As a brief introduction I am a Christian singer/songwriter living just outside Portland, Oregon with my lovely wife Jessica. I have been leading worship and writing songs for more than 20 years and was once described as "Dave Matthews sings Rich Mullins."Read More...
So many of the songs I write are personal devotions and reminders of God's faithfullness (even when I am faithless), his amazing grace and the way he is our Jehovah Jireh, our provider! What is so amazing to me is to get to share these songs with other people and have them respond and relate in ways that make the songs personal to them as well! I love hearing how certain songs have ministered or reminded someone of something awesome that God has done or is currently doing in their lives. So please keep coming up and sharing your stories with me. I love to hear them!
And that's the real goal behind my music, to point to someone other than me—to point to Jesus. Hopefully I do it in such a way that my songs truly reflect his character and his amazing love and make people want to know him more. I want to draw people in so they can relate to my struggles but also show them the hope and strength I've found in him!
It all comes down to why I write these songs and what I hope they do for those who hear them. Paul puts it rather succinctly in 1 Corinthians 13 that it doesn't matter what amazing accomplishments I have or how much I give to the poor; at the end of the day if I "do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal." I even put these verses and this thought into song in "Without Love" on my "Coffee Shop Songs" CD.
I don't want to come across as another "holier-than-thou" Christian who only points a finger and burdens people with guilt. We all struggle with enough burdens already and need to have them lifted, not more added to the top of the teetering pile! It wouldn't be "Good News" if it wasn't freeing and something to jump up and down and shout about! I hope I can show through my songs how truly good the Good News is, how freeing it is to have our burdens of guilt and sin lifted from our shoulders by his amazing grace!
So please feel free to stop by and take a listen. Join me on this journey of struggles and blessings alike, and I hope these songs make you smile, give you comfort in grief, have you clapping your hands in praise and leave you encouraged in your faith.
For those who really want some biographical bullet points my musical journey began in the womb with my dad playing guitar and banjo and my parents subjecting me to CSNY and John Denver. My parents divorced
when I was young, but the musical heritage had planted roots that would spring up later.
In the early 80s shortly after my mom remarried a wonderful godly man, my parents became missionaries and joined YWAM, serving at the Kona base in Hawaii. Even as a child, while my parents were team leaders and later on staff, I witnessed amazing acts of God's faithfullness and answers to specific prayer. There were some difficult and rough patches, but looking back I can see how much growing up in such a tight knit community, where we served and praised God on a daily basis, really impacted my life and later on my songwriting.
At a young age I noodled on piano by ear but it wasn't until we moved back to Oregon at the start of junior high that I began to learn my first musical instrument—the flute. I still play flute occasionay on some songs, but it wouldn't be until my junior year in high school that I picked up the guitar—somewhat by accident as the lesser of two evils. I had an open period I needed to fill and the only two options were ceramics or beginning guitar. Since the guitar class was taught by my band director, and I was already more musically inclined, guitar won out!
And that marked the beginning of my songwriting days in 1990. I continued to write songs when I went away to college at Oregon State University in 1992 (Go Beavs!), and began to lead worship for Bible studies, Campus Crusade, Young Life and at various churches. Since then I have written several hundred songs and recorded over a dozen CDs, playing for small living rooms, coffee shops and for crowds of thousands. At the end of the day, though, I much prefer gathering together with a group of friends and leading worship in a small home group, so if you have room on your couch let me know and I'd be happy to swing on by!