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Background information
Origin Newcastle upon Tyne, England
Genres Christian rock
Years active 1994–2010
Labels Survivor Records
Website www.yfriday.com
Members Ken Riley
Gav Richards
Danny Smith
Dez Minto

YFriday were a British Christian rock and worship band from Newcastle upon Tyne. From their beginning in 1994 until they split in 2010, they gained popularity amongst Christian music fans around the world, particularly in the United Kingdom. In 2010, YFriday announced that they were commencing their final months before disbanding later in the same year, after releasing a number of successful albums.


The group was formed in 1994,[1] originally as the house band for a monthly evangelistic outreach event run by Youth for Christ called WhyFriday?.[2] The WhyFriday? outreach programme initially had a regular attendance of about 50–60 young people, but this steadily grew and the programme, now called IXth Hour, is currently held in the Newcastle City Hall,[2] and has around 800 attendees each month. The band still played there regularly until 2010.

Following the 1999 release of the Rainmaker album, the band were approached by Kingsway with an offer of a 3-year recording contract.[2] Bassist Danny Smith joined the band in 2001,[3] in time for the Open album. It was at this time that the band members made the decision to leave their jobs to work together full-time,.[3] They also released an EP.[2]

From 2007 until 2010, the band supported the event Chesterfest, playing a number of gigs and performing at their "Funday on a Sunday". In February 2010, YFriday also performed alongside the worship team from Abundant Life Church, Blush and Kev Whitmore at the "Heart for Haiti" concert supporting the NXT ministries projects in Port-au-Prince after the January 2010 earthquake.

The band played at the first Big Church Day out in 2009.

YFriday played their final concert as a band in a sold out Newcastle City Hall on 31 October 2010.[4][5]

Band members[edit]

Band membership has changed slightly since the original formation.

Ken Riley[edit]

Riley was the lead singer and guitarist of Yfriday. He is a prolific songwriter and his most globally recognised song to is "Everlasting God" which was co-written with Brenton Brown. The song received a prestigious ASCAP Award in 2008. The song was also nominated for a Dove award. Riley has also collaborated with many other Christian songwriters including Matt Redman, Martin Smith(Delirious) and Tim Hughes.

He co-produced the YFriday album, Great and Glorious, with producer and mixer Sam Gibson (Crowded House, Hillsong United).[6] In 2010, Riley produced the album Supreme for the band The Steels, following their signing to Kingsway/EMI.

Ken is married to Amanda and has three children; Jaime, Jordan and Ben. He is currently the director of Worship at City Church Newcastle, and in 2013 he released his first Solo EP, 'Wondrous Things'.

Dez Minto[edit]

Minto, the band's drummer, is also the managing director of Broadwater Studios Ltd, a recording studio in Gateshead and Minto Music Ltd, PA/lighting hire company with bases in Gateshead and Exeter. He is married to Rachael and has 2 boys Oliver and Sam. After the band split, Minto relocated to Devon.

Danny Smith[edit]

Smith joined the band as bassist in 2001 as they signed their first professional record contract.[3] He is a member of an Anglican church in South Tyneside, where he is part of the worship band and helps with the youth work.[citation needed]

Gav Richards[edit]

Keyboard, backing vocals and second guitar player, Richards was born and grew up in Hartlepool. He attends Newcastle Christian Life Centre, a church affiliated with Hillsong Church. After the band split, YFriday Gav continues to work as a sound engineer/producer for Broadwater Studios as well as playing a number of instruments in an up-and-coming band The Last Spectacular. Gav has an encyclopaedic knowledge of professional wrestling.






Ken Riley

  • Gibson Les Paul Deluxe
  • Gibson Les Paul Junior
  • Fender Telecaster Plus
  • Fender Custom Shop Nocaster
  • Danelectro 59
  • Marshall 1986 50W amplifier
  • Marshall 1960 TV cab
  • Vox AC30 amplifier
  • Taylor GS Acoustic guitar
  • Pedaltrain Pro pedalboard
  • TC Electronic G-System
  • TC Electronic VPD1 Pedal
  • Z-VEX Fuzz Factory pedal,
  • Z-VEX Box of Rock,
  • Electro-Harmonix Big Muff pedal
  • Shure Beta 58 microphone[7]

Danny Smith:

  • Fender Precision Bass guitar
  • Fender Jazz Bass guitar
  • Ashdown ABM-500RC amplifier
  • Ashdown ABM-410T cab
  • Ashdown ABM-210T COMPACT cab
  • Boss TU-2 tuner pedal
  • Boss GEB-7 graphic pedal
  • Ibanez TS9DX Pedal
  • Z-VEX Wooly Mammoth pedal[7]

Gav Richards:

Dez Minto:

  • Jalapeño custom drumkit
  • Sabian cymbals
  • DW bass drum pedals
  • Pearl hardware and stands[7]

External links[edit]


  1. ^ "Top Dog promotions: yfriday". Archived from the original on 10 October 2007. Retrieved 26 October 2007. 
  2. ^ a b c d "WesleyOwen profile of YFriday". Wesley Owen. Retrieved 26 October 2007. 
  3. ^ a b c Cummings, Tony (30 October 2003). "Children of the Revolution". Cross Rhythms (77). Retrieved 26 October 2007. 
  4. ^ "Ken Riley: The Everlasting God man considers the Wondrous Things of God". crossrhythms.co.uk. 
  5. ^ "Yfriday: The Final Farewell, Newcastle's finest say goodbye". crossrhythms.co.uk. 
  6. ^ "Yfriday: The Newcastle worship band spoke about the 'Great & Glorious' album". crossrhythms.co.uk. 
  7. ^ a b c d "YFriday Gear page". Archived from the original on 24 October 2007. Retrieved 8 November 2007.