What a THRILL!
I just got back from an amazing weekend in San Antonio, TX at the World Discipleship Summit with 18,000 Christians from 96 countries! What a JOY to sing on the BIG STAGE for GOD!
I was honored to be the opening act for an International Variety show on the AT&T Center Stage. The show was Saturday night, July 7th at 7:30ish- right after the main assembly for the conference. Diana Wick, Cassandra Williams and Solita Price backed me up live while Ralph Kincsheck, Chris & Gary Gibbons and John Vicaire backed me up on the tracks. We did it BIG! It was a blast! The response was fantastic!
We debuted 3 new songs from the new CD coming out this fall: “EPIC“, “Standing on the Rock” and “Let My Light Shine” and one old favorite from the Grace CD: “Get in the Water.”– We got to do more than many of the other artists did- again- HONORED.
Back in January it was announced that our churches in New England would be having a theme for 2012: “EPIC”. I immediately was inspired to Write a song. My song “EPIC” is a big stage/ concert piece. I was hoping to do it in our home church in the North- but that hasn’t felt right for the regular Sunday service… It rocks, it’s fun... And it was the perfect opener for our show in Texas. I left the guitar on the stand and worked the stage. The back up singers sang their hearts out- That was the most wonderful way to debut that song to the Kingdom!
But, even a few weeks before that, I wasn’t even scheduled to sing in Texas- and the late notice in my opportunity ended up making it quite a scramble to find available singers and to prepare our 4 song pre-release, the back up tracks etc in time. The truth is, I had been trying to contact the leaders organizing this conference for months to get involved with the worship and the music in general. I wondered at what God was trying to teach me by keeping the doors all apparently closed. But I see now that he had a plan- he always does.
I was so encouraged when Melissa, a friend at church, shared that one thing she brought home from the conference was that Faith is not just praying and waiting to see what God will do- it is taking action on your prayers and watching God work to open and shut doors and direct you. Sometimes I can feel guilty that I am working too hard and maybe being too self reliant- then I see how God uses my effort… (And sometimes I obsess at how he doesn’t give me success when I’ve worked hard- but not this time!) God blesses our faith put into action!
I did eventually get asked to sing both in the showcase and the singles choir on Friday morning. God is so good!
I went into the actual conference on very little sleep- we had done a couple all nighters getting the pre-release finished… It includes the first three songs I mentioned above and “Hope Faith Love.” We even got the back up tracks mastered by the talented Jonathan Wyner so they would sound good on the big stage!
I got new hair and new killer heels, I put on the eye lashes and rehearsed my new back up singers! I ended up pulling in Solita and Cassandra the day before- I really wanted to have a bigger presentation than me and Diane and the tracks- and it hadn’t worked out with my regular singers (other than Diana)… God Bless Diana (for sticking with me!) and Cassandra and Solita!
The sound check was thrill! Just practicing on the that huge stage and the echo when they turned up the mains- WOW. I had butterflies all afternoon! And they asked me to add another song at the last minute (was originally two- I stretched it to three and then they asked me to sing four! so we spent the rest of the afternoon getting Ralph to prepare and email another track to Cassandra’s computer! Thanks Ralph! Thanks Cassandra!
I am so grateful to everyone involved! The actual show went great! Some people even held up their “Lights” (cell phones) during “Let my Light Shine!”!
Then we stood on the rock- a taste of politics in an election year- no specifics (in fact, I wrote it during the last presidential campaign!- But don’t tell!) – even when politics has me all twisted up- I know I’m “Standing on the Rock”!
And finally we got the whole audience singing with us on our closer- a hit from the Grace With Jazz On Top CD: “Get in the Water”! A country rocker to end our Texas show! And oh that shout chorus at the end sure was amazing with all those voices from the audience!
What a fantastic night! -I also made soooo many new friends from around the world including many other countries we hope to visit on tour! If you would like me or us to sing at your local church or event- ANYWHERE- please don’t hesitate to contact me! Julieksings@comcast.net
Then I hoofed back to the Gonzales Center to hawk CD’s at my CD table till midnight! I paid with a very tired voice- only just now recovering… but very rewarding results:)
So the New CD IS available for pre-order- and the Pre-release of 4 songs is a free benefit of supporting the project! Right now you can send me a check for $15 and I’ll get you both the pre-release (as mp3’s) and the final either as mp3’s or hard copy (free shipping). I need to set up a pre-order on my website- working on it:) Stay tuned!
To God be the Glory!