Corey Voss has recently released his first full length album Songs of Heaven and Earth via Integrity Music. The album, Voss' full-length debut, explores the transformative power of praise, celebrating the Creator with lyrical imagery drawn from scripture and inspired by His creation.
Songs Of Heaven & Earth follows the critically acclaimed Songs of Heaven & Earth digital EP from Voss, the writer behind Selah's radio hit "I Got Saved." Voss includes "I Got Saved" and another favorite, "Praise The King," on Songs Of Heaven & Earth while his voice also showcases the work of other noteworthy writers and collaborators. This includes the church-ready, Dove Award nominated "God Who Moves The Mountains" from Dustin Smith, Richie Fike and David Leonard (All Sons & Daughters) and "As It Is In Heaven" penned by Voss' labelmates Alisa Turner and Michael Farren who guest on the song.
In addition, Dove Award winning writers Krissy Nordhoff and Jennie Lee Riddle, country artist Crystal Yates, newcomer Rhyan Shirley and Voss' producer, Kyle Lee (Leeland, Bryan & Katie Torwalt) co-author songs.
Q: Corey, thanks for doing this interview with us. Your press release says that both Scripture and nature were your major inspirations behind your songs. Let's start with Scripture: why is the Bible important in crafting your songs? Can you give us an example from one of your songs where Scripture plays a major role?
A: Yes! I have always had a conviction for making sure every worship song I write can be backed up by scripture or written from a particular part of scripture. As a worship songwriter, I believe having right theology and being biblically accurate are so important. An example of this is the song "Canyons," while we are not directly quoting a scripture, we filtered all the lyrics through the theme of Ephesians 3:18 which is Paul's prayer that the Church would be able to grasp the dimensions of God's love.
Q: What about nature? I believe you do love the outdoors, how has God's creation been an inspiration to you as a songwriter?
Yes, I live in middle Tennessee where there are hundreds of hiking trails scattered throughout the region. A few years ago, as I began writing for this project, I took up hiking as a hobby. I saw rushing waterfalls, valleys, mountaintops, caves, and so much of God's beauty in creation. This is one of the ways God speaks to me and helps me understand more about Him. So, I love to incorporate those images into my songwriting.
Q: Your EP was released a few months ago, and now your full length album is coming out soon! What are you most excited about this album?
A: I am most excited about two things: (1) how these songs will help the Church to draw closer to Jesus and (2) how these songs might cross the borders and reach those who don't know Jesus. I've already received a few messages from people who aren't Christians that have said they are being ministered to by this album.
Q: Besides writing your own music, your song "I Got Saved" was recorded by Selah. How did that happen? Were you pleased with Selah's take of your song?
A: It's a pretty awesome story. A few years ago, my friends and co-writers on this song, Jennie Lee Riddle and Crystal Yates, were leading this song at the National Worship Leader Conference and Todd Smith's (of Selah) wife heard the song there and sent it to him. Todd reached out to Jennie and asked about the song. And yes, I'm so grateful that Selah recorded this song! It's such an honor and I know that so many lives are being impacted because of their heart to carry it.
Q: You've also recorded your own version for your new album too! How is your version different than that of Selah's?
A: "I Got Saved" definitely lends itself towards the Americana / Southern Gospel genre, which I love, but not all "millennials" relate easily to that genre. So, I really wanted to record a version that would carry the song to the younger generation.
Q: There are quite a few songwriters you have collaborated with for this new project. Who are some of them? Any interesting stories to share while you were co-writing?
I had the privilege of working with writers like Krissy Nordhoff ("Your Great Name"), Jennie Lee Riddle ("Revelation Song"), Michael Farren ("Let It Rain"), Dustin Smith, Crystal Yates, Rhyan Shirley, and Kyle Lee...
Sure! The night before the live recording, we were still missing one more song for the album. So, Kyle Lee and Rhyan Shirley were in the studio and I was at my church. We met up on FaceTime and wrote a song in about 90 minutes that we recorded the following night. That song is "Nothing Is Impossible (Walk Through Fire)." That song has become one of my favorites!
Q: Does songwriting come easy for you? What was the most difficult song you wrote on the new album? And why?
A: Songwriting has been something I've had to grow into. It also depends on who I am writing with... Sometimes songs come quickly and sometimes they take more time and development. The most difficult song to write on this album was You Promised because during that time I was really struggling personally to see the promises of God. But after we finished this song, it quickly became dear to my heart and is now a personal anthem!
Q: In the process of making this album, what new insights did you learn about God and His ways?
A: I learned a little more of just how faithful God is to my heart. He never gives up and if He speaks a word into our lives and gives us a promise, He will fulfill it! I can testify to this first-hand. I am amazed at just how much goodness God has poured into my life. I know more right now of how much He loves me than I ever have before. He is good!