Considering the average shelf life of most bands these days, it’s a particularly rare quality when a group not only sticks together for the long haul but maintains a strong sense of mission in the process. For Sanctus Real who began twenty years ago in the basement of the home belonging to guitarist Chris Rohman’s parents, their purpose has never wavered even as musical trends have come and gone.
But on July 1, 2015 – After a 20 year history together, GRAMMY nominations, Dove Awards, seven albums and six No. 1 singles, Matt Hammitt, the lead singer of Sanctus Real, has announced he will be leaving the band this December. Both Matt and his fellow band members have taken time to draft personal statements so that their fans can hear from them first hand and in their own words.
Matt Hammitt (read full statement here)
The band has announced their “Farewell To A Friend” tour this fall, which will be Hammitt’s final tour with the band. Sparrow Records will release a Greatest Hits project from Sanctus Real this October, featuring the band’s top hits over their 20 year career and a new single, which will release in the fall as well.
Sanctus Real’s 11th album, The Dream, blends mature reflection and ever-youthful energy. Songs like “Easier on My Heart,” “I Need You,” “Same God,” and the title tune display a fresh electronic influence that bolsters the band’s melodic strength and rhythmic drive. Lead singer Matt Hammitt especially shines on “33,” a loving tribute to the ties of faith and family. All told, The Dream is a grown-up restatement of the Christian mission that has guided Sanctus Real’s music from the start.
“Making music for the sake of making music never made sense to us,” claims Chris Rohman, “Our mission was so clear at the beginning it was almost unspoken. It has been so natural for us to create music that reflects a life lived through faith in God.” Instead, no matter the season, whether it’s one characterized by struggle, victory or something in between, Sanctus Real remained sure and steady and written songs that honestly reflect the complex journey of faith.
The band, comprised of Matt Hammitt (vocals), Chris Rohman (guitars), Mark Graalman (drums), Jake Rye (bass), and Seth Huff (guitars and keys)