Blog by Josh Maze
No matter the guest, they’re the “absolute best” on the “absolute best” TV show or film. Isn’t it amazing that every. single. night… Jimmy’s “favorite” person is on the show… and we believe him? I believe him. I follow him. All the way to the desk where he is absolutely enthralled by the special guest. Completely engaged. As a matter of fact, he’s so engaged – I’m engaged. I’m engaged through him. All the sudden I find myself interested in the guest / the subject / the conversation. Through Jimmy’s excitement & passion, I find myself involved. I never knew that I could become such a fan of some random C-list celebrity… but seeing Jimmy as such a fanatic about this person, here I am. Participating.
Here are 5 things every worship leader in the world should learn from Jimmy Fallon.
1. He’s always smiling.
This may be the most important and underrated aspect of Jimmy’s career. He smiles. A lot. Like… constantly. And that’s really good because, he’s in our living rooms and our bedrooms. And we want happy / positive people in our home. Smiles break down barriers. Smiles invite you in. Every worship leader who doesn’t smile while singing about Love… Grace… Hope… Jesus… is completely missing the mark. If you’re not smiling, you’re not winning. If you’re not smiling, you probably don’t look friendly. You might even be coming across too serious, overly spiritual, or arrogant. Let’s avoid that at all cost.
2. He’s got great energy.
It’s rarely hype. It’s always excitement. He loves what he does, and it’s obvious. But check this out… Jimmy Fallon has bad days too. He’s a human being. But you may never know it. We don’t see it. He presses through and does his job… making us feel at home. People need a confident leader to bring the energy to the room. Energy is contagious. Bad / low energy is contagious. Great / high energy is contagious. Be yourself, yes. Be vulnerable, of course. But get excited about what you’re doing!
3. He’s humble.
I’ve heard a ton of different people make comments about Jimmy. “He’s awesome… He’s the best… I love him… I have a crush on him… He’s literally perfect…” (And those are just from my wife… But I have never heard anyone say anything about his ego, his pride, or his arrogance. Yet – he’s one of the biggest stars in the world. He’s self-deprecating. He knows his strengths – He knows his weaknesses. He doesn’t take himself too seriously. He’s quick to laugh at himself. That’s endearing. I like being around people like that, don’t you? With his ratings up 27% in the households & up 40% in the 18-49 demographic. Yes. You do. We do.
4. He’s prepared.
Monologues, singing, dancing, bits, sketches, dialogues, interviews… he does it all. And he’s ready. We think we have something to get ready for on Sundays? Once a week? Imagine having to be fresh, funny, smart, & interesting 5 nights a week. He nails it. And yes, he’s got a great team around him that help him prep. What can we learn from this as worship leaders? What can we take away? Very little excellence happens in life without proper preparation and planning. Let’s do our part to prepare, and let God do what only He can do.
5. He’s relevant.
‘Relevant’ isn’t my favorite word ever. But let’s remind ourselves… It’s a real word:
Relevant adjective rel·e·vant \ˈre-lə-vənt\ relating to a subject in an appropriate way
If I tried doing what we do at Highpoint at the big Episcopal church down the street, it wouldn’t work. I’d be dead in the water. You have to speak the language of the people you are speaking to. You have to relate. You have to know who is in the room and have an idea of where they are coming from. Jimmy’s show is so relevant, it’s ridiculous. The monologues are literally centered around the day’s news, the day’s gossip, and even the day’s tragedy. The interviews are centered around the film or TV show that just premiered or is about to premier. Why do so many churches miss this? We at Highpoint have decided to teach timeless truths in a timely way. That’s a Non-negotiable.
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So, all in all, while Jimmy is leading us in the worship of the people he adores – like Bruce Springsteen, Paul McCartney, Tom Cruise, Justin Timberlake, or Brad Pitt, we still have a lot to learn. And if we are leading people in the worship of JESUS, how much more then should we be smiling, energetic, humbled, prepared, & relevant? Jimmy, if you’re out there, I for one, am inspired to be a better worship leader. Thank you.
Josh Maze is the Worship Pastor & Creative Director of Highpoint Church in Memphis, TN. Josh grew up as the son of Jackson, Mississippi Church Planters. He’s a husband, a pastor, a songwriter, & a creative who loves old cars, new restaurants, & the Grizzlies. Josh loves God, people, & life.
