A brief history – 2005

By 2005 we were playing over eighty gigs a year with lots of travel. We had a really good touring circuit around Australia and the year before we had been to New Zealand four times. I was on staff at my Church now and Kate and I had two kids. Naturally we had to spread out the tours to make room for these other responsibilities. In general we were getting good responses to the concerts wherever we went (with the odd exception keeping us grounded) and had a great working arrangement with the Bible Society. In most cases I would assign blocks of time to the various regions, working about eight months ahead and the Bible Society in those regions would organise the tours. Sounds simple when I say it but there was a lot of work in the background from them and myself to make it all happen. That year we released another album Resurrection. We also recorded a live concert over four days for release on DVD. This was the biggest ‘flashiest’ thing we had ever done.

The whole experience really stepped us up in terms of performance quality. I had been doing a dramatized section of the life of David during our concerts, straight from the text of 2 Samuel 12 and I wanted to capture this on the DVD. Since then we have incorporated other dramatised sections of the Bible in our live performances including Revelation 19-21 and the story of King Asa in 2 Chronicles 14-16. I love the idea of incorporating the Psalms with other parts of scripture, it gives them some context both biblically and theologically and always has a big impact on audiences.

When Jayden married his wife, Caroline, from Wisconsin, she stepped in to organise our trips to the USA. This led us to do a series of very busy tours over there. We hadn’t been back to the USA since 2003. When we left I felt overwhelmed by the size of the place. I had wondered whether there was any way we could ever even make a splash in this country which already had so much in the way of music. Upon our return in February 2006 we discovered a remarkable divine plan at work. When we had been there in 2003 a guy called Chris Muller had bought our CDs. He subsequently went on to get the job of senior buyer for the biggest chain of Christian book-music stores in the USA. We were planning to do a second tour to the Midwest later that year and he asked us to stop by the massive office complex in Grand Rapids, Michigan that his company, Family Christian Stores, shared with Zondervan Publishers.

Later that year we dropped in to visit him and he told us of his plans to promote our music in the hundreds of Family Christian Stores throughout the USA. He did that and we became one of their best selling artists within a few months. You just couldn’t make something like that happen.

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