Your Gateway to Music and More from a Christian Perspective
Slow down as you approach the gate, and have your change ready....
"I think a lot of times,
when the Lord cleans us up on the outside, and especially in Christian
cultures, we really forget how much grace we needed to be called a child
of God," said Heather Powers, whose passionate vocals ooze jazz with a
lilt of pop.
I cried awhile for that fretting little girlThe last thing a child needs--or anyone needs--to hear is some old saint saying, 'Just give them all to Jesus dear and everything will be fine'. You need people like Heather Powers who have experienced heartache, have come out victorious on the other side and whose heart is laid bare before you.
Powers said, "Concerning the rape, a lot of things weren't as readily discussed as they are now. I don't think we knew how to talk our way through it. I just shoved a lot of it down. It created a lot of problems later on. To have anything related to sex at such an early age it shapes who you are physically and emotionally. We didn't know what we needed to get through. My mom and dad did everything that they could. After the assault, my sister and I slept at the side of their bed for six months. We wouldn't even go into our own rooms. I think now there is a little more openness to talk about those things."
With a blizzard raging outside the airplane, Powers began checking cell phone messages during her six hour wait on the tarmac. She came across a message from Tom Wiel, the musical director for the original Broadway play Rent. "I didn't know who he was. He said, 'I got hold of your CD and I would really like to talk to you. We are looking to cast voices for some of the (non-singing) characters for the upcoming movie Rent. I love your voice and would love to have you come and audition,'" said Powers.
Powers struggled with whether or not contributing to the vocal tracks for a movie with this type of storyline was a good idea. She says, "It really isn't so far from my own story in a lot of ways. A lot of the drug scene and searching for love in all the wrong places, I could identify with so much."
She talks about that struggle to discern God's will, "I really had to pray about it. I knew the theme of the movie and because it was such a random thing I knew I needed to speak to the Lord about it. After a lot of prayer and seeking counsel on it I felt it was something that I needed to be a part of."
One of the most diverse artists on the music scene today you are equally likely to spot Heather in the role of worship leader at her church as you are to catch her act in a Jazz or dinner club. "I do a lot of music with non Christians and those relationships are ones that I cherish because I get to share God's grace with them," she said. Then giggling a response to my question about the Jazz lounge feel to some of her songs she said, "I cut my teeth (on it) growing up. My dad was a big Jazz fan. Part of my training in college was in jazz as well."
The CD Lay Them Down bears the fingerprints of two of the industry's finest with Marvin McFadden (Tower of Power, Huey Lewis And The News) and Johnny Colla contributing to the heavy horns impressions on this album. Colla is better known for his work on guitar and sax with Huey Lewis And The News.
"I like what Norah Jones did for artists that want to have a different expression or arena. Luckily I have a label that allowed me to be who I am (Thousand Mile Music). It (the CD) has been received well and I think there is a little more desire to have at least more intelligent music (rather than cookie cutter). You need to be relevant to the world. I think a lot of Christian music sounds Christian and part of my platform (stems from) when I walked away from the Lord. A lot of the places where I perform music aren't necessarily Christian. My listeners aren't always Christian."
Although she is thirty something (they will have to torture me for your age Heather!) you get the sense from her easy laughter and the many giggles that pepper our conversation Powers is experiencing the best years of her life. She is enjoying her marriage of four years to husband Josh. She cherishes the time with twelve year old daughter Carly and son Taylor, fifteen.
By Joe Montague, exclusive rights reserved
Joe Montague is an internationally
published journalist / photographer. His ministry is dedicated to the memory
of his late son Kent David Montague who went to heaven at the age of 18.
All copyright and distribution rights remain the property of Joe Montague.