It was the year 2000 when The Rock launched in Anaheim, California with a vision and passion to reach and disciple Orange County for Jesus. What started in one small room is now a church with many congregations and languages and a discipleship program that reaches literally all around the world.
From the start of The Rock, the passion and dedication to worship God and invite others to share in the journey has been key. Many singers, musicians, writers, artists, technicians, and the like gather weekly with a concerted heart to bring something beautiful to God. This 4th full album release from The Rock Worship entitled "Only By Your Grace" is a collection of all original songs from the team under the leadership of worship pastor, David Dirmann.
May these songs go out and bring hope, life and healing to every listener. May the words sung fill countless homes and cars, parks and jogging trails. From houses of worship to hospital rooms, mountains high to valleys low, may the sweet music of hope and faith remain alive, bringing every heart into union with God.
Hallels: Thanks so much for doing this interview with us. For starters, tell us more about the Rock Church.
The Rock is a Foursquare church in Anaheim, CA. We started in 2000 with just a handful of people, and now have services on 14 campuses in 4 languages, with thousands of people attending each weekend.
Hallels: Rock Worship, I believe, is the church's worship team. Who are the primary leaders and what are your respective roles?
As you can imagine, it's hard to not rattle off the dozens of names of leaders who have key roles in our worship ministry at The Rock, without whom none of this would be possible. But the core team of The Rock Worship is David & Tiffany Dirmann who lead our worship ministries, and really pioneered The Rock Worship from the start of the church; Zach Patterson, who leads worship and works with a number of operational elements of The Rock Worship; Eric Diaz, who is one of our Spanish worship leaders and helps head up our in-house recording projects; and Mearah Allmond, who leads worship and helps oversee our youth worship ministries.
Hallels: With so many worship teams out there releasing worship music, what makes your music standout?
One of the things we love and appreciate about our team is the variety of flavors in our songwriting (both musically and lyrically). Of course this translates into our recordings - and while the songs are worship... genuine people just loving God ... the feel of the music will range from a nice groove, to rock, and then to something a little more subtle/instrumental/lingering kind of feel. As many people as there are out there, everyone likes something different. We hope that people can find something they enjoy in the music, and that they can worship to whether hitting the jogging trail, driving down the road, or sitting at home studying.
Hallels: "Only By Your Grace" was recorded live, tell us about the recording. When and where was it recorded?
Every year we come together for our annual conference called "Rock Conference." This is already a great time of worship and seeking God as a family, but this year we also had the great opportunity to record "Only By Your Grace" LIVE right there at the conference. With our worship team and production teams there, 100+ voices in the choir, and thousands of people from our church there to worship over those couple of nights, it was a great time. And this album is about capturing that worship of our church... those moments... and to be able to put that together on one album.
Hallels: How did you end up working with the lovely people at Dream Records?
Dave and Gina Hanley have been friends for years, and we have been talking for some time. This year as we approached another recording project, Dave and Gina approached us about partnering with them in the release. We really felt that this was a God-connection, and are excited to partner with them. It's been a great experience for us.
Hallels: In my review I raved about the album because many of the songs I believe could be use to serve churches in their worship. I am sure you have written many songs for this record, what were some of the criterion you used to narrow down your choice of songs to these 11?
You're right, the narrowing process can be a tough one. Some of the "normal" things that we look for are sing-ability, lyrics that tell a story with or without the music, songs that are easy for anyone to connect with... but in the end, we always come back and pray and ask the Lord what songs He would like on the album. We know the songs already, so putting the songs on an album isn't for the songwriters, but for the congregation at our church, and for anyone else that it reaches. We feel the Lord has hand-picked these songs to be a blessings to many, and we're excited to partner with Him.
Hallels: With the theme of "grace" being very prominently communicated throughout the album, how would you define grace?
I think we would define grace as "all the stuff that God gives and does for us, even when we don't deserve it." You work a job, and they "owe" you your wages... But who owes you the right and privilege to walk boldly into God's presence? Grace is God looking past our un-deserving ways and blessing us anyway. And like the title song "Only By Your Grace" says, His grace to us comes in so many ways: salvation through Jesus' blood, mercy from a loving Father every day, the ability and access to come to His throne and presence fearlessly, victorious, and so much more.
Hallels: For our readers who would like to find out more about you or your new record, where can they go?
People can find out more at www.therockworship.com where we not only have the album, but also free chord charts for this album, and some other albums. We're also on social media @therockworship, if they'd like to follow us. And of course they can visit us in Anaheim, we'd love to meet them and answer any questions they have.
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