NASHVILLE, Tenn.—Faithful, the highly-anticipated live worship set from GRAMMY®-nominated NewSong, debuted at #1 on Nielsen SoundScan’s Praise & Worship chart for the week ending March 15. The critically-acclaimed Integrity Music project also landed at #3 on Nielsen SoundScan’s Current Contemporary Christian chart, marking the chart’s highest debut of the week.
NewSong’s first live recording since 2005’s Rescue, Faithful released March 10 and features songwriting credits from such leading artists as Matthew West, Matt Redman, All Sons & Daughters, Elias Dummer (The City Harmonic), and Desperation Band, among others.
CCMmagazine.com says of the project, “This is a perfect variety of songs—well suited to their vocal work, smart musicianship—and proves that even after a decade since their last recorded worship offering, they are, indeed, Faithful.”
The 13-song collection was produced by Nathan Nockels (Chris Tomlin, Passion) and recorded live, in-the-round at NewSong’s home church near Atlanta. Highlighted by the title-cut and debut single, an original co-penned by NewSong’s Russ Lee, All Sons & Daughters’ David Leonard and Leslie Jordan, and Alli Rogers, the album also offers NewSong’s version of the Desperation Band-penned “Make A Way”; the original “Hallelujah (Bride In White),” co-written with The City Harmonic’s Elias Dummer; and “Keep Me Close,” a soaring prayer of surrender co-penned by Matthew West.
Faithful is available as a CD or CD/DVD combo featuring video selections filmed during the live recording, as well as exclusive interviews with members of NewSong. A standard digital album and digital “deluxe” (featuring bonus videos) is also available.
NewSong is currently performing “Faithful” at 47 Winter Jam Tour Spectacular stops around the country. Created and hosted by the band, Winter Jam—which has seen multiple sellouts to date this year—is headlined by GRAMMY® Award-winning rockers Skillet and features 10 of Christian music’s top artists.
With a career spanning more than 30 years, 19 albums, 20 #1 Christian radio singles, a GRAMMY® Award-nomination and induction into the Georgia Music Hall of Fame, among numerous other achievements, NewSong is among the most respected artists and mentors in Christian music today. Their unparalleled ministry has been highlighted by such defining songs as “Arise, My Love,” “The Christmas Shoes” and “Rescue,” while the group’s blockbuster Winter Jam Tour Spectacular has ranked as Pollstar’s #1 first-quarter tour in the world for four consecutive years, providing a powerful platform for the Gospel in major arenas around the country since 1995.
Originally published by Worship Leader magazine.
It is time for your weekly rehearsal again. The music is printed and ready for your instrumentalist to receive. You have studied the music and know the flow and instrumentation of each song. You know exactly how you will lead your music team through the rehearsal. But, have you considered how you will pastor them in your rehearsal?
We must prepare for the music on Sunday morning! It must be excellent, but does our pursuit of musical perfection get in the way of our ability to really care for the souls of those that God has placed on our teams? More often than I care to admit, I have been more concerned about the quality of music that has been produced by those I have lead. A few years ago I knew something needed to change in the way that I was leading rehearsals, but I didn’t want to make changes at the expense of being musically prepared for Sunday. Therefore, I committed to these four practices which have helped our teams be better prepared for Sunday and given me greater opportunity to lead them pastorally during the rehearsal time.
1. Be Prompt
While it seems simple, being on time is a pastoral issue. This is a substantial way that we can communicate to the team that we care about them. Being on time doesn’t mean a leader is simply present when the rehearsal starts; it means he is ready. Nothing is more frustrating for a team or threatens the worship leader’s pastoral integrity like a group of musicians watching him set up his equipment while they are ready to rehearse. Being on time means being ready on time!
2. Be Prepared
No one should be more prepared at a rehearsal than the leader. After all, it is hard to lead a team that is more prepared. Preparation takes time, so we should budget for that in our weekly responsibilities. The more comfortable we get with our team the greater the temptation will be to just “wing-it” in the rehearsal, but we must fight this temptation because our lack of preparation can also communicate a lack of care for our people. If we are prepared and structured with our time, we will allow for more time to address spiritual issues.
