A Little Heath Does a Body Good

“In the wilderness that is popular Christian music, weighed down by dreams of secular emulation and candy sweet images of the happy-go-lucky Christian life, there are a few who stand strong in the changing winds of contemporary Christian music culture. Brandon Heath, with his soaring voice and unapologetic faith, stands up among these, embracing the shifting and blurring lines that are beginning to create music that appeals to not only believers, but seekers as well.” – BrandonHeath.net

Jonathan: Where are you from and where did you grow up? What is your background?

Brandon Heath: I grew up in Nashville, Tennessee. People are usually surprised to hear that I was born there. Nashville’s the town you move to when you want to do the music gig. I think I might have it in my blood. Most people I grew up with couldn’t wait to move.

Jonathan: When did you first accept Christ into your life? How old are you right now?

Brandon: I’m 27 now. I didn’t grow up in the church. I went on occasion with my grandparents, but it was kind of a Christmas and Easter thing back then. I was involved in Young Life in high school and they took me to a camp up in Canada called Malibu. That’s where I started my walk with Jesus.

Jonathan: When did you feel God’s calling to get into the Christian music industry? Have you always felt that God gave you musical talent?

Brandon: Honestly, I’ve been a follower of Christ for 10 years now, but it’s only in the past couple of years that I have listened to Christian music. I have always wanted to make music, even when I was a kid, but I always thought it would either be country music, or pop. I feel a specific calling to do Christian music. There are a bunch of believers that do secular music, which I love, but I felt like my faith needed to be a little more up front in my songwriting.

Jonathan: Has God blessed you with any special lady in your life?

Brandon: Nope. I’ve dated here and there, but it’s hard to tie a guy like me, who’s never home, down.

Jonathan: On your latest release, what is your favorite track? Why would you say it’s your favorite?

Brandon: Well, I think that I was most pleased with Don’t Get Comfortable. It was a song that I wrote about moving into a new neighborhood and ultimately into a new chapter in my life. It’s really the first convicting song that I’ve ever written. I wrote it with a new buddy of mine, Phil LaRue. The production on it ended up sounding really fresh an has the urban flair that I was looking for.

Jonathan: Who do you think some of the strongest influences on your music have been in the past?

Brandon: I’ve always been a big Sting fan. Even when he was with the Police, I was diggin his style. I think that U2 would be another influence of mine as well. I love how up front Bono is about his belief in God. They put on a killer show too. One, surprising influence of mine was Garth Brooks. He was the first guy that I really looked up to. His songs have always been crafted well and he is a heck of a good guy.

Jonathan: Do you plan on starting to tour nationally anytime soon?

Brandon: It looks like that will happen in Spring of 2006. I’m looking into booking agents right now, but it’s about time I got my road legs broken in and get out to the small towns of USA.

Jonathan: Talk about Young Life and your involvement with them a little bit. What has it been like?

Brandon: I had Young Life leaders involved in my life as a high school guy. They went out of their way to love me and show me Christ. I think that is what made an initial impact on me in the ministry, but most of my involvement with Young Life has been through a property in British Columbia called Malibu. I served there for 4 summers on staff and loved being in the background of one of the most amazing camps in the world. It wasn’t until 2001 that I started playing music exclusively for Young Life camps. I’ve been encouraged by so many people and I give Young Life a lot of credit for challenging me to do what I am today.

Jonathan: What school did you graduate from and with what degree?

Brandon: I graduated from Middle Tennessee State University. I started out as a Recording Industry Major, but ended up doing this cool, create your own major called, University Studies, Liberal Arts degree. I was doing music in school and on the road quite a bit, so it tool me 6 years, but I got er done.