In the Spotlight

Once again we have a spotlight shining on someone who’s music I didn’t really know until a couple of years ago.  I wouldn’t consider myself a huge fan yet of Brandon Heath’s music, but I’m enjoying more of his songs as I learn them.

One of the first I heard was his Give Me Your Eyes, and while I admit it took me a little while before I started liking it more, the lyrics were what really got me listening to more of his songs.

Give me your eyes for just one second
Give me your eyes so I can see,
Everything that I keep missing,
Give your love for humanity.
Give me your arms for the broken-hearted
The ones that are far beyond my reach.
Give me Your heart for the ones forgotten.
Give me Your eyes so I can see.

It’s a message more of us could learn to act on because a lot of times it’s hard to love people who don’t think like, behave like or believe in what we do, until we see them with God’s eyes.

Brandon was born and raised in Nashville, Tennessee,  and began playing guitar and writing songs when he was 14 (trying to impress a girl) 🙂

I got a guitar as a Christmas present. I took a month of lessons to learn the basics so I could write songs for my girlfriend. I think we broke up about two weeks later. I found this thing inside of me that was waiting to get out and I still think it’s begging me for wings.

Brandon became a Christian for real through Young Life, a world wide youth ministry.  Soon his new life in Jesus began influencing his music, songs which were personal, yet relatable to the listeners.

His ‘career’ began as he was working at a Young Life camp in British Columbia, when he made a short album of some of his songs to sell to the kids there. He was trying to raise money to buy a new guitar to replace the one he’d had stolen.  The kids loved the music, and then he began performing at Young Life camps.  He eventually graduated from college, played regularly at local Nashville gigs, and also lead worship at West End Community Church.  Since his break into the big time, Brandon’s been nominated and won numerous awards including GMA Dove Award’s New Artist of the Year in 2008 and three awards in 2009 for his hit, Give Me Your Eyes ( Male Vocalist of the Year,
Song of the Year  and Pop/Contemporary Song of the Year).

About his music, Brandon keeps it real,  “I don’t think people just want rock stars anymore. They want to know that people who are doing music are just like them. That’s what I want! I look up to people who I feel are somewhat attainable and their lives aren’t squeaky clean. It’s a challenge for me to live what I preach. If I say I’m gonna do it, I gotta do it or I’m a fraud.”

It’s because much of his music is simply his story telling, his characters seem real, and everyone can relate to part or all of them. And that’s why I think his album Blue Mountain is my favorite.

While I love the stories and pretty much every song on the album, my favorite by far is the real story of Paul Brown Petty,

He’s just always been one of my heroes,” Brandon says of his Granddad.  “You never heard him complain. He worked in his garden every day.  He was an elder at his church. He sang in the choir.  He fought in the war. I didn’t want it to be obvious from the get-go that it was my granddad, Just a normal old guy – normal but extraordinary.

You can read more about the album, and the stories here.  I hope everyone enjoys searching out their favorite song and posting it here for the rest of us 🙂  Have a blessed Sunday all!