3. Be Intentional
One of the most difficult challenges to overcome in pastoring a team during the rehearsal time is budgeting time for pastoral moments (devotion, prayer, etc.) and time for perfecting the music for Sunday morning. However, perhaps we don’t have to separate the two categories as much as we might think. There are many pastoral moments within and around a rehearsal, but we will need our pastoral antennas up to notice them – we must be intentional. Many of these happen before rehearsal begins and after it ends. If you arrive early and stay late you will have many more opportunities to serve your team members. Also, being aware of the lyrical theology in the songs that you are leading can provide an opportunity for saying a brief word about the Gospel truths that the church will be singing on Sunday.
4. Be Authentic
We can lead and serve our teams by living openly before them. They need to know that we are sinners who have been saved by the same grace that they have experienced. This doesn’t mean that we confess a litany of sins to begin each rehearsal, but that we live openly and authentically – with wisdom – before them. It is our human condition to want others to think more highly of us than they ought, but we must fight against this this desire for honor. While we may have more education than many on our team or may be more musically skilled, we are just as sinful and just as saved. We need to believe that and live authentically before them.
It ought not be that we fail in our pastoral responsibilities at the expense of producing good music. Let’s be resolved to serve and lead our people while also producing good music. This investment is sure to produce fruit that extends beyond the rehearsal.
Andrew Lucius is the Associate Pastor of Worship at Throne of Grace Community Church and Instructor of Church Music and Christian Worship at Boyce College of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky. He is married to Rebecca and is the father of Molly (2) and Matthew (9 months).
Recently, I was sitting in our office thinking about what to share at our next Team Night. I had gone in early so I could get some space. If you’re like me, solitude is about your only chance to hear a thought. With 6-year-old twins and a 3-year-old at home, life can feel a bit like an acrobat hoping the bar shows up at the right time. It’s a rush. It’s rewarding. It’s a passion, but it teeters on death! Ok, so that was dramatic, but I think you get my point. So, as I sat there with a blank screen looking at me with condescending emptiness, I realized something that has now had extraordinary impact on our team and me.
Look at Luke 18. Jesus tells a provocative story about a woman, widowed and in need of protection. She shows up everyday at the courthouse and makes a scene. She needs rescue, and her best hope is a corrupt judge to hear her plea. She doesn’t have an appointment. She’s disruptive. She’s persistent. Her need is real, and her heart is pure. So the basic laws of manners and etiquette will just have to take a back seat. Eventually, the judge gives her what she desires, not because he’s moved with compassion about her situation but because he’s annoyed by her constant disruptions. Jesus tells his people that because of her persistence, she got what she desired. Of course, he then highlights the good Father who is not corrupt but will surely come to our rescue. Now here’s the stinger. He says, “BUT how much of that kind of persistent faith will the Son of Man find on the earth when he returns?” (Luke 18:8 MSG)
I’m not one to blame the culture or world we live in for our difficulties, so what I’m about to say is not a finger-pointing situation but rather an observation. With the amazing free-market-world we live in, what are the things that hold us? What keeps our attention? It’s the newest, sexiest, coolest product that not only delivers something great but it also convinces us that what we once held in our hands is old, dated, and really uncool.
I sat there and had to confess something to myself and to God. With 50-60 volunteers under my care, I have fallen into the same thinking a marketing guru would have about selling the newest phone. I must wow, woo and lead this team into the great and wild unknown with reasons why it’s better, sexier and worth following. Now don’t get me wrong, we have an amazing team of musicians, singers, and creative and they didn’t put this on me. I was putting it on myself.
Though I LOVE vision, direction and leadership, I began to wonder if my approach was creating “consumers” in the worship ministry by constantly encouraging NEW vision, NEW direction, NEW breath. So there I sat, looking at the empty page when I realized that the vision I had pumped into our team started feeling old because it was articulated a month ago. Then I looked at the question Jesus was asking, “…Will I find that type of persistent faithfulness on the earth upon my return?”
I shut down the computer. Not because I didn’t want to prepare but because I knew I wouldn’t need notes for this. In front of our team, I shared about the persistent widow and confessed my own temptation to re-sell everyone in the room each time we gathered. My vulnerability invited something into the room. We felt it.
