Some of my favorite kinds of stories are the way God directs his kids' lives, sometimes even without us realizing it. My guest today has a fantastic story about God's plans for his life. Paul Wilbur was set to become an Opera singer and traveled to Italy to learn from the best teachers he could find. That was the groundwork for a different kind of singing career than he had planned. But, an encounter with God, thanks to a meal with a family at church, ultimately changed the direction of Paul’s life, and soon he was singing for a different audience.
One of the things I've enjoyed about working on the Christian Music Archive is discovering artists that I was not previously familiar with. Our world is a big place, and many people are making music celebrating the Savior that we may have never heard of. For example, a while back, I stumbled across the music of Noel Robinson. Noel is from Essex, London, England, and is one of the pioneers of the British Gospel Sound. He has released eight records that I'm aware of and was signed in 2014 to Integrity Records.
The world was introduced to my guest when she released her first album, Child of the Father, in 1994. She followed that album up with My Faith Will Stay, What Matters Most, and There's Joy in the Lord to round out the 1990s. You might figure that everything has gone great for Cheri Keaggy with album titles like these. But like so many of us, life has a way of handing out difficult situations. In addition to several hit songs, Cheri has also had numerous life blows.
Ever since I was in Junior High School, I've been discovering more and more people who make music glorifying God, and one of my more recent discoveries is a man named Calvin Bridges. Calvin is currently a pastor in Chicago, but he has been making music since the 1980s. His album Renew My Spirit was a breakthrough release on the Billboard Gospel Albums chart. Calvin has released twenty albums, many of which feature some fantastic Gospel choirs.
The name Scotty Inman is no stranger to fans of Southern Gospel music. As a founding member of the Triumphant Quartet, he has toured the world for over 20 years and has been part of 22 album projects. He is also the recipient of 4 BMI Songwriter awards, having penned songs for numerous gospel groups. This year, Scotty has released a solo project called Anywhere Jesus Is, and I'm excited to hear the story about this album. So, join me in welcoming Scotty Inman to the Christian Music Archive podcast.
Music has been a part of worship since before King David wrote the Psalms. Throughout history, artists have been using their voices and instruments to interact with God in a variety of ways. Today we are talking with one of those artists. Charlie Hall is the worship pastor at Frontline Church in Oklahoma City. And before that, he was involved in Passion, a more modern-day outgrowth of worship. But besides being a worship leader, father, and all-around great guy, he is a fellow member of the Brotherhood of the Beard.
Music is in Tony Elenburg’s veins. As a recording artist, he’s had ten songs in the top 20 charts. As a songwriter, he’s penned songs for Christian and mainstream artists alike. In addition, he has served as a music pastor and now works as a mentor to worship leaders and songwriters. And just this year, he released a new book, A Worship Shepherd, A Call to Gospel-Centered Worship. I’m excited to catch up with Tony and find out what God is doing in his life today.
Today’s conversation is especially fun for me because I’m chatting with my friend David Nevue. David and I met in college when we lived down the hall from each other in campus housing. I was a video production major, and he, being the creative actor type, was often involved in acting and theater. And we would often be working on the same projects. What I remember most about David, aside from his humor and love of Dungeons and Dragons, was that he was always playing the piano. And shortly after we finished college, he released his first album of solo piano music.
Kendall Payne is my guest today. Kendall splashed onto the music scene in 1999 with her debut album, which earned her a Dove award. Everything seemed to be going great! And then her label dropped her! But God had other plans for her music. She got married, had two kids, and then the rug got pulled out from under her again—another twist in the story. And yet, here she is, still making music, releasing her 6th album in 2021. And she is still seeking to understand what it means to be a child of God.