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Chapel singer craves new Christian sound

Andrew Peterson loves stories. He began performing music and crafting his songs when he was 19 by using stories from his own life and the people around him.

Peterson said what is most important about performing music is the people he gets to meet. “I don’t love music as much as I love connecting with people through music,” said Peterson.

The inspiration for his music came from the musician Rich Mullins. His music immediately captured Peterson’s attention because of its “brokenness” and the imperfections. Through Rich Mullins’ music Peterson said he could feel how broken he was.

Peterson said getting paid to think about his life is one of the greatest blessings that has come as a result of his music. He said it forces him to acknowledge and face his own brokenness.

When he gets bigger than himself, Peterson said that his family grounds him and reminds him that he’s just a man, “trying to figure stuff out.”

“My family is like the garden that God has given to me to tend to,” Peterson said when describing his family.

Christian music can often get cliché and cheesy, but Peterson said, “I feel like we give too much credit to the cheese,” Peterson said.

Peterson said there is a fear of his music becoming “cheesy.” He wants his music to sound different.

Peterson believes in the beautiful history of Christian art, paintings, music and the like. He reminds us that some of the Christian music we dislike is only a “small slice” of the whole of the beauty that Christianity holds.

He said he wants his music to be different from the norm, so that he can continue to connect to people.

The students at JBU had a chance to experience his music at chapel. Mandy Meyer, sophomore, said, “His music is more real and personable.”

“He still exalts God, but gets down to the human level,” said Meyer.

She enjoyed his style and enjoyed how personable and honest he was.

Kileab Ammons, sophomore, said he particularly enjoyed his music because of his talented writing abilities. Ammons said he uses that gift from God to write about reality and where he is in life.

“He meets people where they’re at,” said Ammons, “I think one of the big things he does really well is take a step back, maybe in life he’s in a really bad situation but when he writes he can step back and go deeper.”