Sunday, June 28, 2009

Family Fun in Sandestin

We're having a blast in Sandestin on family vacation. Here are some pics of our trip so far...

Ella at Peach Park (on the way to Destin)

Sam and me in the condo

Outside Harry T's

Maddie and me

Baby Gracie loves her Uncle Brandon!

I love that they're holding hands!

Baytowne Wharf in Sandestin

Ella and Gracie

Maddie and Ella at Baytowne Wharf

My sweet daughters!

Friday, June 26, 2009

ZOE Project Almost Complete!

Here's a picture of ZOE with Randy Gill out at First Avenue Sound in Franklin. It's been a good recording process and I am looking forward to the mixing process so I can hear everything we've done and start mixing it!

Sheryl and Randy ended up co-writing a song together. It's great too! YAY, Sheryl!!

This is a Chris Lindsey original..."We Believe". I love Chris and really appreciate his gifts. I'm so glad his song is on this project!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

11 Songs MOSTLY Done

Last night we had a great but LONG night in the studio. We did the "re-do" on "Hallelujah, We Will Sing" and recorded most of "Amazed". I absolutely LOVE this song. I've been wanting to put it on a ZOE record for a couple of years. Thanks to D.J. Bulls, we finally got an arrangement that I liked and that works really well for us. Sheryl has a solo at the beginning but for last night I laid down the scratch pass. So, what you'll hear in this first one is a faint scratch vocal solo and then the group. The second video clip is after we added the trio on top of the group vocals. Seriously, I cannot express how much I love this song. It's probably my new favorite. I have always loved the lyric and I love the soothing nature of the melody. It's one of those songs that just takes me there in heart.

beginning with scratch vocals

with added trio vocals....

I was holding up the phone to let DJ hear how his arrangement turned out. He really did a great job! Thanks, DJ!

Tonight we will record "Breath of Grace" and a song that Sheryl and Randy co-wrote. :)

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Amazing Day!

Today has been one of the best days I have had in a long time. This morning, Paul Young and his boys stopped by on the way to the beach (from Michigan). Paul and Jill moved away several years ago and we still haven't forgiven them. We shared most of our young married life with them...we had kids together, lived a street a part, went to church together, vacationed together, got tattoos together (shhh!) and laughed and cried together. We miss them so much.

Paul and me

Mack, James, Ella, Maddie, Sam and Champ. Maddie and Mack were inseparable as youngsters.

Lauren came over this afternoon to enjoy pool time. Sam was so glad his "girl friend" was here.

Ella...the diver


It was about 1000 degrees today. I was so thankful for the cool water!

I have always loved hydrangeas. FINALLY, ours are killer this year!

More back yard beauty

The evening ended with a cook out...awesome kabobs and corn on the cob. Basically, a perfect day. Thank you, God!

Friday, June 19, 2009

MPI Fusion Gala

Check out Sheryl's pics from the Fusion Gala this week...

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Every Son and Every Daughter

Tonight we added the ZOE kids to "A New Hallelujah". For maybe all of our kids it was their first time to record. With some stacking and some tweaking...they will sound PERFECT! So sweet!

Speaking of kids...Maddie wrote a little piece on angels while she was at my
mom's house last night. I asked her if I could share it with you and she eagerly
agreed. :)

Who Are the Angels?

Angels are people that work with God. Angels are people you
cannot see. But, angels are nice. Some angels are fancy. Some angels are cool.
Some angels are cute and some angels are normal.

The end.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

10 Songs Done

Well...we're now 10 songs into our recording project and sufficiently exhausted. Last night was a bit rough. But, we recovered tonight and are back on track! We also celebrated Peter and Lindsey's baby...only a few weeks from being born. I like to call him "Foncho" Wilson. :)

"I Will Rise"

"Hallelujah, We Will Sing"

Monday, June 15, 2009

8 Songs Down

We had a good night in the studio again tonight. We got two more songs MOSTLY done. Later this week we are adding all the ZOE kids to one of the songs we've done. We're probably insane for even considering it, but it will be fun!

Here are a couple of samples...

Jesus Messiah

All Because of Jesus

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Sam's Pirate Birthday

Today was Sam's birthday party. He is now a big 4 year old! He had a pirate party and it was a total blast!! Here are some pics from the party. Happy Birthday, Sam!!
Sam, the birthday pirate!


Beware of Pirates!!

Meet the new addition to our back yard. Thank you Walmart.

Thanks to Amy Westerman for saving lots of her pirate stuff from Luke's birthday!

LOVED Sam's birthday cake! Sheryl got the base cake from Publix and then added the pirate ship

Even Nonnie got into the action!

Sam and Ben Thompson

Kevin and Baby Gracie

Birthday boy and Daddy

Michael Batson, Ben Thompson and Sam

Baby Gracie even enjoyed the party

Michael Batson and Sam...arrrrrrggh

Happy Birthday, Sam! We love you and are so thankful for you!

Friday, June 12, 2009

Inside Out

We've gotten 6 songs MOSTLY completed on the new ZOE record. Tonight Jason McArthur was back with us (seen being his goofy self in the second video down there). It was old home night. Loved it! I tweaked my back a month or so ago and have gotten to a place of incredible pain this week. Tonight was almost unbearable...but having Jason there made me laugh and helped me not think about it as much. Jason and I go back to ACU days. Waaaay before he was a big-wig Vice President of A&R for a record label. I have stories. But, in the interest of friendship and time, I'll save those. :)

Here's a little sample of the latest...

Michael W. Smith's "A New Hallelujah"

"From the Inside Out" (the title cut from this CD)

Thursday, June 11, 2009

CMA Fest with Reba / ZOE Recording

Today was the big CMA Fest opening. The booth looked great! Reba (who is new to Big Machine Records this year) came and signed autographs for the first time in 12 years. She had a huge number of fans show up. She was very nice and personable. Thanks again to Justin McIntosh for allowing me to partner with him on designing the booth.

Reba McIntire

She's seriously like Benjamin Button...she seems to just get younger!

In other news, ZOE began recording this week. We've been doing this now for 12 years. Sheesh! It's so fun being together again and we just seem to all fit together like a hand in a glove. We've gotten 4 songs recorded so far...

Kevin Penna, Peter Wilson and me

Amy Westerman and Karin Hensley

Here's a little taste of "No Other Name". This was our first hearing of what we'd's very raw and still has some parts missing, but is sounding good so far! David England completely cracked me up in this video clip.

Here's a little sample of a song called "Speak O Lord".

CMA Fest

Today was the big load-in for CMA Fest downtown. Justin McIntosh and I partnered together on creating the Big Machine Records booth. It will be a big year for Big Machine. Last year Taylor Swift was the big news, but since then, Reba has also signed with them. She will be signing tomorrow for the first time in 12 years. I'm looking forward to meeting her!

Here are some pics of the move-in process today. I'll post pics of the final product later this week. Thanks again to Justin and all the folks at Big Machine. Thanks also to Jacob and Chris and the Gary Musick crew who did a great job loading in today.

Justin, me, and...well...Reba. Sort of.

The Gary Musick crew at load-in. These guys are so great!

Big Machine crew

We also began in the studio tonight with ZOE. What a crazy week. Tonight went well but I was exhausted at the end. ZOE began recording together in 1997. It's been such a blessing to work with my ZOE friends for so long. I love those guys!
More on all of the above to come later this week...