If you were to ask Jason Nelson the heart behind his latest album, The Answer, he would likely say something that sounds like home. The multiple Stellar award-winner comes full-circle on this, his fifth album thematically and sonically, but also literally. Recorded live at Greater Bethlehem Temple where he and his twin brother, Jonathan, took the stage at age six and he currently serves as pastor (ten years and counting!).
“When I was around sixteen, seventeen, eighteen,” Nelson reflects with a chuckle, “my father asked me what I wanted to do with my life. I said, ‘I can tell you what I don’t want to do: I don’t want to be a pastor! For my father to see that it has come full circle, that the legacy he handed over to me is still growing and has a lot of potential, he’s really excited about it.”
His father’s excitement echoes throughout Jason’s devoted and growing fan-base. Given that this album is the first since his chart-topping release, Jesus Revealed, this pastor, father, worshipper, leader is clearly in-tune and in-step with his Heavenly Father. CCM got to chat with Jason to learn more about questions he’s asking, the music he’s loving and what he feels is the role of the church in a society ever in-need of answers.
CCM: You have been busy! New project, booming church. Catch us up a little bit. What’s been occupying your time as of late?
Jason: I have a daughter about to graduate high school and a son who’s finishing sixth grade and will be switching schools. So being a good father, husband and pastor is taking up most of my time.
CCM: How do you find creative space when you’re juggling so many different responsibilities?
Jason: My regular life inspires me with regard to creativity. When the kids go to bed, that’s when I’m generally in my more creative space and when I’m not interrupted. It’s about prioritizing when they need your attention.
CCM: The new project has a powerful and intriguing title, The Answer. Did this come from questions you yourself had been asking? Or were there others around you that you observed to be in need of answers?
Jason: The title of the new album came after we wrote a bunch of songs. Every creative person and writer writes according to the season of life they’re in. A major dynamic of the space I’m in at the moment, turned out to be all kinds of questions. From churchgoers, to family, I’m surrounded by questions. Will I ever be healed? Will I ever be delivered? Does God still love me? Why am I so concerned with what others think? Does my worship matter? I didn’t know we were particularly asking questions in the beginning of the recording process. I was trying to figure things out and write from a heart perspective. I’ve learned to recognize the songs that make you feel can have an impact on the people you’re trying to reach. I’m more in tune with the way songs feel and what they’re saying and try to talk about what these songs mean in context.
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