The Foyer is a two-person band with members Jim Williford and Justin Berilla. Jim and Justin met in 2019 at an open mic in Greensboro NC, where Jim was running sound. They found that they were into the same variety of musical styles, as well as music being a vehicle for positive change.
At that time, The Foyer was in hiatus, having run from 2004 to 2013. Jim had been focusing on solo projects, side-man roles, and running sound. When Justin learned about The Foyer, he liked a number of features, including material recorded and accomplishments. He could see that Jim was serious about songwriting and was entering contests for feedback. Many folks were liking Jim's tunes. Positive overseas reaction included placing as a finalist in the United Kingdom Songwriting Contest. Also, The Foyer had participated in showcases at music conferences, such as the Mid-Atlantic Music Conference/Charlotte NC and headlining at the Music Business Conference/Mohegan Sun Casino and Resort-Connecticut.
Over the weeks at the open mic, Jim was blown away by Justin's energy when performing and his use of guitar hooks and equipment. Like Jim, Justin had played in church praise bands with a calling to secular performance. In addition to Justin's stage presence and guitar, Jim was moved by his use of spoken word and lyrics expressing deep positive spiritual themes.
Reforming The Foyer during the Covid pandemic has been a challenge, but Jim and Justin have not stayed still. As in most communities, live gigging has taken a major hit. However, they have jumped on rare opportunities to play for Covid-safe community events, such as the October 2020 Archdale NC Parks and Recreation Halloween event and a July 2020 performance for The Children's Miracle Network Hospitals. They are developing new material in the studio and adapting new equipment for live production and performance. As live-play opportunities re-open, they are pursuing touring starting this summer. They would like to participate in projects that use live music to facilitate community and peace.