Ryan Stevenson has recently released his new studio album, Wildest Dreams. The new studio project was almost entirely produced by Micah Kuiper and Bryan Folwer for Man Cub Music House along with production from Jordan Sapp and Tyrus Morgan.
Wildest Dreams is a collection of songs that will inspire the listener to move to a place of trust and dependence on God. In addition to honoring his mother on the album ("When We Fall Apart"), Stevenson also wrote a song for his dad, "With Your Life," where he wanted him to know that he now realizes how much his dad loved him as he reflects on his own life with two boys. There is also an impactful a song, "Through It All," that touches on secrets and how debilitating the shame and pressure of our sin can be if not brought into light. He also brings his fun-upbeat melodies to the project with the nostalgic song, "My 90s."
Q: Ryan, thanks for doing this interview with us. How are you doing in this midst of this pandemic?
We are hanging in there, and pressing into God more than ever. I'm actually stirred, and sense an awakening happening within our nation.
Q: Congratulations on the release of your new record "Wildest Dreams." Your last couple of albums were very successful, did that give you a lot of pressure in the making of "Wildest Dreams"?
Actually, I felt no pressure on this record, because I didnt set out to write a record. I simply set out to write a song at a time- I got very intentional about crafting each song, and giving each one it's space to exist- in doing so, before I knew it, I had a full records worth of songs that I new needed to all be out together as a family of songs.
Q: What is your wildest dream for this new record? How do you wish this album would impact the lives of your listeners?
I hope that these songs resonate with people all over the world, in a way of revival. I pray theses songs awaken a hunger and a fire for intimacy with Jesus.
Q: I was listening to a song from your new record "Best is Yet to Come." One of the lines says, "the storm that tried to pull me under led me closer to the light." This is a powerful line. How does suffering draw us closer to God?
The bible says in James to "count it all joy when you face trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience". I could list a myriad of other scriptures that speak of how Jesus is near and present in our pain and trouble- for me, through my seasons of pain and uncertainty, I've just chosen to believe that NOTHING is outside of the Lord's hands. He's overseeing the details of my journey with exquisite degrees of scrutiny, and I can trust him with the process. When we understand that we are his beloved, and we begin to get rooted and established in the fact that we're seated with Christ, everything we experience should draw us closer to him. Knowing that we joined with Jesus, should truly be the essence of the Best is yet to come!
Q: Your current single "Amadeo (Still My God)" is currently climbing up the chart. What's the story behind this song?
We live in an uncertain world- we are going to face uncertainties. My prayer is that this song will encourage us all, to hold on to the healer, and trust Him no matter what things look or feel like. I've had alot of heartache and hopless, dark times. Some of my friends have experienced life-altering tragedies- but, like Job 15 says "though he slay me, I will trust him". May we all be able to say, "you are still my God" no matter what I face.
Q: One of the most moving songs on the record is "When We Fall Apart" which I believe is about your mother. Tell us a little about your mother and how she inspired the song.
My mom was my ultimate cheerleader and spiritual rock. She poured into me, and was always encouraging me to go after the dreams and desires in my heart. My mom passed away of cancer 10 years ago, but the last conversation that we had, (while she was on hospice) was the wisdom of the words of this song. I had no idea just how much her words would end up bringing me so much healing all these years later.
Q: You also have a song on the album about your dad. Tell us about your dad and how he inspired "With Your Life."
My dad is a wonderful man- the most important man in my life. However, when I was younger, I could never understand why he didn't say the words "I love you", and didn't necessarily show affection the way I needed. I'm a lot like my mother; all heart and passion; I need to be held, and hugged and told that I have value. For years, I lived with a slight sense of bitterness toward my dad, until this last year when a special grace showed up unannounced in my heart. I realized, literally in a moment, that my father had been telling me everything I needed to hear, but just through actions. The Lord truly opened my eyes and heart to my dad's perspective. I wanted this song to be my confession to him that I understand and that I love him.
Q: In all your records, you have had some prominent guests singing with you. Previously, you had TobyMac, Amy Grant, Bart Millard, and now you have GabeReal and Paul Wright, who else would you like to work with in future projects?
I love collaborating with people who have inspired me over the years. I'd love to do something with one of my old time favorite country artists... We'll see :)