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Parents beware. Taking your children to Christian concerts just might change the course of their lives forever. We’re not just talking spiritually, here—which is a wonderful thing (yes, mom’s and dad’s, please continue to encourage your kids to go to concerts!)—we’re just saying that there’s also the very real possibility that the money you’ve been saving for their college tuition might become repurposed for a degree in the creative arts.

Like Hollyn receiving divine inspiration from witnessing TobyMac live on stage, Hannah Kerr doesn’t shy away from telling you that her first live show was experiencing Casting Crowns in concert. Already growing up in a musical family, it’s not too much of a stretch that Kerr has now ended up sharing the stage with Crowns and some of the best that Christian music has to offer today, but don’t tell her that. The humble-Hannah will emphatically state that she is just simply answering a call.

Not seeking any spotlights, the Source of the call is what is poured into every lyric written and every note that is sung by Kerr. The lead single from her debut album Overflow (Black River Christianbuy) might as well be a “radiating” beacon for her life in general, No matter what comes my way / I’ll live my life, Radiate Your light / Now and always, I’ll let my lips be only for Your name / No darkness gonna stand in my way, If my way is Your way then You’ll make me / Radiate. From her Belmont University dorm room, we attempt to shine a little light on Hannah for the purpose of this interview—but we already know what she is going to do with it, so Lord, may Your light shine big and bright.

CCM Magazine: When you first began singing, you weren’t setting out to plan a career in music, but you also moved from the Buffalo area to Nashville as a young teen—how much of your current track is a product of your environment, if any at all?
Hannah Kerr:
I think it was moving to Nashville and also maturing into who God had me to be. When we lived in Buffalo, there’s really not a “music scene.” I really just thought I would go to college and be a teacher—which I think would have still been amazing—but when we moved to Nashville, it just seemed like God kept opening doors for me to do music. At first I was resistant to it just because that’s not what I had planned. I’m, by nature, an introvert, so I was like, “I don’t know if I really want to be in the spotlight?”

What I realized is that it doesn’t really mean you’re in the spotlight. It just means that God can use you in a unique way. I do have my parents to thank for taking a step of faith and moving my whole family from Buffalo, New York—700 miles away—to Nashville, Tennessee. It really has made all the difference for me in my life.

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About The Author

Kevin Sparkman
Managing Editor

After both on-stage and front-office experience in the Christian recording industry, (including co-founding Exit 3 Entertainment, Inc. and General Manager of hip-hop label Beatmart Recordings), Sparkman returned to Salem in 2014 from a Dir. of Communications position in the United Methodist Church. He became the Managing Editor of CCM Magazine in January 2015.

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