This month South Floridians have the opportunity to see Christian singer, songwriter and author, Matt Redman, who is currently touring around the United States with Casting Crowns. He will be performing at Wayfest on Nov. 14 at the Cruzan Amphitheater with BarlowGirl, DecembeRadio, Superchick, VOTA, Sarah Reeves, Sevenglory and, of course, Casting Crowns.
Redman, whose most popular hits include, “Blessed Be Your Name,” “Better Is One Day” and “Heart of Worship,” calls his current tour “refreshing.”
“So far, this tour is great. The wonderful thing about Casting Crowns is that they are the same people on stage as they are backstage, and they are a lot of fun to hang out with on the road,” states Redman.
Winner of the 2005 Dove Award for Worship Song of the Year for “Blessed Be Your Name,” Redman also works alongside many other Christian artists, has edited and authored several books about Christianity and is one of the main worship leaders for the Youth Organization, Soul Survivor.
I recently caught up with Matt, who was exceptionally cheerful and humble, for a little Q&A, in order for his fans to get to know him better.
Where it all began
Marisa Zeppieri-Caruana (MZC): “What is the story behind you accepting Christ into your life?”
Matt Redman (MR): :Well, I grew up in church and actually had quite a hard childhood. My father took his own life when I was 7 years old, but instead of turning me away from God, this event actually propelled me towards God. Then, at the age of 10, I had the opportunity to hear Luis Palau in London, and that is when I accepted Christ into my life.”
MZC: “What three words best describe you?”
MR: “English, semi-reserved and short.”
MZC: “At what point did you know that God was calling you into the music industry?”
MR: “A few years after I accepted Christ, I realized that I really loved the worship time at church, and I was really into worship music, and I just knew that it was something that was calling me.”
Music in the making
MZC: “Who are your musical influences?”
MR: “In terms of mainstream music, I really enjoy listening to bands such as U2 and Coldplay, and when it comes to worship music, I stick with Chris Tomlin, Tim Hughes and Delirious. I truly enjoy all of their songs.”
MZC: “What message do you hope to instill in people’s lives through your music?”
MR: “Well, right now, we have a new album out that is called ‘We should not be shaken.’ The theme that I love to teach and that I try to inject into peoples lives is that right now we are living in crazy times, where the world around us is so shakable and changing, but that in the midst of it we can worship a God who is unchanging and unshakeable. I want to give people hope and make them realize that God is our solid rock and firm foundation through it all.”
MZC: “How do you define the word ‘success?'”
MR: “Success is being obedient to God. I think some people search for significance, but really the best path in life is obedience, because that so often leads to significance in life.”
MZC: “What has been your biggest challenge as a musician?”
MR: “I think just remembering time and time again what the heart of worship is. We tend to make worship music very complicated, with lots of production, great sounds, etc. But then you keep coming back to that same place, where you realize it is all about bringing God an offering. There is nothing wrong with all the outward things in a performance, as long as your heart, worshipping God, is the strongest thing.”
MZC: “If you had to choose a profession other than music, what would you have liked to try?”
MR: “Honestly, I don’t really know, although it would probably be something with words. I love working with them.”
MZC: “Name three CDs you are listening to right now?”
MR: “Leeland’s new CD, ‘Love is on the Move,’ David Crowder Band’s ‘Church Music’ and Athlete, which is a band from the U.K. They have a great CD out called ‘Black Swan.'”
MZC: “When did you crossover into writing, and how would you describe your books?”
MR: “I started writing these books about nine years ago. I think that you can teach people a lot about God in worship songs, but there is so much more that you can say. My most recent book, ‘Blessed Be Your Name,’ is an attempt to delve deeper into God and his sovereignty. It is really about how He is in control and the best thing that we can do in our lives is trust Him and worship Him. Really, my books come from the desire to speak on the whole theme of worship.”
MZC: “Describe your God to a nonbeliever?”
MR: “I would talk about the fact that He is higher and greater than you can ever imagine, but at the same time He is also more gracious and kind than you can ever imagine.”
MZC: “What would you like to hear God say to you when you enter Heaven?”
MR: “Honestly, probably the same thing a lot of people want to hear, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant.'”
To learn more about Matt Redman’s current tour and find out more about Wayfest, visit MattRedman.com.