Then I said, “We’re gonna get back to beating the drum of persistent faithfulness.” We started to awaken as we thought about prayers we once prayed as a team or individually that we stopped praying because the answer wasn’t quick enough. We leaned in as the Father beckoned us to get back to those prayers. Our role is to beat the drum of persistence and not stop. We will be the persistent ones he finds faithful.
The prayer that I had stopped praying publicly was the one I shared with our team: Let us pray for an outpouring of the Holy Spirit to refresh, heal, and renew. We did just that. The rest of the meeting was an emotional rush of the team leading out, praying for things that have not been uttered for too long. The innocence and simplicity was stunning.
I’m a vision guy. I just love it. I won’t stop promoting vision, but by the grace of God, I pray I never forget what this woman at the courthouse taught us.
To anyone reading, pick up the prayers on the bookshelf that have sat there for years collecting dust. The good Father wants to hear them. Be faithful with your prayers and watch the faithfulness of God remind us that we are alternative people. The world may need something every other day to capture their attention. Let us never forget that we need to beat the drum of faithfulness, and that takes time.
Thanks to Hallels.com for the review of NewSong’s “Faithful” release!
Prime Cuts: This Beating Heart, Keep Me Close, This I Believe (The Creed)
Way back in 2001, after being in the Christian music business for over 20 years, NewSong suddenly exploded far beyond the Christian music scene and became a worldwide phenomenon with one little song called “Christmas Shoes.” Originally released as a bonus track on their 2000 CD “Sheltering Tree,” little did NewSong realize this festive song had a way of topping the Billboard Adult Contemporary Chart for three weeks, zoomed right up the country singles chart and caused a stir on the pop chart. Many a lesser artist in the shoes of NewSong would have exploited their expeditious fame to venture into more verdant forays of recording a hit country or pop record. But not NewSong; the passion of these Godly men has never been for greater fame but steadily proclaiming the Gospel of Jesus through their music. 10 years after their last worship album, they have partnered with Integrity Music, the imprint that has made it their mandate to charter worship songs for the church, for the release of “Faithful.”
Recorded live at the First Baptist Church in Woodstock, Georgia, NewSong’s Integrity Music debut “Faithful” is a bombastic stadium-filling worship rifled with enormous electric loops and propulsive sounding drums. And partly to thank for such a big sound is the involvement of veteran producer Nathan Nockels (Chris Tomlin, Passion). “Faithful” is an album that will easily gain traction with the casual listener because there is a sandwich of old and new songs. Instead of blasting at us with a surge of new tunes, NewSong respectfully eases us into the worship experience with the familiar sounds of a state-of-the-art rock rendition of the hymn “Doxology.”
Other covers that are interspersed with the newer compositions include Matt Redman’s “This Beating Heart.” What is most satisfying is the short spoken introduction before the song which functions as an apt way in drawing out the song’s meaning with greater perspicuity. Though their version of Hillsong’s “This I Believe (The Creed)” sounds like a sonic twin of its original, it’s still one of the more theologically meaty songs out there balanced with a stately well-crafted tune. Two thumbs up are in order for their cover of Desperation Band’s “Make a Way,” a big power ballad that has so much Biblical echoes from the stories of the Exodus and the new Exodus in Isaiah.
As for their originals, the highlight is the intimate spartan-sounding pop ballad “Keep Me Close,” which was co-written by Matthew West. Co-penned by NewSong frontman Russ Lee and All Sons & Daughters’ David Leonard and Leslie Jordan, the lead single and title cut “Faithful” finds the focus rightly placed on God whose faithfulness is what keeps us alive. Though “Angels” recycles every clichéd troupes imaginable in worship songs, such as the “ooo-ohhh” riff, the meshing up of stanzas of an old hymn in a new song (in this case it’s “Amazing Grace”), and the “pause for the congregation to clap along” move, it’s still an undeniably catchy song that will get us singing along.
As far as this new album is concerned, “Faithful” isn’t just an adjective used in reference to God, but they have kept abreast with the grand themes of the Gospel, and they have “faithfully” executed them in ways that are loud, memorable, and catchy.
