Sidewalk Prophets
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Sidewalk Prophets

Band Pop Christian


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2003. Self-Titled



The Sidewalk Prophets are an unlikely group of poets, musicians, and fun-lovers who have been brought together by the blood of Jesus Christ to share the hope, faith, tragedy, and love that is the reality of Christianity.

In the fall of 2001 Ben McDonald followed a calling into ministry that led him to a small private university in central Indiana . God had planted a passion, and desire for Ben to use the gift of song-writing through the medium of music to reach out to both Christians and Non-Christians and share the realities of life. He traveled out of faith, not knowing who would be in his band and with no other ambitions but to help others seek God using the ministry of music. Shortly after attending the university, Ben received word of a talented singer that lived two doors down the hall. With a lot of hope and just as much skepticism, McDonald headed down the hallway to meet the rumored vocalist. This was just the beginning of a long and great friendship, Ben McDonald and Dave Frey who would soon form the backbone of the group the Sidewalk Prophets.

Frey brought a whole new dimension to the songs McDonald had written and also brought his own collections of original songs. The two writers styles meshed and they began to write and record songs in their dorm rooms. Jokingly, they named themselves 4 Floors II Heaven because they were located on the forth floor of their residence hall. The songs that they were recording became quite popular on the local computer network at the university. In fact, their first song, October Skies, was so well received that when preformed for the first time that it won a highly esteemed prize, a pizza party for the entire fourth floor. Sidewalk Prophets' songs started being shared and downloaded, first on their own dorm floor, and then, like a slow spreading fire, all throughout the campus.

The timing for these events would seem all-too-perfect, as the university was in the beginning stages of forming its very own record label. The band won a developmental deal working with the new label, and both parties were able to learn a lot from each other. The record label decided the band would need a name change, noticing that 4 Floors II Heaven sounded and looked very odd. After 2-3 nights of late night brainstorming Frey, and McDonald decided on the name Sidewalk Prophets. The name actually derives its meanings from a few places. Sidewalk is meant to indicate the ordinary appeal that the band has to common people. The band had no desire to fit the cookie-cutter world of the music business. A sidewalk is an ordinary part of everyday life. Unthreatening and often unnoticed, it takes us down some of life's most amazing paths. The reason for deciding upon prophet came simply from dictionary. A prophet is someone who speaks truth about life. Frey and McDonald decided that their music would reflect the reality of life, the reality that the world is a great but often complicated, and tragic placeand that being a devoted Christian means that your life will change in a beautiful and radical way, but that life is often more difficult after you choose to live like Christ. Another reality the band attempts to convey is that the world has lot to offer, but nothing it can offer can be as fulfilling as a life modeled after Christ.

Dave explains, So often in life, Christians, young and old, believe that since they are Christians life will be fair and terrible things will fail to occur. This is definitely not the case, as one soon finds out. God never promised us a perfect world here on earth. In fact, He promised that some of us would be chastised, even martyred simply for being attached to the name of Christ. Despite the sometimes gloomy prospect of life, God gives us blessings so abundant that we will never fathom their worth. He didn't promise us a perfect world, He promised us a perfect home and a perfect eternity in Heaven.

Dave and Ben have been sharing their hearts with audiences for over four years. They travel with a full band but also have traveled many places as a tandem. In 2005, the band set out with former INPOP recording artists Sky Harbor and Independent recording artists Our Hearts Hero on a 25 city national tour. It was during this period of being on the road for two months straight without returning home that God would truly refine the vision of the band. Over that period, the Sidewalk Prophets learned that they needed to focus more on music ministry, not music business.

After this experience, the band teamed up with World Vision to help promote the end of AIDS in Africa . They began to take on the task of helping World Vision obtain sponsorships for children who were directly affected by the AIDS epidemic. The band still works diligently on the behalf of World Vision, and stands whole-heartedly behind the organization and its work.

The Sidewalk Prophets specialize in work with youth. They have a heart for young people and have played at many differen