For a guy who doesn’t like being surrounded by big crowds of people, and loathes the sticky feeling of cotton candy and soda on the bottom of his sandals, this sure has been the summer of festivals.
The CHB received yet another momentous invitation to lead worship at Kingdom Bound 2010 last week in Darien Lake, NY. After a wonderful (and much needed) rehearsal the night before in Rochester, we took the stage under the immense Integrity Music Worship Tent and turned up the volume. Teaspoon had to stay in Orlando last minute, so veteran and long-time-friend Robbie Tyler sat in; solid!
Like all venues, there are pros and cons with a festival setting.
The major con is that people tend to be very transient; they migrate from one stage to another like a swarm of light-bulb driven house flies with ADD. Yeah, yeah, I know. I’m in that crowd, too. I’m just saying. But I think it’s legit. There’s simply so much to see that people tend to be over stimulated and lose interest easily unless something’s really good. And as such, it’s sometimes hard to read an audience, and likewise have a building (or even consistent) momentum with a festival crowd in worship.
The major pro is that–unlike church gigs where the general rule is to play 80% of material people know (the kinds most worship bands dread ever playing “one more time”) and 20% original–in a festival the audience kind of expects the “artist” to play his or her own stuff. So that percentage was flipped. And my band loved it. It gave us a chance to play a ton of the material off our new record (Editor’s Note: Coming out shortly; approving the final master and art work this week! Thanks for your patience!). And I think people really dug it. (And a big shout out to my ASL interpreter, Anne Marie Sureau, for doing a stand-up job!).
I not only got to make memories with my band, but with my little tribe, too. Eva, Luik and Judah loved the rides, the sugar, and the sites and sounds. Needless to say I think they were “out cold” within the first 30 seconds of the car ride back to the hotel. We also got to reconnect with some of our dearest friends from yester-year, including two of Kingdom Bound’s head honchos, Wendy Menter (pictured above with Jenny), and Danielle [Pelletier] Rose (not pictured because the one shot I got she’d kill me if I posted. You’re welcome, Danielle). (Big love to Steve, Jacqui, Payton and Amber Lee Grabowski).
My last appearance in the public eye was on the Park Stage just after Fireflight and just before Superchick. (How such pretty ladies got picked to sing for such hard bands I’ll never know; but I was definitely a thorn between two roses [@superchicktrish, Dawn Michele]). I preached on Luke 15 about the 3 ways people get “lost” in life, and how the Lord loves looking for and rescuing hurting people. While it was too crowded to get any sense if anyone benefited from the message, I’ve been getting emails, phone calls, and posts ever since of how the Lord changed peoples’ lives. Without Pastor Samme Palermo believing in me enough to “get on his stage,” I wouldn’t have spoken. Thanks Poppa Samme.
I’m honored to have been asked to contribute to such a rich event in which Jesus was truly lifted up, and I rejoice that He is preached in every possible way with every possible motive. ch: