Today’s spotlight artist is a lady who has been around the music industry since 1997 when her debut album Plumb was released. Her name is Tiffany Arbuckle Lee, but her fans simply know her by her stage name Plumb, which she chose from a song called My Favorite Plum by Suzanne Vega.
She grew up in Atlanta, singing in church and school, and then moved to Nashville one week before her 21st birthday, where she now resides. Plumb worked as a background singer for a number of artists, including Bill Gaither and Amy Grant, and then eventually signed on with Silvertone Records who had success with the band Jars of Clay. When she was urged to write, Plumb went to Matt Bronlewee—an original member of Jars of Clay who happened to be her next-door neighbor.
In 1999, Plumb released a second studio album titled Candycoatedwaterdrops, which won the 2000 Gospel Music Association Dove Award for “Modern Rock Album of the Year”. Her songs were well received and did well on the billboards, but some songs from the album were considered a little too dark, moody and even taboo for mainstream Christian music.
Her music is different, and yes, true to life in all of the ugliness and not so good things, but sometimes that’s what makes it cut to the heart for people. Like anything we do in life, we never know how words, actions or lyrics will help someone. Such as it was with the song Damaged.
Plumb considered leaving the music industry after the album, but a note from a fan a few hours before what she thought to be her final concert changed her mind. The letter was about her song “Damaged” about a girl coping with being molested as a child. The note said “Whatever you do, I just want you to never forget that you have changed someone’s life.”
She signed to another label in 2003, and her music has done well hitting various spots and a few number 1 spots of billboard charts world wide.
I haven’t followed her career for very long, but I’ve noticed as I’ve listened to her earlier music compared to the songs of the past couple of years that her music is more like Psalms. While her earlier music is more of an encouragement because it helps the listener know they’re not alone in their circumstances, her newer songs point to the Lord who is the only One who can help us through our circumstances. She’s growing in her lyrics as well as her faith, and God uses so many different styles to show people that no matter what, they are still loved by Him and all they need to do is seek Him.
After going through a really rough period she released one of my favorite songs, and about the time wrote, “God has turned my once weeping into dance…something I could not imagine this past winter, when I lived in the valley of the shadow,” she continues. “He always loves me. Always provides. Always protects. And is always faithful. It was when I got out of His way that I saw Him work and bring what was dead to life. What are you going through that maybe you need to just get out His way for? He does a better job. Trust me. May God get all the glory for the hope and confidence in Him he has given me to share through it.”
Everyone can identify with this song…
Her album Exhale released in 2015 reminds us of what it’s like to walk in God’s grace with another one of my favorites,
“I tend to write from extremes, be it my own experiences or from experiences of people that I love or met for a moment. Some of my songs have an aspect of darkness to them , and they talk about the heartache that we encounter in this life. I try to craft some of my songs into little pieces of light that reflect the goodness and joy I’ve experiened … both types of songs are pictures of hope set to music.”
Plumb now under her own label, and launched the label with a five-song EP, God Help Me, in July 2017,
And, a full-length album, Beautifully Broken , followed in June 2018.
As I said, her music style is different- not hard, except maybe some of the lyrics, but life is often hard and lyrics to remind us of Who can help ease the hardness is worth listening to.
I hope folks will enjoy today’s spotlight artist, and find a song or two that speaks to you. Have a blessed Sunday all!