- Thursday | March 16, 2017
- 7:00 pm
- Augusta Civic Center | 76 Community Dr | Augusta, ME 04330
- (207) 626-2405
CANCELLED DUE TO WEATHER. INFORMATION ABOUT REFUND WILL BE SENT DIRECTLY VIA TICKETMASTER
Hey friends! Jeremy Camp and Hawk Nelson with special guest Dan Bremnes is coming to the August Civic Center in Augusta, ME on March 16th!
Tickets: $15 – $35 | CLICK HERE FOR TICKETS
Jeremy Camp’s seventh recorded studio album Reckless needs a warning sign: NOT FOR THE FAINT OF HEART. For come February 12, when the album releases from BEC Recordings, it just might inspire listeners to surrender everything, even what they never thought they could give up.
This happened to Camp about a year ago when he felt God ask him, “Are you willing to surrender everything?” For him, “everything” was music. Something he has been quite successful at for the past decade, with 32 No. 1 radio hits, a Grammy nomination and five Dove Awards. Even with this success, Camp says God brought him to a place where he could, if the day ever came, surrender music. “Not that it wouldn’t be a challenge,” says Camp, “but I wouldn’t be devastated because this is not my life. Christ is my life.”
It was with this mindset that Camp wrote “Reckless,” the first single on the album. “Reckless” tugs at the listener with its call-to-action lyrics: I’ll lay my life down and give it up / I’ll give it up … I will not be afraid to surrender my way to follow who you are / I want to be reckless.
Camp explains the concept of recklessness through the life of Paul. In Acts 14, Paul returns to Lystra to share the gospel—a city where he had been stoned and left for dead just days before. Sounds crazy that he would return to a place like that. But as Camp explains, it’s more reckless than crazy, and there’s a difference. “[Paul] wasn’t being crazy for crazy’s sake, saying ‘I don’t care what’s going to happen. I just want to go.’ No, when you feel God calling you to do something, you have to be obedient. And that’s the difference. Paul was just obedient. That’s what reckless is.”
Camp co-wrote “Reckless,” along with several other songs on the album, with producer and longtime friend, Andy Dodd. Dodd produced several of Camp’s earlier albums including Stay and I Still Believe. With Dodd back on as producer, Camp says he feels like he is getting back to his roots yet creating a new sound.
“Musically and vocally, it’s more raw,” says Camp, “but in a good way.” Like with “Reckless,” rather than bringing in heavy guitar for the chorus, they cranked up the keys and let the piano do that rock part, something Camp has never done before. And rather than overthinking it musically and trying to “over-perfect” the production, Camp and Dodd focused on the lyrics. “We were over-thinking it in a good way,” says Camp, “going back and forth with each other always asking, ‘What impacts most?’”
“The Way You Love Me,” the second radio release from the album, impacts listeners with its reminder of God’s love and what our reaction should be because of it. One of Camp’s daughters demonstrated this reaction when she asked her father one day, out of the blue, “Is there anything that I can do for you that I’ve never done before that will make you happy?” Camp looked at her and said, “You don’t have to do anything to make me happy. You make me happy.” Camp heard the lesson God was teaching him through that moment. Just like his daughter knew he loved her, so do we know God loves us and that’s why we desire to please him, out of love and not obligation.
“The Way You Love Me” is a declaration of that love for him, as the worshipful and punchy chorus says So I will lift the broken words / Show the world how you love me / How you love me. Camp sites the prophet Jeremiah as the heart behind this song, a prophet who could not hold in his love for the Lord: “If I say, ‘I will not mention him, or speak any more in his name,’ there is in my heart as it were a burning fire shut up in my bones, and I am weary with holding it in, and I cannot” (Jer. 20:9).
Camp provides an example of the tangible way we show God’s love through the song “We Need.” This upbeat anthem encourages acts of social justice, which is something Camp and his family are very familiar with. They support Compassion International and travel to places like Josiah’s House, a home for boys in the Dominican Republic, and New Hope Haiti Mission, a children’s home in Haiti.
