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Fireflight

While on a stop of their stint on Disciple's Scars Remain Tour, we got a chance to sit down with Fireflight to talk about their debut record The Healing Of Harms. As Family Force 5 did their soundcheck, we piled into a middle school music classroom (that served as FF5's dressing room) for the interview, but the FF5 guys returned while we talked. Read on to hear the Fireflight bunch talk about their tour experiences, their album, and what lies ahead...
This interview took place on: 2/19/07.
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  • Jesus freak Hideout (John DiBiase): You guys wanna just go around and say your names for the recording?
    Glenn Drennen: My name is Glenn... and stuff like that. Is there anything else you'd like to know? (John: Umm... what's your favorite color?) I wear black a lot. But I would say... blue. Anything else? (John: No that's good.) You don't care anything about me other than what color I like? (John: Well then! If there's something you'd like to...) I mean, I'm gonna give this thing up to Dawn and you're going to talk to her for about forty five minutes, so just give me something while you got me here. *laughs* (John: OK, favorite movie?) I like Shawshank Redemption. I like Tommy Boy. I like Joe Dirt. The Green Mile. I like Star Wars. The newer ones aren't very good, but I like the first ones. Indiana Jones, y'know, classics. (John: So, prison movies and classics.) Sure. I never thought about that. I do like prison movies! *laughter* That's kinda creepy! Space and prison movies! *laughter* So you're done with me aren't you? (John: Unless there was something else you would like to say?) *reluctantly passes recorder off to Dawn*
    Dawn Richardson: I'm Dawn and my favorite color's blue as well. *To Glenn:* Sorry I took that from you, too! *laughs*
    Wendy Drennen: My name's Wendy. My favorite color's green.
    Phee Shorb: I'm Phee and I don't think I really have a favorite color. (John: That's fine.) (Wendy: No it's sad, that's what it is.) *laughter* (Justin: He has trouble making decisions.) That actually is exactly what it is, I can't make a decision on what is my favorite color.
    Justin Cox: I think his favorite color's clear. (Phee: It's clear? Well, which one is it?) *laughter* I'm Justin and my favorite color is green also.

  • JFH (John): How did you guys meet and get started?
    Justin: Well we met a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away on the planet of Tatooine in a small, small village where we did moisture farming. (*Phee starts humming the Star Wars theme*) (Glenn: We've been watching Star Wars lately... Soli watched it with us! *points to Solomon of Family Force 5 sitting in the room*) Glenn and I went to school together. He and Wendy are married - to each other. So Glenn basically had the vision and desire to start a band and Wendy was practicing on the bass, so he had her start as the bassist. Then I walked into the store he was working at one day and he asked me if I wanted to be in a band and I said "OK!" cause I had just gotten back from Washington State and really had nothing to do. Dawn, they actually heard sing at a service for graduation for Glenn's younger brother and her voice just blew them away so they asked her if she wanted to sing and she agreed - with the stipulation that they were only allowed to do "Christian music." Phee we actually met through a mutual friend in another band. We were looking for a drummer that could really stick with what we were looking to do and Phee was it and he's been with us ever since.

  • JFH (John): How'd you get the name?
    Justin: The name "Fireflight" - We tried really hard to think of a good name and we couldn't, and so ten minutes before our first show, Dawn said "I thought 'Fireflight' sounded cool," so we went with that. (John: Is that true?) It's absolutely true! It has no meaning whatsoever. The place we were at was like "How do you want me to introduce you?" and we're like "I dunno... give us a second."
    Glenn: We had worked so hard to come up with three of the coolest songs we'd ever written, we played our first show ever, and we didn't even have a name.

  • JFH (John): How long ago was that?
    Justin: Seven years.

  • JFH (John): What are your influences?
    Justin: Glenn and I listened to a lot of 80's hair bands, Dawn listened to a lot of country when she was growing up.
    Wendy: I listened to only Sandi Patty, Twila Paris, and Larnelle Harris.
    Justin: She was a big Adult Contemporary buff. *laughs*
    Wendy: My parents forbade me to listen to anything except church music. My first concert was Carman, alright! I admit it! (Justin: She had a Twila Paris all-over print t-shirt!) You guys were probably there! *laughter*
    Justin: ...and then Phee listened to a lot of Dream Theater and progressive stuff.

  • JFH (John): Your album The Healing Of Harms tackles some real sensitive issues and even problems with the church. Do you think Christians can sometimes be our own worst enemy in trying to reach the lost? Album cover
    Dawn: Man, that's a pretty loaded question. *laughs* I would say that I do think there's a lot of ways that we as Christians and the church have acted over the years that has driven a lot of people away from God. We see that with a lot of people where they just don't want anything to do with God or Christianity - and you can always trace it back to a person who's supposed to be a Christian. I think what everybody really needs to do is maybe just read the Bible again and see what it is that Jesus did and how He acted and actually try to be like Jesus, because I think that's what Christianity is, y'know? It's trying to become like Jesus. And I think we get totally off-track - we spend a lot of time trying to write rule books like the Pharisees did, and trying to become something we aren't. And we circle the wagons and we sit around and pat each other on the back and we don't notice the people who are hurting and we don't help the people who really need it. I think that's really sad, but I think if we would all just pray a lot more and just really ask God to open our eyes and to help us to love other people like He loves them, then it could be like a revolution.

