One of the wonderful things about Heber Springs is the unique diversity of individuals that fill
this small lake and river town. Last week, I sat down with Heber Springs United Methodist
Church’s worship and creative arts leader, Jamie Randolph, to discuss his journey from being a
Memphis local musician, to working in the Nashville recording industry, to leading worship in
Heber Springs.
Jamie Randolph was born in Memphis, Tennessee in March of 1982 to Wayne and Janet
Randolph. It is here where his musical roots began to grow. His father was the minister of
music for a church in the Memphis area before he decided to retire after thirty-three years of
service.
“I’d wake up on Saturday mornings to hear my parents, gathered around the piano, singing and
playing hymns” said Jamie Randolph.
“So, music was part of everything” Randolph continued.
After receiving his first guitar at a fairly young age, he began taking guitar lessons at the Howard
Vance Guitar Academy in East Memphis. In the sixth grade, Jamie, began playing praise
songs for the youth band at the church his family attended.
As he continued talking about how much his family had an influence on him musically, he began
reminiscing about riding in the car with his dad, listening to grunge and other hard rock on one
of Memphis’s great rock stations.
“I remember the electric charge of listening to Sound Garden, Pearl Jam, and Stone Temple
Pilots” said Randolph.
“It was so magical and I fell in love with everything about rock n roll music” he explained.
This led Jamie to dive deep into the influences that had an impact on rock of the bands 90’s. In
his research, he began listening to music of the 60’s and 70s.
By the time he reached entered high school, he continued playing music and pursuing
performing live. He branched out from playing in the youth band to playing in local bands and
performing throughout the Memphis area.
“At the time, I didn’t have a passion to lead worship in high school. I had a passion for rock n
roll” he said.
After he graduated from White Station High School in 2000, he attended the university of
Memphis studying jazz guitar.
“For me, it was all about the music and mastering your instrument. I’ve always wanted to take
guitar to that level” said Randolph.
In the fall of 2001, while attending the University of Memphis, he was approached by a local
pop/rock Memphis band, Retrospect, to play lead guitar.
Not much time had past when Jamie and his band, Retrospect, got signed to Memphis’s
legendary recording studio Ardent Studio’s sub label, Ardent Music.
Retrospect recorded an EP at Ardent Studio which gained the attention from mainstream labels.
They traveled to New York to perform in two showcases for studio executives from major labels
Columbia and Sony.
After returning home from an unsuccessful trip to New York, Jamie continued to work with
Retrospect. They recorded a full length album with legendary 90’s and 2000’s music producers,
Ross Rice and John Hampton. After several attempts and not having any success, Retrospect
decided to part ways leaving Jamie to move forward to the next phase of his life.