Oct 14, 2008

Hall brings 'Marvelous Light' to CFAW

by Kerah Kemmerer

The Schilling Center housed a packed crowd Saturday night with a concert by Christian artist Charlie Hall and guest musician Nic Carver.

The event welcomed College for a Weekend (CFAW) visitors as well as current students and Brentwood church members for an evening filled with worshipful, rock-infused music.

“Glad you guys came out tonight,” Hall said as he addressed the crowd. “It just makes concerts better when people are here, you know what I am saying?”

The set began with songs that invited listeners to “Come just as you are,” and ended on a similarly edifying note with “You are free, you are free, yes, the Son has set you free.

Hall stressed the mercy and grace of Christ between songs, speaking about how Christ “sees into us and loves us” even though it is hard to comprehend and receive. God is there for the “worst of the worst.”

“I thought the songs were great,” visiting weekender Gabby Poissen said. “It just made you want to lift up your hands. Several hundred people were present and the response seemed positive.

“It was a lot of fun,” junior Ben Vestal said. “It was great worshiping with everybody. I love the way he leads.”

Hall, a Christian music artist from Oklahoma City, has been performing around the States and overseas since 1991. Hall is the author of Liberty favorite ‘Marvelous Light.’

His current band includes Kendall Combes, Brian Bergman, Dustin Ragland and Quint Anderson, who enjoy goofing off and having fun while performing together.

Hall played in bands all throughout high school but after becoming saved at 17, he began to think and sing more about God. He said he began to feel a calling in his life.

“When I became a Christian, I felt immediately like I was supposed to be a pastor,” Hall said. “At the time I was in a Baptist church so what that meant to me was a suit and tie.”

Eventually he realized that he was supposed to be a pastor through music and did not need a title to spread the hope of Christ.
The “Bright Sadness” is Hall’s latest album, and it’s meant to inspire broken humanity to continue to follow Jesus in their brokenness,” he said. “When you get to those places in your life where you crash and you are broken. A lot of people feel more separated from God in those times. Even in your sadness, Christ is bright — is life. That may be the time when he is the closest to you.”

One of Hall’s goals in this ministry is to see people get respite from things that hold them down. He said he desires to see people be freed of things that have been troubling them for a long time.

“In this season of music, right now, I am really trying to grab people that don’t feel like they fit inside of church or Christianity,” Hall said. “The artist or the cynic, and just people who generally feel really messy.”

Although his ministry takes him out on the road 10 days a month, Hall still makes his family a priority. Father to an 8-year-old boy, a 7-year-old girl and a baby on the way, Hall said he is a very present parent and does his best to emulate his father, God.
Hall’s artistic and spiritual role model is the late singer, Rich Mullins.

“I loved his lyrics and the way he crafted things, and the way he lived his life,” Hall said. “He was special.”

One of the greatest challenges for Hall as part of the mainstream Christian music industry has been to identify himself.
“I learned (early on) how to be myself musically and personally, and learning not to live under comparisons,” Hall said.

Often seen stroking his goatee throughout his shows, Hall can explain why he keeps it as his signature look.

“I shaved my head in 1999,” Hall said. “I needed something to wash and comb, and it became a part of my look. It is also a great conversation starter.”

Hall has performed at Liberty once before several years ago as part of the Passion movement — a group of singers and speakers that reaches out to college students with spiritual awakening gatherings.

Performing artist Nic Carver is a Liberty alum and has lead worship at Brentwood Church for the past eight years. He opened the night with a 45-minute set of worship songs, encouraging the crowd to sing along. Carver’s music can be found on myspace.com/niccarver.



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