Once we realized that we were covering three of the four acts on the Heaven tour (Mosaic MSC, Mack Brock, and Cody Carnes) we made it a mission to get Local Sound into the mix – and we’re glad we did!

Shortly after reaching out to the band via their web site, we got an email from our friends at Integrity Music announcing their signing of Local Sound and the release of the “Nobody” single. Along the way I discovered the song “Wild” from Local Sound’s WWJD self-release EP, and have been listening to that pretty much nonstop ever since. Simply put, I love these guys!

Local Sound’s catchy, synth-driven songs have as great a message as they do a groove. Speaking of which, I strongly encourage you to invite the drummers on your team to check out Local Sound rhythm-ist Garret P. Tyler’s feature in our new Worship Drum and Bass section. Garrett is one of the most studied, versatile drummers we’ve come across in a long time and we are thrilled to also be able to include him in our pages.

For this feature, we caught up with Local Sound’s Jared Runion on the eve of the Heaven tour. So without further introduction, let’s go Local!

[WM] Jared, great to meet you and thanks for joining us!

[Jared Runion] Hey! Thanks for having me!

[WM] So, Local Sound is the musical heartbeat of the Nashville-based college and young adult ministry My Local, hence the name. Like Los Angeles, lots of people end up in Nashville as a ‘destination city’, which is to say lots of people come there looking for something. There’s obviously a great ministry opportunity to meet a need, known or otherwise, so how exactly did My Local get started?

[Jared] My Local started in hopes to see college students and young adults grounded in Jesus-centered communities. I came across this stat that messed with my brain – 81% of people that grow up in Church leave Church when they go away to college. So, the dream is to create a space for college students and young adults to find Godly relationships and Godly purpose.

[WM] I first heard about My Local when I saw your name as part of the lineup for the upcoming Heaven tour you’re heading out on with Mosaic MSC, Mack Brock, and Cody Carnes. You also did the 2017 Outcry tour, so the road is nothing new to you. Although your WWJD EP has over 7 million streams and the YouTube video for “More Than Air” has 250,000+ views, there are a lot of people who have yet to hear you guys. This tour is a really exciting opportunity to get out and share the message of what God is doing in and through your ministry. This has all happened pretty quickly, so what is it like to see something that was birthed locally take flight nationally?

[Jared] We are just so thankful. We started writing these songs for My Local, so to see them bring life into Churches outside of our place is just the cherry on top of a dream come true.

[WM] On the international front, you just announced your signing to Integrity Music – congratulations! “Nobody” is the first single you’ll be releasing and it is set to drop tomorrow, which no surprise marks the first date for the tour. That’s pretty crafty, can you tell us about that song as well as when we might expect a full album?

[Jared] At My Local we place a huge emphasis on community. We like to say, “You have to follow Jesus for yourself, but you don’t have to follow him by yourself.” As much as we love community, we always want to keep the main thing the main thing. So, the idea with “Nobody” is to draw attention to what we consider the main thing… the love of Jesus. You can have the best friends in the world but nobody will love you like Jesus. No update on an album… yet!

[WM] I loved the Hotel Sessions, so cool! How did that come together?

[Jared] The Noelle was a new hotel that opened in Nashville when we started talking about stripped back versions. The goal was to give a feel for worship leaders in Churches that don’t have full bands and tracks.

[WM] In addition to being one of the key worship leaders and songwriters for Local Sound, you also founded My Local. In fact, you’re featured on the MyLocal615 web site as one of the connect group leaders. While God is obviously breathing on My Local, your heart is in the ‘local’ Church. Can you tell us why the local Church matters so much?

[Jared] The local Church is really important to me because it is the most effective disciple-making machine on earth today. The mission of My Local is to make disciples, specifically in the college and young adult space. So in that way we hope to come alongside the local Church.

[WM] I’m loving “Wild”! It kind of reminds me of LANY, but with a ‘higher’ purpose. What are your thoughts about how God is using music to reach people that might not normally think about Church or a life following Christ?

[Jared] This is something I’m super passionate about. Music is a universal language giving us an opportunity to make the gospel accessible to people who would otherwise not find themselves in Church settings. With things like Spotify, the line between pop music and worship is really blurred. So a big dream for us is to bring Jesus to people who would not otherwise find themselves in a Church.

[WM] Your Instagram account currently has 12 posts and 11,000 followers, that’s a pretty awesome level of engagement! Again, noting that the Heaven tour kicks off tomorrow, is there anything else you’d like to add?

[Jared] We’re just so thankful and looking forward to seeing everyone and making new friends along the way.

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