Read more at: www.hallels.com
INTEGRITY MUSIC ANNOUNCES THE RELEASE OF A.D. WORSHIP ANTHEMS, INSPIRED BY THE EPIC TV EVENT, A.D. THE BIBLE CONTINUES
Recording Features All Sons & Daughters, Paul Baloche, Lincoln Brewster, Darlene Zschech, Desperation Band, Newsboys, Jeremy Camp, Natalie Grant, Kim Walker-Smith, Kari Jobe, Rend Collective, More
Songs Complement A.D. The Bible Continues Themes, 12-Week NBC Series Premieres Easter 2015
From executive producers Roma Downey and Mark Burnett, creators of The Bible mini-series, which garnered over 100 million viewers, and the feature film Son Of God, comes the epic TV event, A.D. The Bible Continues, which will premiere on NBC starting Easter Sunday, April 5, 2015. “A.D” picks up where “The Bible” left off, continuing the greatest story ever told and exploring the exciting and inspiring events that followed the Crucifixion of Christ. In conjunction with this spectacular new dramatic television series, Integrity Music, in association with WILDFIRE7, is releasing Worship Anthems Inspired By A.D. The Bible Continues on March 3.
This new album brings together some of the most well-known songs sung in churches around the world with such renowned Christian artists and worship leaders as All Sons & Daughters, Lincoln Brewster, Paul Baloche, Jeremy Camp, Darlene Zschech, Desperation Band, Natalie Grant, Kim Walker-Smith, Kari Jobe, Rend Collective, Newsboys and more. Each of the songs on Worship Anthems Inspired By A.D. The Bible Continues was specifically chosen to complement the themes of the twelve A.D. television episodes. “After watching The Bible and seeing the impact that this telling of the Biblical story had, I was anxious to see what Mark and Roma’s next project would look like,” said C. Ryan Dunham, President of Integrity Music. “So I was pleased to learn that they were working on another series, this time telling the story of the early church… our hope is that Worship Anthems deepens the viewing experience of A.D. The Bible Continues and gives people a ‘take away’ musical resource that keeps the wonder alive while pointing listeners to Jesus.”
“Music is such a wonderful way to continue telling the stories of ‘A.D.’,” says executive producers Roma Downey and Mark Burnett, “and we are excited that Integrity Music is able to bring together such incredible artists to make this happen.”Leading up to the launch of A.D. The Bible Continues, Burnett and Downey will host special screenings in cities around the U.S., sharing scenes from the TV event. This includes a screening with worship guests All Sons & Daughters on March 5 in Colorado Springs, CO, headquarters of Integrity and its parent ministry David C Cook. A previous screening with Integrity’s Latin-American worship leader Christine D’Clario was held in Miami on Feb. 6.
The full track and featured artist listing for Worship Anthems Inspired By A.D. The Bible Continues
follows: 1) We Believe – Newsboys (See “A.D.” video trailer featuring this song at this link.) 2) Buried In The Grave – All Sons & Daughters 3) Oceans (Where Feet May Fail) – WILDFIRE7 4) Spirit Break Out – Kim Walker-Smith 5) Make A Way (feat. Jon Egan) – Desperation Band 6) Overcome – Jeremy Camp 7) Great I Am (feat. Danny Gokey and Sharon Wilbur) – Paul Wilbur 8) Your Great Name – Natalie Grant 9) Healer – Kari Jobe 10) Build Your Kingdom Here – Rend Collective 11) There Is Power – Lincoln Brewster 12) Breathe – The Brilliance 13) Your Name (feat. Kathryn Scott) – Paul Baloche 14) Victor’s Crown (radio version) – Darlene Zschech
About A.D. The Bible Continues:
A.D. The Bible Continues is an uplifting and harrowing journey through the beginning moments of the birth of the church picking up where The Bible mini-series left off. A.D. follows the first ten chapters of the Book of Acts exploring the aftermath of Christ’s death and its profound impact on his disciples, his mother Mary, and key political and religious leaders of the era, an impact that would completely change the world. A.D.will take its audience from the intense sorrow of Christ’s ultimate sacrifice to the awe-inspiring wonder of the Resurrection and deep into his disciples’ struggle to survive against opposition from every side as they continued to share his message of love with everyone, everywhere. The series includes compelling context around the Biblical text, focusing initially on the Book of Acts while integrating dramatic history to help tell the full story of the people and their era. The audience will enter the world of the Apostles, of Pilate, Caiaphas, Herod Antipas and others, all from their own points of view. Each episode aims to bring the Biblical world to life in all of its grit and glory.
