A few weeks ago, my friend Anthony told me that he felt that God wanted him to go to Atlanta, GA and record at Scotty Wilbanks' studio (http://www.myspace.com/therockporium). He asked his friend Kevin (http://www.kevinmcmillan.me/) and I if we would like to join him in Atlanta to sing/play on some of the songs. After a lot of prayer and talking about it with Jill, I told Anthony that I would be able to join him in Atlanta. We calculated everything to see how much money would be needed to make the trip and started praying. On 1/17, Anthony had a concert at his home church in New Mat to raise some money for this trip. Kevin and I were able to accompany him at the concert. The place was packed and was an amazing time of worship and praise as well as overwhelming support from friends and family that came from all over. The concert lasted for about an hour and Anthony was able to share his heart, the plans for the recording project, and his heartfelt thanks to those that attended the concert. After all was said and done, the exact amount of money that he needed for this trip was donated. It was awesome to be there when the final count was made and the trip was one step closer.
We packed up and left Williamstown, WV at 7:30 am on Wednesday (1/20/10). Kevin has a Garmin and we decided to use/trust it to get us to the studio. About 5 miles from the Tennessee/North Carolina near Hartford, TN, there was a rock slide that caused us to take a 70 mile detour and we arrived 90 minutes later than expected.
Recording began at 10am on Thursday and our schedule so far has been: Thursday - 10am - 12:30am (14.5 hours), Friday - 10am - 2:30am (16.5 hours), Saturday - 11am - 4:30am (17.5 hours) and so far today, Sunday - 10am - 10:38pm (12.5 hours) and it seems that it's gonna be another late night. Andy Bowen (engineer/producer) estimated that it would take 65 hours to complete the project. On our way down here, we completely underestimated how long it would take to record these songs. The original plan was to record 5 songs in four days and that definitely did not happen. We will return with 3 fully produced songs (I Believe, Cover Me, and How Long) and 1 acoustic/natural song (I Love You).
This has been a great experience for me because I have even more clarity on God's calling on my life. While I love being in the studio with my friends and recording music that has the potential to change the world, it's not for me. That's not to say that I will never go to the studio to record more, but I am not called to this right now as a profession. I had this idea that being a full time musician and recording artist would be the life. Honestly, it's simply exhausting. I don't know that every studio session is as exhausting as this one, but I am wore out! When we arrived, After Edmund was crashed in the studio because they were up until 4am recording some of their new stuff (keep in mind we showed up around 9:45am). When we arrived, Scotty woke them up and they were out the door with about 5 or 6 hours of sleep.
After experiencing everything this week, I think God wants me at home with my wife and kids, leading worship at church, and working to provide for my family. If an opportunity comes up that Jill and I think God wants me to participate in, I'll go for it, but I think simplicity is the key right now. I'm going to do my best with loving God, loving my wife, raising my kids, and serving God however I can.