After a month-long build-up and a last-minute dash by students who had not me the deadline to turn in money for tickets (none turned in their money on Sunday, and last night we had 6 students turn in money for tix), tonight we journeyed over to Erie to see Casting Crowns, Leeland and John Waller in concert. It was a very encouraging evening, and one of the better concerts that I have been to in recent memory. Here are a few of my thoughts on the bands:
John Waller – Aside from the fact that he is from the south, I knew nothing going into tonight’s concert. He turned out to be a pretty solid songwriter and performer (he really only played about 4 songs, since he was the opening act). I liked what I heard, and encourage you to check out his site for more info.
Leeland – I discovered these guys nearly two years ago at the National Youth Worker’s Convention in Charlotte, NC. I quickly grew to admire their talent, and have desired to hear more from them. Well, more I get! They just released a new album Tuesday (two days ago) and even though I got to stream it all through jesusfreakhideout, it was like hearing the new material for the first time. Their hearts and their passion for God really speak out through their performance, and led us in some truly deep worship through music. Pick their stuff up.
Casting Crowns – Long overlooked by myself, save for a few songs, I was moved by their performance tonight. They desire to create more than a concert, and they succeeded. Mark Hall (lead singer) many times gave sermonettes that tied into songs, and they even offered a time of prayer where each band member prayed over the crowd. They also twice invited Waller and Leeland back onto stage to help them lead a couple songs. The band has partnered with Worldvision, and it really encouraged the teens we took tonight to sponsor a child through them. So we did. Fahim from Bangladesh is now a member of out student ministry!
All in all a great concert. If they are coming through your city or one near you, don’t be afraid to grab a few teens (or adults) and head out for a great evening of singing, clapping, worship and depth. There is something for disciples, and something for those who are still searching.