But Camp is quick to explain, “There are a lot of people doing social justice things, which is great. But we can’t just say, ‘Here’s some food. Here’s some stuff.’ We have to be able to give the gospel, share the hope and have a real heart for that.” As “We Need” says, Into the lives of forgotten children / Showing the love they were never given.
Camp believes balance is crucial in the realm of social justice and following God’s call. “We need to be reckless,” says Camp, “but let’s spend time with Him so we know where to go.” That’s what the final song on the album, “Without You,” is all about. With a softer yet strong melody, this song, strategically placed last, gives a final instruction to listeners on how to surrender our lives to Christ: I won’t make a move without you right by my side / I will wait for you to lead me to any place where you lead.
The chorus reflects Camp’s main goal for this album. “My heart’s desire is that people will listen to the Lord and his leading,” he says, “and really dive into the fullness of what He’s called them to do, whatever that looks like.”
“Come Alive” also expresses this desire for listeners to experience fullness. Struck by the solemn scene of a New York City street, Camp says, “It was like looking at the living dead… all they’re doing is living for their own desires. I want this world to come alive, to see that yes, you’re dead in your trespasses, but you have been made alive in Christ.”
With powerful strings as a backdrop, the chorus of “Come Alive” builds, dramatically proclaiming You have restored us / You have redeemed us / We have been given new life / You are alive.
Camp will share this message of hope with large crowds as he tours this year. This CCM success would rather play for a crowd of 100 than 50,000 if that would increase the ripple effect. “If I play for 100 people and those 100 people are impacted radically,” says Camp, “that’s so much greater than doing something massive with no impact…. I’m at a place where I’ve just let this go. I put my whole heart, blood, sweat and tears into this and, God, it’s yours.”
As a part of giving everything to God, Camp has also penned his story in the upcoming book I Still Believe (Tyndale). In I Still Believe, he shares, with unflinching candor and emotion, the extraordinary story behind his award-winning lyrics–from his impoverished childhood, rebellious teenage years, and spiritual awakening at Bible College, to the tragic loss of his first wife, Melissa, to cancer and the heart-wrenching spiritual journey that followed–a journey that reignited his faith, inspired some of his most beloved songs, and paved the way for a second chance at love with his second wife, Adrienne.
Some may call Jeremy Camp crazy for not caring more about the success of his career, but others know, he’s not crazy; he’s reckless.
Some musicians who have played together for nearly a decade, released five albums and played countless shows on countless tours, could turn to album six and toss it together in their sleep. They are pros. They’ve been doing this a long time; autopilot would actually produce some pretty good music.
But what if those musicians who had written and played together for years didn’t switch to autopilot and, instead, became more intentional in their music than ever before? Theresult would be a set of songs that sound, lyrically and musically, like each note and word were precisely paired. The result would be Hawk Nelson’s sixth studio album Made, releasing April 2013.
In many ways, Made reflects the journey Hawk Nelson has been on since Crazy Love released in 2011. Since then, the band has found a new label home with Fair Trade Services, longtime guitarist for Hawk Nelson, Jonathan Steingard, has transitioned into the role of frontman after Jason Dunn departed to begin his solo career, and the band of four is now a trio of him, Daniel Biro (bass), and Justin Benner (drums). Many changes. Even more unknowns. But one thing is for certain: Something has clicked, and this album is the proof.
Biro, who founded the band ten years ago, has grown with Hawk Nelson this last decade and believes all of the change has resulted in an honest and God-breathed product. “This time around,” says Biro, “we’re going through all of this emotional change, physical change, and God breathed some new songs that channeled all those feelings and doubts and emotions into these lyrics.”
As much change as Hawk Nelson has undergone in the last year, new lead singer Jonathan Steingard explains the DNA of the band is still the same. “We’re still that high energy band that a church or youth group would book if they want to have a fun youth night,” says Steingard. We want to take what we’ve been and not leave it behind, but grow it a little bit and hopefully be a lot more intentional about what we’re saying.”