Premiering on NBC beginning Easter Sunday 2015 (April 5th), families will be able to tune in to watch A.D. unfold for 12 consecutive Sundays culminating with the finale of season 1 on June 21. Churches and Faith organizations all across the country will be given the opportunity to teach through the Book of Acts in conjunction with the series and participate in Bible reading plans focused on the Book of Acts from Easter through Father’s Day. Endorsed by a broad range of faith leaders like Bishop T.D. Jakes, Wilfredo De Jesús, Cardinal Donald Wuerl, Dr. Ronnie Floyd, Dr. Jo Anne Lyon, Joel and Victoria Osteen, Rick Warren, Max Lucado and Andy Stanley, A.D. The Bible Continues has also been covered by People Magazine, NBC TODAY show, USA Today, The Hollywood Reporter and many more. A trailer for the video can be seen at this link. For more information, please visit: ShareADtheSeries.com.
About Integrity Music:
Integrity is the worship music recording and publishing home to a variety of artists and ministries around the globe including: All Sons & Daughters, Paul Baloche, New Life Worship, Planetshakers, Worship Central, Covenant Worship, Life Worship, Dustin Smith, Desperation Band, Bluetree, Lincoln Brewster, Christine D’Clario, Stu G, Beth Croft, Sheldon Bangera, Danilo Montero, Jacobo Ramos, and Dove Award winning and nominated songwriters Jennie Lee Riddle, Israel Houghton, Jared Anderson, Michael Farren and Michael Neale.
Integrity Music is part of the David C Cook family, a nonprofit global resource provider serving the Church with life-transforming materials. Headquartered in Colorado Springs, Colorado, and Eastbourne, UK, Integrity is committed to taking songs of substance to the local church and its leaders around the world. Integrity currently controls over 7,000 songs, including the No. 1 radio hit “We Believe” (Newsboys) as well as church standards “Revelation Song,” “Open The Eyes Of My Heart,” “Your Great Name” and “I Am Free.” Additional information can be found at www.integritymusic.com.
WILDFIRE7, a division of Wildfire Media Group, Inc., is a new concept in faith based multi media content production, management and marketing based in the heart of the entertainment capitols of the world, New York City and Nashville, Tennessee. Our mission is “To ignite, empower and serve the Church and the creative community and influence the culture with life changing media content that ignites the world around us.”
WorshipMob is a Colorado collective of worship leaders and musicians who have connected with a global audience through over 8 million Youtube views of their impassioned, home-grown videos. Founded by Colorado Springs worship leaders Sean Mulholland and Garrett Chynoweth almost four years ago, the group began as a weekly gathering between two local worship teams. Today, the “Mob” represents 25 local churches through 70-80 ministry leaders who meet weekly to worship, pray together and encourage one another. Though, as Mulholland states, the meetings are “open to anyone who wants to come soak in the presence of God.”
For the first time, Worship Mob shares their songs through a full-length album, Carry the Fire. The project consists of 12 tracks, including some of Worship Mob’s most popular “covers” and original compositions that reflect their heart for unified, creative & passionate expressions of worship.
Carry the Fire is a breath of fresh air that boldly proclaims the reality of the Father’s heart. Through their lyrics and melodies, WorshpMob skillfully and passionately reveals their identity as Sons and Daughters of Abba. Their music and style carry a much different feel than many of the artist or worship band records that are common today. With a mob style sound, the lyrics and melodies stay fresh with a sense of expectancy and anticipation that lead the listener deeper into a worship encounter.
More than just another record, Carry the Fire is the result of years of pursuing His presence and of the mob pursuing connection with each other. If you love to worship, grab this record. If you are a worship leader, you will find several congregational friendly songs that you can plug into your set right away.
Art—in any form—is meant to be savored, experienced and relished. David Gungor and John Arndt, known as liturgical band The Brilliance, craft music with this belief in mind, giving listeners time and space to fully soak in the beauty that lies in every lyric and sonic nuance. This is true for their independent projects, including four albums and two EPs, as well as their new full-length album Brother.
