Recording artist and songwriter John Waller, known for such inspiring hit singles as "Crazy Faith" (featured in the hit box office film, War Room), "While I'm Waiting" (featured in 2008's No.1 independent film, Fireproof), "As For Me and My House," "The Blessing," and many more, releases his first new song and music video in two years, "Awakening (aka The Coffee Song)." The song is also the first single from Waller to release on Radiate Music and foreshadows a full-length album from the label slated to release later this year.
"Awakening" was written by Waller and GRAMMY-nominated, two-time Dove Award-winning "Producer of the Year," Ian Eskelin, who also produced the single. The song's music video was filmed in New York City, directed by Nick Sammons and produced by Bill Sammons.
Georgia native John Waller first caught the attention of the Christian music community as frontman for the band, According to John. When the group disbanded, Waller and his wife Josee moved to Colorado where they helped launch Southlink Church. Though he had given up his aspirations as a recording artist, he began writing songs at Southlink that led to a new chapter in his ministry and signing a record deal with Beach Street Records/Provident Music Group.
His major label solo debut, The Blessing, introduced a wider audience to Waller's music, earning a Top 10 "Faces to Watch" nod by Billboard(2007). He followed his debut with While I'm Waiting, which included the poignant title track featured in the Fireproof film. The music video to the title track of his 2011 album, As For Me and My House, has received over 3.8 million views on YouTube to date while the title track of his 2015 release, Crazy Faith, was featured in the US News & World Report-lauded film, War Room. While not in the studio working on new music with Ian Eskelin for his next full-length album or on tour, Waller can be found with his wife and nine children residing in Atlanta.
Q: John, thanks for doing this interview with us. You have recently partnered with Radiate Music for the release of your new single and your forthcoming album. What is it about Radiate Music that you appreciate that made you want to work with them?
Ian Eskelin. To say I love that guy would be a great understatement. Ian helped bring new, fresh life into my songwriting and it was such a joy to work with such a brilliant mind, and yet he is so humble and down to earth. He's accomplished so much in this industry and yet he could care less about the accolades. Those are the kind of people I gravitate towards.
Q: You certainly have a very interestingly titled new single, "Awakening (aka the Coffee Song)." Can you explain for us the title? Why is this also called the Coffee Song?
My wife and I love coffee. Coffee has always been a part of our faith journey, so this is a simple idea of how spending time with Jesus in the morning and coffee go so well together. Coffee helps to physically wake us up but true awakening come from revelations of who Jesus is.
Q: How did the song come about?
Ian said, "you need a coffee song. Let's write one." I said, "You're right. Let's do it." Ha! That simple really.
Q: Your connection with coffee didn't just end with the song, you have a ministry called "Crazy Faith Coffee." What is this ministry about?
5 years ago, we had 5 kids. My wife felt the Lord was speaking to her heart about adoption. I always wanted to adopt. We pursued it despite having 5. We fasted and prayed and I dreamed about a dark headed, 10-year- old girl named Anna. We discovered her 2 days after that dream. We pursued her adoption and discovered she had a 14-year-old brother. We moved forward to adopt them both. One month before completing the adoption we discovered there was also, in a separate orphanage, a 12-year-old sister. 2 days before heading to the Ukraine to seal the deal, we discovered my wife Josee was expecting our 6th biological child, taking us from 5 to 9 in one year. The song "Crazy Faith" was born out of this story, as well as the concept for a coffee brand where we share similar stories of Crazy faith inside bags of coffee. We also hope the coffee helps fund the feeding of these kids along with portions of the proceeds funding other kingdom minded people and organizations. Check us out at crazyfaith.coffee
Q: How can our readers be part of this ministry?
If you drink coffee, you gotta buy it somewhere. When you buy it from us, you're supporting multiple kingdom ministries. We will be featuring a different story each month and a percentage of the proceeds for that month will go to that featured ministry whose story we tell. Go to crazyfaith.coffee
Q: Going back to your music, tell us more about your upcoming album: is there a title yet? When will it be released? Who have you been working with?
The album is called "Awakening" (at least till I change it, which can happen at the 11th hour of a release). I wrote with some amazing writers for this project, including my producer Ian Eskelin, as well as Benji Cowart, Daniel Doss, Matt Armstrong, Barry Weeks, Sammy Ward and Matt Papa. Whew!! That's a lot of names. These are some of my favorite songs I've ever recorded.
Q: What are your hopes for this new single and album?
People need encouragement. I certainly do. My hope for this album is that it would lift heaviness off of people and restore the pure joy of Jesus like a jolt of caffeine from a fresh cup of coffee in the morning!