Abandon looks to reach troubled teens Print
Written by Cameron Conant   
Thursday, 11 December 2008 04:23 PM America/New_York

San Antonio progressive rockers' debut album offers 'grace' message

Josh Engler grew up in an RV with missionary parents, traveling the country, building and repairing churches. These days, the 25-year-old San Antonio resident occasionally works for a homebuilder and still travels as a missionary of sorts. Engler fronts Abandon, a five-piece progressive rock band that makes its major label debut Jan. 27 with Searchlights.

Abandon’s members—with the exception of Josh’s brother, Justin—met while leading worship at a church in San Antonio, but their career outside the church got a boost when a ministry stumbled across the band’s MySpace page.

The ministry that contacted the band was The Seven Project, a moral education program for public schools that’s affiliated with the Assemblies of God. The Seven Project puts on public school assemblies that address six big issues teens face, including drugs and sex. The seventh—students’ need for Jesus—is addressed at an off-site, non-school-sponsored assembly that features music by Abandon.


Engler said his band’s affiliation with the ministry has helped shape his music and message, and has given Abandon a heart for marginalized teens.

“That’s definitely our heart, and we’re trying to use this record for that purpose,” Engler said. “For the most part, it’s just to reach those people (who are struggling). And everybody’s at that point at one time in life where they feel as if the sun’s not going to rise tomorrow.”

But music is just a vehicle for the message, and Engler wants to share how “God knows who we are and loves us anyway.”

“It’s grace, that’s the true message,” Engler said. “It’s a message I want to convey more overtly on coming records as I learn more about it.”

To order Searchlights, visit EMI CMG at www.emicmgdistribution.com, or call 800-877-4443.