  • JFH (John): Was "You Decide" inspired by someone in particular or a specific experience?
    Dawn: Basically what we just talked about a second ago - because I know that a lot of people make their decision about God and Christ based on other people. And I've often thought that's kind of ironic 'cause if they get to Heaven and They're like, "Who are you?" and you're like, "Sorry, but 'so and so' did 'this' to me" and They're going to be like, "Well what does 'so and so' have to do with it? This is about Me and you." And so we really want people to actually seek out God Himself and then when they see His beauty and His love, then they'll definitely make the right decision as opposed to the one that is just modeled after another human being, 'cause we're all so flawed.

  • JFH (John): What music have you guys been listening to lately?
    Glenn: A whole lot of Family Force 5, Disciple, and Decyfer Down! *laughs* Everyday!

  • JFH (John): It wouldn't happen to have anything to do with that fact that you guys are on tour with them?
    Dawn: No, it's all that's on the iPod. We went through and took everything else off. So we just cycle through their albums.
    Justin: We're ultimate band fans. We are.
    Phee: Who's the ultimate band? (Wendy: Stryper?) Stryper? *laughter*
    Justin: We listen to a lot. Basically, the iPod's in the van on shuffle. So it's not really any one band in particular. So... that's a really generic answer for ya. *laughs*

  • JFH (John): What has God been teaching each of you lately?
    Wendy: That I love Florida more than I thought...
    Justin: Patience! Because driving on these roads takes a lot of it cause we're from Florida and we're not used to driving on any snow! (John: Yeah... Welcome to Pennsylvania...) *laughs*
    Phee: I'd say for me... *heavy sigh* Serious answer time! Boring! *laughter* For me, I'd say trust is a big one. We don't make very much money and sometimes we have to completely trust God to get our bills paid, and that's one thing. Just different scenarios within the band, y'know? We were broken down on the side of the road and it was, what? 10 degrees? *laughs* So in those circumstances, I'm just trying to learn to trust that God's sees me in that situation and that's all there is to it. He sees me, and He's not going to leave me. Situations like that have caused me to grow in the area of trust, and I'd also say accountability. I'm just learning more and more that if there's an area in my life that's not going the way I want it to, God's plan for me to overcome that is through the counsel of people that are wiser than me and people that He's put over me in a spiritual covering. And just finding more and more that every time I go to those people, they have the answers I'm looking for.
    Wendy: Well, we've been on the road for about a month now and I'm starting to miss home and I'm starting to get tired of all the people around me, to be real honest. And so God's been working on my heart the past few days, specifically on getting along with people, and I'm not the easiest person to get along with, you can ask any of these people. *laughter* I'm pretty particular and I'm pretty opinionated. I read a verse this morning, actually, in James and it's in The Message version, so it was really easy to understand. It jumped out at me and talked about Godly wisdom being getting along with others. And I never thought of wisdom being getting along with anybody. And it kind of just hit me in the heart really hard. Then I read a chapter in Proverbs and it said "in being wise, your life will be made easy," and I thought, "OK, so the more I get along with people, the happier I will be and the easier my life will go, which is so true. So yeah, this past week, I've been learning how to get along with others when I don't want to and when it's not fun and when I don't feel like it. So it's hard, it's a challenge, and it's not been an easy week *laughs* but I think that I'm hopefully going to grow out of that.
    Dawn: I also feel like God's trying to teach me patience. I think there seems to come circumstances in our lives where we just can't see how it's going to work out and in a lot of those times we feel discouraged and we just want to give up. But I think God's showing me that all I need to do is just kinda sit tight and have faith, and He's going to work it all out before my eyes. And all the wallowing, and all the whining and everything that I could do - that's just going to waste my own time. But you don't usually realize that until you've done all of the wallowing and the whining! *laughs* So basically, God's just trying to teach me to just be still, let Him do His thing, and stop trying to force things, and everything will come out the way it's supposed to.
    Glenn: Pretty much for me is that none of us are in control. I mean, I like to be in control a lot with my own life and make my own calls and stuff. Especially on this tour. All the bands have had a lot of adversities with vehicles breaking down and wrecks and - I spent some time in the hospital. And it just seems like it's one thing after another and Satan's just been trying to attack because I really believe we're doing something awesome. But at the same time, you have to be able to sit back and say "OK, God, You've got to be able to do this because I can't do it." For me, it's kind of what everybody said - all just kind of encompassed into one thing with patience, believing that God's going to get you through with your finances, and being able to deal with people. It's just giving all of it up to God and saying "I can't do this on my own strength, but I know that You can do it."

  • JFH (John): What's next for you guys? Working on any new music?
    Wendy: Well, we're currently writing for our next album. No definite release date yet, but we're working on that and hoping to be in the studio sometime before the end of this year. And after this tour with Disciple, we're going to be taking a little break and then heading out with Seventh Day Slumber. Following that tour, we're going to be doing a European tour and hitting a lot of cool places we've never been to before, and also going back to Germany. We were there in December and it was awesome. So we're really excited about the European thing. And then after that, it's pretty much just festivals and spot dates all Summer. So that's all we have in the plans right now.

  • JFH (John): What's the new stuff sounding like?
    Wendy: Not much yet! We're just coming up with some riffs here and there. We haven't really put it all together yet. So, it's still a big mess! *some laughs*

  • JFH (John): Any last comments?
    Dawn: We just want to say thanks to anyone who's given us a chance and bought the record and anybody who hasn't bought it yet, we hope that you will! And we just want to say thanks so much to all of our fans for their support - to everybody who's come out for the Scars Remain Tour because we've been fighting to get to each show, so when we get there and see everybody's smiling faces, it really makes it worth it. So we really wanna thank you guys and remind everyone that God loves them, has a plan for them, and just to look to Him.



  • Fireflight

     

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