Tree63 is a Christian rock band that includes members John Ellis – vocals, guitar, and piano, Theunis “Tain” Odendall –drums, and Daniel Ornellas on bass. The band was created in 1996, but it was not until 1997 when they came up with a name. Before they were allowed to perform at North Beach, Durban they had to have a name. As the story goes, John came up with the name Tree because he standing under one at the time, however, the 63 was added in 2000, which was in reference to Psalm 63.

Their first album won them a GMA Dove Award for “Rock Album of the Year” in 2001. They recorded Matt Redman’s “Blessed Be Your Name” and this sparked its popularity. It was also featured on Wow Hits the 2005 edition. It was called the number 3 Praise and Worship song of all times.

They have released the following albums: Overflow 1997,63 in 1999, Tree63 in 2000, the Life and Times of Absolute truth in 2002,The Answer to the Question in 2004, Worship Volume One-Stand For You in 2005, and Blessed be your name: The Best From Tree63.

They have also compiled Wow Worship-2006, iWorship platinum-2006, Ultimate Music Makeover: The Songs of Michael W. Smith-2005, Festival Con Dios, Volume 2-2002, and Soul Lift-2001, Open the Eyes of My Heart-2001. You can see the last one being advertised all over television in the last several months.

John Ellis explained in an interview that he believes the group has a “distinct and definite calling from God”, however, this does not mean they have not had problems such as the last record not selling as expecting, the original drummer Darryl Swart leaving the band in July 2003 after seven years, and of course, all the responsibilities to their growing families.

Tree63 has another album due out in November 2007, which is a mix of classic and contemporary worship. The album called Worship Volume 1- I Stand For You will feature many new and original worship tunes.

Tree63 was back in England and recently appeared on the BBC TV program “Songs of Praise”, with John on guitar and worship leader Matt Redman at the Abbey Road Studios in London.

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