreciation class back in 2002. Almost immediately, the two musicians were playing in a local band called Taken Tomorrow. After Taken Tomorrow fizzled out, both guys were working with the teenagers in their churches and leading praise and worship services. Dean and Jimmy kept in touch and it wasn’t long before they were writing music together again. Realizing the call to reach the youth of today coupled with the desire to play music, Providence began! The goal would be to spread the message of Jesus boldly, and they have been doing that since day one. The quiet, yet always reliable lead guitarist, Jared Coats, has been in Providence since the beginning, and after a break with the band Kevin Brown is back at the drums. Chris Frattello joined to make the band what it is today, the end of '06.

Right away things began to fall into place for the band, and they were ready to record their 3-song demo, which turned into a 10 song CD. A year and a half into the groups fast success, they signed with Masada Entertainment, and are still in the early stages of putting together a National CD. Providence has now played over 250 shows and opened for some headlining bands such as: Audio Adrenaline, Pillar, Superchick, Rebecca St. James, Barlow Girl, Jadon Lavik, Sanctus Real, Kids in the Way, Day of Fire, Underoath, Roper, Falling Up, John Rueben, The Wedding, Cheer Up Charlie, Mainstay, Chasing Victory, Paul Wright, Everyday Sunday, StorySide B, Big Daddy Weave, Todd Agnew, Calls From Home, Last Tuesday, The Violent Burning, Copeland, Further Seems Forever, Fireflight, Jason Morant, Sparta, Class of '98, and more.

“We tried to make our music full of hooks so they would be catchy. We wanted fans to be able to sing along the first time they heard us, and I believe we have achieved that. With so many problems in the world, people are looking for answers, and without even knowing it we turn to music. Providence has a goal to reach out to people through our music, and lead them to the love of Jesus Christ.” – Jimmy Chisholm

Providence has been influenced by many great bands and people. Having 5 people in the band brings different styles and backgrounds to the table. Over all they are most influenced by bands such as: Jimmy Eat World, Switchfoot and U2. Other bands include:
Hillsongs and United Live, Passion, David Crowder Band, Chris Tomlin, Good Charlotte, All American Rejects, Juliana Theory, Weezer, DC Talk, Relient K, MxPx, Trust Company, Revis, Evanescence, Emery, Skillet, Further Seems Forever, Creed, Coldplay, Hoobastanck, Blindside, and many, many more!

Laura Abrams
(352) 263-4114