NASHVILLE, TN – Those who know Mark Lowry best will attest that the comedic genius is a rather complex individual. Long-time friend and producer Kevin Williams recently stated, “Mark is funny, serious, simple, complex, in the moment and in the future, all at the same time.” Mark would attribute this complexity to his ADHD diagnosis, but those who know him well simply attest that Mark just loves life and all the complexities that come with living life to the fullest and making each day count.
This desire can be heard throughout the songs included on Mark’s latest recording, How We Love. The recording marks the first release for the singer, songwriter, storyteller, author and humorist in two years and is filled with songs which he hopes will connect with audience of all ages “whether they are in diapers or depends, I believe there is something included for everyone,” Mark says with a big chuckle.
The desire to return to the recording studio was spawned from a retreat the Mary Did You Know lyricist hosted at his home with a number of songwriters and special friends. “I host this every year, and there were a lot of people there, just sharing,” Mark states. “Then Cynthia Clawson sat down at the piano and started singing this incredible lyric that was written by Beth Nielsen Chapman. As Cynthia sang, ‘Life has taught me this, everyday is new and if anything is true, all that matters when we’re thru is how we love.’ Honestly, I was moved to tears. I remember the air leaving the room and I got that feeling I get when I know I am hearing a great song. So I decided right then that it was time to go back into the studio. I had my first song. A great recording always starts with a great song, and this is a great song!”
Another great song included on the recording came from another prolific songwriter and friend, entitled Come As You Are. “Reba (Rambo McGuire) sent me a new song she had written with Chip Davis and Marcia Henry, and I just loved it. It’s like a new version of the classic ‘Just As I Am’. It simply says ‘whosoever will, can drink until we’re filled, let down your guard, come as you are.’ I love that message. Jesus accepts us just as we are.”
A personal favorite Mark says audiences seem to connect with instantaneously is a tune entitled Old People. Co-written by Jimmy Yeary and wife, Sonya Isaacs Yeary, as well as Ben Hayslip, Old People was one Mark knew he had to record. “You know, music is like food. Everyone has different tastes, but I just knew this one would be one everyone would love. I used to hear long-time Cathedrals’ bass singer George Younce say all the time, ‘I love old people,’ and everyone just laughed. Now that I am getting older, I find that I really do love old people. When I first heard this song, I was over at Jimmy and Sonya’s house having dinner, and of course, they have written so many great songs for folks like Rascal Flatts and Martina McBride, and when I asked them if I could record this song they said, ‘Sure, if Carrie Underwood doesn’t want it.’ So I’m glad Carrie passed so I could record it. I guess you could say I stole it from her,” Mark laughs.
In addition to the many songwriter friends who contributed to the recording, How We Love was produced by Kevin Williams, long-time band member for the Gaither Vocal Band, as well as Gaither Vocal Band pianist, Matthew Holt, who produced the a cappella arrangement of the classic hymn, When I Survey The Wondrous Cross, which features touring mates, The Martins. The recording also includes the vocal talents of long-time friends The Sisters (Amber Balltzglier, Heather Ruppe Bennett and Kim Ruppe Sheffield), as well as multi-Grammy award winning bluegrass group, Dailey & Vincent, who are featured on the Loretta Lynn-penned song, Everybody Wants To Go To Heaven.
From the upbeat remake of the Pharrell Williams’ Happy, to the moving I Thirst, written years ago by Mark’s mother, Bev Lowry, How We Love captures the funny yet serious, simple yet complex, traditional yet creative essence of a man who has dedicated more than three decades of his life to making people laugh, cry and think. “When you decide to produce a recording, you have to look for songs that have meat on the bones,” Mark shares. “You have about three minutes to tell a story, so it’s important that each song says something important. Let’s face it, I’m too lazy to write songs so I have to rely upon my friends to find me good songs. I want to sing songs that make people smile, yet also make them really think, and I am very pleased with the end result How We Love.”
In support of How We Love, Mark will be featured in select dates throughout the summer and fall with touring partners, The Martins and talented pianist, Stan Whitmire, including an eight-city West Coast tour during the month of June. Complete information regarding all eight West Coast Tour dates is available online at www.imcconcerts.com. Additional information regarding Mark Lowry is available at www.marklowry.com.