Iowa Band Sondogs Shine in Chariton – Reborn’s Andy Rich Joins for the Encore

Posted: July 10, 2011 by pastorerichann in Music and Art
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From left to right - Robert Thatcher, Nathaniel Thatcher, Ian Richardson, John Thatcher

Including paying homage to our freedoms as a nation, on Sunday morning July 3 at Cornerstone Community Church in Chariton – local Iowa band Sondogs honored the one who gives us our ultimate freedoms. The concert started with some opening upbeat praise songs featuring the combined talents of the Cornerstone Praise singers and the back-up of Sondogs’ instrumentalists (concerning which Nathaniel Thatcher more than proved he’s capable of filling the “Dogs” drummer position).

Sondogs Nathaniel Thatcher cooks with Cornerstone Praise band

As the Sondogs set started, singer Robert Thatcher voiced homage to the One from whom all of our ultimate freedoms come. This offering of spoken praise came between stirring renditions of the songs “It is You” and “Grace Like Rain.” At that point, the “Dogs” showed their versatility by performing edgy versions of classic hymns “When I survey” and “Jesus Paid it All.” The capstone of this section of the concert was a progressively swelling offering of David Crowder’s “Oh How He Loves,” with the climax of the song resulting in attendees rising to their feet in worship.

Singer Robert Thatcher prompts worship


Charlie Hale (guitar) and Steve Thatcher (bass)


At this juncture in the set, the band had a humorous moment by describing it as the “love” themed segment of the concert – but putting jokes aside, their original songs “True Love” and “Love Me” next to “No Greater Love” were among the most poignant musical expressions of the entire day. Along with the spiritual intimacy reflected in the lyrics, I couldn’t help but think that the combination of Robert and John Thatcher singing together was something akin to Christianized versions of Michael Stipe (Robert) and Joe Cocker (John). Also, the vocals were being countered by Charlie Hale’s guitar interludes, where the riffs reverberating off his stratocaster copy bore shades of Mark Knopfler’s playing from the Gospel rock album “Slow Train Coming.

John Thatcher sings soulfully


Charlie Hale "strato-gizes"

From there the band broke into one of their staple favorites for fans of south-central Iowa – which is their own unique, riveting cover version of the late Larry Norman song “Outlaw.” For the initiated, this is often one of the highlights of their concerts, and on this occasion there were some “converts” among the “uninitiated.” Following John’s touching speaking devotional and meditative solo worship number “Amazing Love,” the band kicked it back up again with their highly energetic rendition of Crowder’s “Undignified.” With not a person sitting and virtually nobody standing still… there ought to be rules against having this much fun.  Their “official” set concluded with a jarring interpretation of 3rd Day’s “gone,” which appropriately emphasized moving onward in step with a Divine calling.

In reaction to the encouragement from an enthusiastic crowd to play yet another song – singer Robert Thatcher invited Reborn’s Andy Rich to join them on stage, and the Sondogs backed Rich in performing the Reborn original “Who I Am” (to an elated crowd response). Much to the delight of many, this would not be the last time they would team up on this summer day.

Reborn singer Andy Rich joins Sondogs during encore

A special thanks to…
Robert Thatcher – Vocals
John Thatcher – Guitar/Vocals
Charlie Hale – Guitar
Steve Thatcher – Bass
Ian Richardson -Keyboard
Nathaniel Thatcher -Drums

…along with Andy Rich of Reborn and the Cornerstone Praise band for a great morning of music and worship.

I also noticed someone(?) placed a review of the July 3 Reborn/Sondogs concert in the Chariton town square at a link right here.

For more information about future Sondogs concerts – go here.


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