Continued from page 1

“This isn’t a gospel record,” he clarifies, “at least not in the sense that I know gospel. But if you’re going to have a record where good and evil are fighting each other, it’s important to bring your concept of God into it. It’s not technically gospel, but there’s a lot of that on there.”

Mr. Hammond’s twangy vocals are cloaked in reverb throughout the record, which adds a resonance to even the most intimate of songs. “You Will Often Meet Obstruction” nearly resembles a church hymn, with Mr. Hammond’s voice echoing atop a droning harmonium organ. Even so, the songwriter’s Christian ideals come across more clearly in his business ethics.

Project Mercy is a nonprofit organization that seeks to improve the quality of life in the shantytowns east of Tijuana, Mexico. Mr. Hammond donates all profits from his album sales to the organization, which uses the money to build houses for Mexican residents. When all the costs are tallied, exactly 234 sold albums will yield enough capital for one home.

“I don’t need to be a solo rock star,” Mr. Hammond concludes. “I think it’s a little creepy, honestly, if you don’t think beyond yourself. I don’t wanna be creepy, and I want these CDs to make a bit of a dent in things. Even if it’s just a scratch. A scratch can get a lot done.”

Murry Hammond begins his first solo tour this week. He’ll stop by the Iota Club on Monday Don’t Know Where I’m Going but I’m On My Way” will be on sale to benefit Project Mercy, which can be visited on the Web at