When Liberal Democrat Mark Smith decided to run for Lieutenant Governor of Pennsylvania recently, the amateur guitarist might not have counted on the votes of his conservative Christian bandmates. But what his musical friends had in store for him astonished Smith. The other members of the up-and-coming group, One Floor Away, told him he’d have to quit making music with them — unless he changed his position on marriage equality.
Smith has spoken up for marriage equality on the campaign trail and on Facebook. He refused to renounce his support, and lost the opportunity to play music he loves for a band that is recording its first album and seems to be going places in the Christian rock scene.
“It sort of blew my mind,” Smith said. “It was like a smack to the side of the head.” He said the band’s record producer and a couple of his band mates gave him the ultimatum late last month as they were meeting in Ithaca, N.Y. for a recording session.
The other band members declined to comment on the affair, other than to say “What we do with our band, we prefer to keep quiet.” The group aims to spread the gospel of Jesus Christ, and Smith says he was on board with that.
One Floor Away recently recorded a single featuring Smith that was released on iTunes; at Smith’s request, it is being re-dubbed with a substitute part. He explains he “can’t support them any more than they support me.”
He also built the group’s website, Smith says. It’s unclear whether One Floor Away will redesign it so as not to benefit from creative contributions by the insufficiently pious.
[image via philly.com]