Born in the basement of a downtown church, the Columbia, SC based duo of Exit 9 has grown into a full rockin’ music ministry. For Clay and Gloria, it began as an opportunity to play music together—to share a common passion in music. But, it’s so much more than that…it’s about ministry, it’s about building relationships with our friends—both new and old—and it’s about sharing our faith and encouraging others to do the same.
When you hear Exit 9, you’ll hear music—guitar driven, upbeat music, with straightforward lyrics and tight blended harmonies. But, if you listen closely, you’ll hear stories of faith, you’ll hear relationships being formed with audience members, you’ll hear questions and challenges and through it all you’ll hear of God’s love. It’s in this way that Exit 9 moves the listener through a journey—a journey together to focus on our relationship with God.
It hasn’t always been that way for Exit 9. From their beginnings in the basement of that church, Clay and Gloria played their favorite songs of the artists who inspired them. Eventually, they tried their hand at writing a few of their own songs—and that’s where the real ministry began. That event unfolded an opportunity for them to share their faith with others through music…to lead others on that journey calling on their own beliefs and faith experiences. It became clear that Exit 9’s mission would be to tell others through music about God’s presence in our lives. Clay said, “Writing our own music was a great way to share our faith journeys with others, and get them talking about their relationship with God.”
So began a journey that has taken them to many places to meet many different people—from the rural areas of the Southeast to the suburbs of the Midwest, from the camps of South Dakota to the church right down the road, Exit 9 has emerged as a duo that has not only entertained audiences, but forged relationships with them. And it’s those relationships that continue to form the foundation of Exit 9’s ministry.
Exit 9 continues to share their ministry with groups both large and small. With
Clay on guitar and vocals and Gloria handling vocals and percussion, their music and stage presence delights and engages audiences with stories, questions, participation, reflection and humor. Their audiences become part of the show—part of the event and take ownership in the mission to share our faith journeys. Gloria noted, “Having the audience participate in the event is so important—it’s what makes our concerts more than just a show!” From the moment they arrive, it takes only minutes for Exit 9 to begin building bonds with the folks who come to their shows…bonds that will last a lifetime.