To risk sounding rather cliché, I’d like to start off by saying that My Epic is – well, epic in every way. Whether it’s the music, lyrics, stage presence or the heart of the band itself, “epic” is a rather fitting term all around.
Back before “epic” was the buzz word and before they had ever played a show – lead singer Aaron Stone liked to use the term. “Every time I wanted to describe how our music should sound, I’d use the word epic,” he recalls. “I really wanted our name to be ‘The Common Curse.’ Our original guitarist first suggested that we use epic as our name, but I thought that was a bunch of crap. When it came down to it, we had a week before our first show and no name. So we voted, and my vote lost. We then became My Epic.” Behind the name is a yearning to please the Lord. As musicians and people, each band member wants to live lives seen as part of His epic plan.
“The Lord gives every man his gifts and abilities,” says Aaron. “So how can I brag about them?” His humility and honesty are extremely apparent both on and off the stage. During one of their sets on Oceana’s headlining tour, they played a small, run-down venue in the sketchy part of town. A good 30 kids came out on a weekday night to see them play. Everyone was intrigued and intently observing or participating in the show. Right before their last song, Aaron stopped to share his heart with the crowd. “I’d much rather you know our names, not our band name,” he said. “Come and get to know us as people. I’m legitimately asking you how you are doing, and I’d like for you all to come and answer that question after this next song. Tell us about your band, your school, your grandmom, your girlfriend.”
And with that, he shared each band member’s love for Christ, how that passion influences the songwriting and how they’re more than willing to talk further with anyone interested. Some in the audience smiled and applauded. Others shouted expletives while demanding that he stop talking. The following song of worship was again met with both excitement and disdain. One group of teens walked out, while another cluster closed their eyes and sang along.
“I don’t feel like I have to say something because I have a mic in my mouth,” he later told me. “I have to say something because the Gospel is the only thing that matters.” They strive to show their authenticity and genuineness to everyone they come in contact with. This was evident as they profusely expressed their appreciation to the promoter and sound tech multiple times during their set. “A kid came up to me after and told me I had a lot of heart,” he said. “And hey, that’s a start! Think about Hebrews 12 when God says that He’s the author and perfector of our faith. If we look to Him and think of what He did, we won’t want to give up.”
As is to be expected, their authenticity shines through in every song as well. Aaron talked about their latest record, Yet, and what inspired a few of the tracks. (Find IVM’s review of the album HERE). They recorded the full length with Matt Goldman (As Cities Burn, Copeland, Underoath, Cartel). “He’s the coolest dude ever and so humble,” Aaron describes. “He’s as Godly of a man as he is awesome in the studio, and he’s a good a father as he is the other two.”
“The hardest song to write musically was ‘Rich,’ because the beginning doesn’t even make sense – the time signature is so crazy. Lyrically, it would have been ‘Lashes’,” he continues. “It talks about my struggle with lust over the past 10 years. We were worried that it was going to come across as just trying to be scandalous. I actually had to call my mom and dad first and let them know that we were recording it. My mom just cried when she listened to it.”
As with every track, the lyrics on “Lashes” are brutally honest and transparent – yet redemptive. You can feel his emotion and pain as he slowly reflects, “Have I loved too many daughters to ever be whole? I’m ashamed that You love me. Send grace for the hearts that I stole.”
So much more could be said regarding My Epic, their music and the related ministry. But I’ll leave you with one last thought from Aaron:
“If anyone hears this before the tour is over, just tell them to come hang out. And more importantly than listening to anything we have to say, just pursue a closer relationship with the Lord. Compared to that, bands are just stupid.”