This intentionality shines through the two central songs on the album: “Words” and “Made.” Steingard wrote “Words” with Matt Hammitt (Sanctus Real) and Seth Mosley, the producer on the album. The song, and first single, is product of a conversation Steingard had with Hamitt and Mosley. “We were talking about how easy it is to forget how impacting we can be in the lives of the people around us just with our words,” says Steingard. As the lyrics explain, Words can build you up; words can break you down. / Start a fire in your heart or put it out.
“Words,” which features vocals by Bart Millard (MercyMe), is a response to “Made”—a building song, layered with fast-tempo strings, that speaks boldly to the listener during the chorus: You’re beautiful, wonderful, perfectly made. “The idea behind that song,” says Steingard, “is that when something is made instead of just happening, everything about it is on purpose and intentional. If we didn’t just happen, if we were created by
someone who loves us and cares about us and has a purpose for our lives, then when we look in the mirror, we should be satisfied with what we see.”
So “Made” tells us we are on purpose, and “Words” encourages us to live life purposefully.
The lyrical intentionality runs throughout the album but it does not, of course, replace that unique, I-just-can’t-sit-still-right-now, fun, contagious, signature sound of Hawk Nelson. Songs like “Elevator” and fast and loud “Anyone But You” will leave the listener with a strong takeaway message while they dance along and jump up and down, as Hawk Nelson fans do.
Hawk Nelson will also be intentional with the philanthropy aspect of their spring tour for Made. They have partnered with Food for the Hungry to support one, specific city that is in need. Many bands go on tour these days and raise sponsorships for kids through various non-profit organizations, but by focusing on one place, Hawk Nelson will bring sponsorship to a tangible level. “It doesn’t seem as grandiose as ‘We need to get all these kids sponsored,'” says Justin Benner. Their goal is to raise enough sponsorships for one village to be self-sustaining by the end of the tour. “Then,” says Benner, “you could say ‘I contributed to that—that specific thing.'”
Fan involvement is Hawk Nelson’s specialty. Further proof of this is in how they raised funds for Made. It was a Kickstarter project—an online fundraising tool now often used for producing new records. Biro believes the Kickstarter success proves the power of the relationships this band has built with the industry and with fans over the years. And despite the new look of Hawk Nelson, he says, “Real relationships span the test of time, and those relationships have stayed in tact and those people have showed their support.”
No doubt Hawk Nelson has loyal fans. They are known for a rigorous tour schedule, working on albums while on the road and playing in front of people as much as possible. Hawk Nelson does well reaching the younger demographic that can be so difficult to get through to, but now, as their music is maturing, they hope to broaden their reach. With more mature album themes like living purposefully and more challenging lyrics, they surely will.
With the success of Crazy Love, which was nominated for numerous GMA awards, you would think these three are feeling the industry pressure with Made. But the band members are confident in this new phase. “We just all believe in it,” says Benner. Biro, agrees and sees the challenges as the exact preparation the band needed. “When you’re in those valleys, those are the times you grow,” he says. “I’m really proud of the
guys for sticking around because it is a brand new thing. It’s a new identity, and I’m excited about it.”
Steingard has felt peaceful about the transition before the transition even officially happened. In spring 2012, he was in a hotel room in Australia on tour when he played for Biro what is now the upbeat, lead-in track on Made called “What I’m Looking for.” The chorus chants What I’m looking is for is more than a feeling / What I’m looking for is something bigger than me. It’s that belief in something bigger that Steingard clings to. “I don’t feel pressure,” he says, “because from the get-go, this has felt like something God’s been sorting out for a while. It feels like there’s something going on that’s bigger than any of us.” With this type of focus on the bigger picture, anything is possible for the new Hawk Nelson.
Opting against the usual childhood dreams of becoming an astronaut, putting out fires or pitching in the Major Leagues, singer/songwriter DAN BREMNES was convinced that a future as a drummer would complete him. Or would make his life complete, anyway.
As it turns out, even from a young age, Dan’s instincts were right on target. Unlike most childhood hobbies that are cool today, forgotten tomorrow, drumming was something Dan pursued with fervor. Only 10 when began playing at his local church, Dan considered this opportunity a privilege since he was “probably pretty terrible.”
