So Ross, you’re fairly new to the Christian Music scene. Tell us about yourself.
Well I’m an Okie, born and raised. Grew up with music and faith all around me and decided to combine the two. I’ve got my lovely wife Melissa and an adorable son named Ray. They’re beautiful. I’m also a youth pastor at my home church and I love using my music with them. I’ve got a great church family there and I’ve been playing in the worship scene for 10 years. Recently I have felt a much stronger calling to share my gifts with the rest of the world, so here we are. So far so good.
Who are some of your musical influences?
Hmmmm So many artists. As far as bands go I’ve always been a big fan of Tenth Avenue North and they’re sound. If we go way back I’d say Switchfoot. They’re still masters of their craft. As far as worship music goes, Elevation Worship gets my creativity juices flowing. I’m also a big fan of anything Joel Houston writes. His theology is on point and I think theology is lacking in a lot of today’s Christian music.
What do you want fans to take from your music?
Well of course I want them to encounter Jesus when they hear my songs, but even beyond that I want it to be real, which means that not all of my songs are going to be “feel good” songs. I do like to focus on mercy. Grace gets all the attention, and I think we forget about mercy a lot. Also, I want my listeners to encounter Him in a new way. Some of the ideas in my songs are Biblically grounded yet often overlooked. They aren’t hard concepts to understand, but I think that maybe they aren’t often sung about. For example, I have a single coming out soon called “Love Run Wild” and it’s all about how God’s love doesn’t follow the rules and constructs that we have created, and since its not something we’re used to, it appears wild and untamed to us. I hope I was allowed to share that. Lol
How’s the music scene in Tulsa, OK?
It’s great! We have a lot of very talented people here. We’ve always produced good musicians though. Shoutout to Hanson.
What is the best album you’ve listened to lately?
Brandon Lake’s new single “This Is A Move” is phenomenal. We met in Nashville a few months ago and he showed some other stuff he’s working on. Get ready for it, it’s really going to be something and he is such a great guy. As far as albums go, Elevation’s “Paradoxology” album has been on repeat in my car for months.
Your latest song “Liars Beggars & Thieves” hits pretty hard for the “raised in church” Christians that listen to it. Care to talk about that?
Well it’s definitely the most convicting song I’ve ever written, but it’s stuff that we need to be talking about as a church. It’s also a very different song for me because I write mostly worship music. This song actually isn’t even on the upcoming album, but it’s stuff that was heavy on my heart and I felt it needed to be said. I hope it gets ALL Christians thinking about the kind of image the rest of the world has of us. It breaks my heart to see some of the stuff people post on social media in Jesus’ name. Jesus isn’t in those comments. I also have been looking much more closely at the church lately. We are becoming people pleasers instead of God pleasers. Instead of desiring to heal people with the love of Christ, we tend to avoid them or cast them out entirely because it interferes with the way we are trying to look and feel. I mean honestly the church is just going through a modern version of The Good Samaritan story. Anyway, I’ve received a lot of good feedback from folks that don’t attend church because they’ve been burned in the past and it really resonates with them, so I’m hoping this helps mend that wound while waking the church up a bit. The opening line of my song says “We once were broken, and we know that now, but when you’re broken sometimes you don’t see how”. I think this line sums up the entire song… remember you aren’t perfect and you’ve been there before, and you’ll be there again. Now go heal these people while remembering to be patient because they don’t even know they need healing. All of that is in the first line. But listen to the whole song anyway.
If you could have dinner with any band or artist (dead or alive) who would it be?
Oh that’s easy. Rich Mullins. He was such a blessing to the Christian music industry. His songs… ahhhh so good. He had a way with words, and when he sang you listened. He wasn’t the greatest vocalist but you listened because you knew he had something important to say. He didn’t write “filler” lines to finish a song. He was prophetic in many ways. Above all else, he practiced what he preached. I’d take him to Cracker Barrel any day. 9. We haven’t heard a whole lot from you just yet, but there seems to be a lot of buzz and excitement in some pretty important places about what’s next for you. So… what’s next? Well what I can tell you is that I have a radio single coming out very soon. I’ve recently added some fantastic people to my team and we are fixin to hit the ground running. Everything is really happening so fast for me so I’m really just as curious as.
End of Interview
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