Chattacon 36 will take place Jan. 21-23 in Chattanooga, Tenn. and in addition to a wide variety of sci-fi and fantasy authors and artists, Tymbral, a Christian band made up of area residents, will also be in attendance. The connection was made because Ernie Saylor, lead guitarist for Tymbral, is also an antiquarian book collector doing a class on the history of science fiction at the convention.
“I asked them if they needed a band and told the organizers we might be willing to play,” Saylor said. Tymbral submitted a CD of their music and the organizers liked what they heard.
The show in Tennessee will be one of Tymbral’s biggest and serves as good validation for a band that just finshed their first full year together. There are eight members in the band and they are from five different churches and a variety of different denominations. The band features vocalists Angie Ninan, Ginger Buehl, Maggie Wilkins and Sherry Evans, keyboardist Dwayne Cobb, drummer Matthew Rivera, rhythm guitarist Charles Wilkins and Saylor.
The band’s name comes from the Bible, although they adopted a new spelling. A timbrel is a musical instrument and appears in Exodus 15:20-21.
“20 And Miriam the prophetess, the sister of Aaron, took a timbrel in her hand; and all the women went out after her with timbrels and with dances. 21 And Miriam sang unto them: Sing ye to the LORD, for He is highly exalted:”
Some of the members of Tymbral knew each other but others answered an ad on Craigslist that sought people to get together to honor the Creator and play good music. They have made several television appearances, showing up on Channel 57 and the Gravedigger Show last April, but the show at Chattacon will be one of their first where they aren’t “preaching to the choir” and will give the band a chance to spread their message to people who may not have been exposed to it before.
“Given a choice between playing at church on Sunday or a sci-fi convention, I’d always choose the sci-fi convention,” said Wilkins. “It’s a perfect place to go play and spread our message.”
It’s a message that makes it way to people through musical styles as varied as blues, progressive rock and pop. Each member of the band writes songs and it appears to be a very open process where different people get featured on certain songs. The band rehearses several times a week and performs as often as they can, whether at festivals like Tyrone’s Founders Day or at Upscale Pizza. All of their rehearsing and performing has helped them sound tight and find fans including keyboardist Tom Brislin who has toured with YES, Deborah Harry and Meatloaf and plays on the track, “When the Warrior Returns,” on Tymbral’s CD due out later this month.
The band plays a mixture of original songs and covers, including songs like “People Get Ready,” and “Where The Streets Have No Name.” They aren’t afraid to jam or let loose and they change the pace while performing very easily. Tymbral is praying to get a good turn out at their performance on Jan. 23 from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. at the Chattanooga Choo Choo Centennial Theatre and are looking forward to shows in Florida during Easter weekend and an Evangelism project in Bryson City, N.C. June 30-July 3. For more information, visit www.tymbral.com