Nevertheless he remained undaunted, and his love of music only grew stronger. To him, nothing was more exciting than stepping onstage and playing life, whether it was accompanying a visiting Sunday morning worship leader or jamming at a club show while on the road with various artists later on.
A couple of years after finding a steady rhythm on the drums, Dan’s repertoire expanded when he started playing the guitar. Soon thereafter, Dan also discovered a passion for songwriting. As the young writer experimented with chords and melodies and fumbled with early attempts at lyrics, full-fledged songs began to emerge.
But as exciting as these developments were, it was still difficult for Dan to make sense of doing music for a living. See, his small hometown of Salmon Arm, British Columbia wasn’t exactly the place to kickstart your music career—especially if you planned to sing about your faith. Unlike the United States, the Christian music scene was virtually non-existent there, so pursuing something in that vein seemed nothing short of impossible.
It was a six-month missions trip in Australia with Youth With a Mission (YWAM) that would help re-shape his perspective: “While I was there, something happened in my life, and God started working on my heart. I started to go a lot deeper in my faith,” Dan shares. “Something sort of clicked in me. I’ve always had these opportunities to lead worship and share about my faith, and I started thinking about making music that was really intentional about reaching people on a spiritual level. I wanted to come right out and speak about God and my relationship with Him.”
With his mission solidified and a million ideas swirling around in his head, Dan devoted himself to fleshing them out. The result of his efforts landed on his critically celebrated independent debut, Your Strength.
Before Your Strength saw the light of day, however, Dan faced a personal crisis he never saw coming. While attending a friend’s wedding out of the country, a pastor called from Dan’s hometown with the worst possible news. His mother had been killed in a car accident the night before. Dan was speechless. “For about a year I was almost completely emotionally paralyzed,” Dan recalls. “My whole world shattered in front of me, and I was completely helpless to fix any of it.”
In the midst of such a devastating season, Dan began to remember the words his Mom had spoken into his life, particularly how she’d encourage him to chase after what God had put on his heart. Knowing there was probably no better way to honor his Mom’s memory than by throwing himself wholeheartedly and deliberately into music, Dan also didn’t want to live with any regrets.
“In my town we go cliff jumping in the summer. I’m always the guy to round up a group of friends to go jump off cliffs. But when I get there and stand on the edge of the cliff, I realize that I like the idea of cliff jumping more than I actually like cliff jumping,” Dan shares. “Faith is similar for me. I like the idea of being brave and jumping out in to the unknown, but when it actually comes to putting faith into action, I think I like the idea of it more than the actual act. But I know that God is always calling us out into the unknown, and He’s faithful to catch us anytime we take a leap.”
That said, leaps of faith are still intimidating, even scary, but for Dan, stepping out and pursuing music led to a tremendous sense of purpose and joy. Like the majority of artists, his journey began humbly—playing local churches for the cost of his gas. But as he shared his songs with anyone who’d listen and continued to hone his songwriting craft, it wasn’t long before people took notice.
Proving quite the adept multi-tasker, Dan invested countless hours in being his own publicist, booking agent and marketer. He called radio stations, booked his own interviews and television appearances, and with a lot of sweat and elbow grease, his efforts began paying off: in addition to sharing the stage with the Christian artists he’d always looked up to and touring extensively in Australia and New Zealand, Dan collected a host of awards, No. 1’s and accolades in Canada, including a finalist position in the John Lennon Songwriting Competition.
As he’s continued touring, recording and writing songs as an independent artist, it’s no surprise that Dan’s passionate vocals and evocative, authentic songs of faith have attracted the attention of Nashville’s Capitol Christian label.
Now, with the forthcoming release of his EP, which includes the dynamic and deeply personal first single, “Beautiful,” Dan, along with his wife and baby boy, are now embarking on another exciting adventure Stateside.
“My wife and I packed up all our stuff, packed up our baby boy, got in the car, drove to the airport and moved to Nashville,” Dan shares. “We are here now and are so excited about this next season to be writing, recording, getting ready for new music and what lies ahead. I couldn’t be happier just to know that I serve such a great God, and that I can trust that He’ll be there every step of the way.”