It’s an appropriate title, considering the two men have shared a brotherly bond since childhood, tracing their families’ relationship back to the 70s when their fathers played together in a wedding band. And following in their father’s footsteps, David and John have played together in a variety of bands throughout the years, including time spent playing in Gungor, a band fronted by David’s brother, Michael.
Their latest collaboration began a few years back when David, then leading worship at a church in Tulsa, wanted to craft original music written around the liturgical calendar for his congregation. He sent some ideas to John, who was living in Austin at the time. From there, the two began creating and recording under the moniker of The Brilliance. Since then, David, who is now at Trinity Grace Church in New York City, and John, who now resides in Chicago, have been blending a classical aesthetic with traditional pop form to create a sound built on piano and string arrangements that, while comfortingly familiar in many ways, is unique within the space of worship music.
”While all of The Brilliance’s original songs are written from a larger faith perspective, not all ten tracks on Brother are meant to be sung corporately. Some cuts were crafted with reflection in mind.” David offers. “Oftentimes, worship music, in particular within the church, has been something where you tried to get people to be as loud as possible. ‘Stand up with me; sing as loud as you can’—which is great, but I thought about my own life within the context of prayer…learning how to listen to God and not always speak,” David shares. “There’s nothing wrong with that—but sometimes it’s good to have another voice.”
From the opening call of peace and unity on “Brother” to the confessional tone of “Yahweh,” each song leads listeners on a winding road that travels to dark depths full of laments before reaching a hopeful benediction.
The title track was written in response to a trip David took with a group of songwriters to Israel, where he saw firsthand the confusing collision of Jewish, Muslim and Christian cultures—equally an enlightening and disconcerting dichotomy. “We just went to learn stories with no agenda other than open hands and listening ears,”he explains, but back home David had a bout with writer’s block and a longing for peace and justice—a theme that permeates Brother. Confessional cut “Yahweh” emerged six months later when he was finally able to put words to his experience.
“For me, the reason I follow the teaching of Jesus Christ is because it actually brings life and truth, and it transcends certain boundaries,” David maintains. “We love art, and we love the idea of making art within the Christian narrative… We want to push boundaries artistically to inspire the imagination.”For more information on The Brilliance, visit http://thebrilliancemusic.com.
Her songs are sung weekly by a world choir with Shout to the Lord alone being sung by an estimated 30 million each week. Her songs and recordings have helped produce 16 Gold and Platinum albums. Her books have been translated into 19 languages. Her passion for mentoring worship leaders has fueled and inspired a new generation serving and leading around the world. Her heart for orphans and widows helped launch HOPE:Rwanda and HOPE:Global, now serving thousands of the world’s poorest children.
In Jesus’ Name: A Legacy of Worship and Faith is a celebration of the ministry of Darlene Zschech. This collection contains 14 songs, including Shout To The Lord, The Potter’s Hand, Amazing Grace and In Jesus’ Name. Also included is a new song My Highest Hope, which was written by Darlene during her recent battle with cancer. This album declares that we can have hope and victory In Jesus’ Name!
All Sons & Daughters begin their spring tour with Jamie George & Sandra McCracken on February 8th! Check out the dates below and go to http://www.allsonsanddaughters.com/tour for tickets and more information.
Feb. 8 – Starkville, MS
Feb. 9 – West Monroe, LA
Feb. 10 – Houston, TX
Feb. 11 – San Antonio, TX
Feb. 13 – Addison, TX
Feb. 14 – Shreveport, LA
Feb. 23 – Glendora, CA
Feb. 26 – Redding, CA
Feb. 27 – Gresham, OR
Feb. 28 – Seattle, WA
Mar. 2 – Fresno, CA
Mar. 17 – Charlotte, NC
Mar. 20 – Phoenixville, PA
Mar. 21 – Powhatan, VA
Mar. 23 – Virginia Beach, VA
Apr. 7 – Indianapolis, IN
Apr. 8 – Chicago, IL
Apr. 9 – Grand Haven, MI
Apr. 10 – Grove City, OH
Apr. 20 – Bolivar, MO
Apr. 23 – Lakewood, CO