From the outside, it may look like Jason Gray has the perfect life. Now in his 10th year as a commercial Christian recording artist with a string of successful collaborations with some of the biggest names in Christian music, number one hit radio songs, touring with the likes of Natalie Grant, Lauren Daigle, and many more, it’d be easy for the casual onlooker to assume that Jason has it all together. But it doesn’t take more than a minute with him to realize that life has been anything but rosy for Jason, despite the popularity of his music and all the commercial success he has gained.
In this episode of The Song Revolution Podcast, John Chisum gets quickly to the deeper side of Jason Gray. In their thoughtful and transparent discussion, Jason shares candidly about how his broken, abusive home growing up, his speech impediment, his own divorce, and one of the darkest moments in his life in which he could have ended it all has influenced the transparency and depth of his writing.
Jason performed three songs during this episode, Death Without a Funeral, With Every Act of Love, and Without Running Away… each a powerfully crafted and emotionally impacting song that reveals the deep well of his heart and the masterful level of wordsmithing and tune crafting Jason has come to be known for in his ministry.
Among the many awesome moments of this discussion, Jason talks about:
- How the “gift” of his speech impediment has shaped his songs
- How he creates “points of entry” for his listeners to go deeper in the Gospel
- Why our brokenness is the very place God meets us and how he captures those places in his songwriting
- The balance between too much/too little transparency in songwriting and how his mentor, Walter Wangerin, taught him how to “give” to his audience instead of “taking” from them through over-sharing
- How to redeem your pain properly and how God used him to pray for couples in distress despite his own divorce and pain
- Three song categories and how to write for each, including the kind that are “unhewn stones” not to be touched by craft and made as a simple offering to God
- Insightful thoughts on his own song processes and why he chooses to be “invisible” inside his songs
- How “taking tools off the table” leads to creativity beyond our normal capacities
- How writers such as Frederick Buechner and N.T. Wright have influenced his lyrics
- How God spoke to him through an agnostic folk singer named Paul Simon and how God is able to make himself heard with or without our permission
- What the future may be for his songwriting and ministry
Anyone cynical about contemporary Christian music has yet to discover Jason Gray. This podcast will stir your creativity, challenge your preconceived notions about who God can or cannot use, and will dare you to face your own brokenness and need for Jesus, whether you write songs or just love listening to them.
You can connect with Jason Gray at jasongraymusic.com and follow him on FaceBook, Twitter, and Instagram.