Barely out of high school, she shared the stage as a background vocalist for Amy Grant, Michael W. Smith, CeCe Winans and Point of Grace. Very few debut artists have the musical gift and background this 23-year-old does. And yet, her way with a lyric and her vocal experience are only a glimpse of an amazing talent and a passionate heart. As a wide-eyed 8-year-old, Kara wrote her first love song to God with all the confidence of childlike faith. But by age 16, like so many teenage girls trying to conform to society's definition of beauty, Kara was caught in an intense struggle between self-discovery and perfection.
Fear and self-doubt amplified the typical teenage angst of "Who am I?" taking a toll on Kara, physically, emotionally and spiritually. Through the patience and loving discipleship of her parents, Kara began to learn her true worth. She discovered by reading Scripture and expressing her feelings to God that worship-responding to the grace and goodness of God-calmed her. Focusing on God relieved her from that internal war. As she became more aware of how God created and deeply loved her, He led her to a place of surrender.
He led her from fear to freedom. Kara's self-titled solo debut on Vertical Music reveals her worshipful response to the joy and freedom that God has lavished upon her since her formative years. Produced by Pete Kipley (MercyMe, PlusOne, Rachael Lampa), Kara is a fusion of danceable pop, electronica and exuberant worship-lyrics that point to God as the creator and sustainer of life, the never failing love of our lives. "Kara's album draws from an assortment of sounds reflecting styles popularized by artists such as Madonna, Janet Jackson, Pink and Dido," says Vertical Music's A&R manager Jeff Quimby, "but the content is filled with an obvious and passionate heart for worship." You pour Your life into me And You give each breath that I breathe And all that I know and believe Gives me every reason to praise You From "Glorify You" by Kara and Margaret Becker From the first single, "Glorify You" (co-written with Margaret Becker), to "Sunshine," a song about the freedom of forgiveness, to the intimate adoration of "We All Bow Down," Kara is evidence enough that when God changes one's focus from self to Himself, worship is as natural and essential as breathing. Although she'd been singing her whole life, and had even recorded an album in 1999 with her brother and sister as a group called Three Strand, Kara wasn't convinced that music was her calling. She had even been considering a mainstream pop offer, before her experience on the Amy Grant Christmas Tour, but God had yet to reveal the chosen path. "One night on the Amy Grant Christmas Tour, I could sense God saying this kind of ministry was what He'd been preparing me for and one day it just all made sense. Every breakthrough I've ever had in my life has come through a time of personal or corporate worship.
I was pursuing a mainstream thing for awhile, but my passion for worship grew as I began to realize the power it had had in my life." For Kara, worship was and is something intensely personal. But she hopes the honesty in her songs, the truth about her own struggles in tandem with the freedom of a worshipful life will impact all who hear it. That is the reason she sings, the reason she moves and has her being. That is what sets her a part from the pop singers of her day. Christian music veteran Margaret Becker agrees.
"Kara is a welcome change in CCM music," she says, "a fresh perspective, a fresh voice." "More than anything else," Kara says, "I hope this record totally encourages people who perhaps have struggled like I have to keep seeking that deeper place with God.' My heart grieves when I hear people say they feel like God isn't listening to them because of what they have done � these songs are my way saying what God has been saying all along, "Come as you are." Return to me, my weary one And come rest in my healing arms From "I Love You" by Kara and Jan Williamson The album's closing song, "I Love You," written for a friend who had abandoned her faith, encapsulates the message from God's heart to His children, Kara says. "It's all about the fact that at the end of the day, no matter what you've done, no matter what you've been through, no matter if you've been overcome by fear or feel horribly guilty, God loves you, and He wants you to return to Him. If you ever realize that He loves you regardless, it's a revolutionary thing." Read more on Last.fm. User-contributed text is available under the Creative Commons By-SA License; additional terms may apply..
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