Shon Murray has just released her critically accalimed new album "Ready." On this new record, you will find Murray covering all kinds of styles from contemporary Christian pop to Gospel to worship to even an African praise medley. We are honored to be able to catch up with Shon Murray for this exclusive interview.
Hallels: Thanks Shon for your time. For our readers who may not be familiar with you, can you briefly tell us who you are?
I'm a Jesus Follower. I'm married to my best friend and I'm a mom. I love to laugh, and I believe that a cup of coffee makes everything better. EVERYTHING!
Hallels: How would you describe your style of music?
Eclectic I suppose. Praise and worship is my first love but contemporary Christian music is my new love. Traditional gospel is my foundation, so and they all express parts of me.
Hallels: You have covered quite a number of styles on your new record "Ready," but I really like it best when you croon a worship ballad like "No One Higher." It's my favorite song off that album. What made you want to record this song?
It is pure worship. It expresses exactly what I wanted to do with this album. Be totally selfless and declare that NO ONE is higher than our God. We are living in a culture where it seems like Worship Leaders and Christian artists have somehow forgotten what they were created to do. Our music is a ministry tool. Whenever we are leading a congregation, our job is to lead people into HIS presence and step out of the way. After all, they came to worship Jesus...not us.
Hallels: You have also recorded Chris Sligh's "Empty Me," which is such a gorgeous song of surrender, what made you decide to do this cover?
I did this song because it is my hearts cry. Everyday that I wake up, I die to my agenda and embrace Gods agenda for my life. By nature, we are all selfish and prideful in some way. The lyric that says: Empty me of the selfishness inside and every vain ambition and the poison of my pride puts me in check every time! I realize that my identity is hidden is Christ's identity and my ambition is NOT to make my name great...but to make HIS name great!
Hallels: Also, there's an African Praise Medley on the album, what's the story behind the inclusion of this song?
My husband and I went to South Africa in 2013 on a mission's trip with our church and it radically changed our lives. I experienced God and a love for Africa and for missions that is beyond my comprehension. We were in a worship service with people from all over Africa. In fact, sixteen nations were represented and when they all began to sing, it was the most beautiful singing I had ever heard. So, the background vocals that you hear on the beginning of the African Praise Medley is an actual recording from one of the worship experiences we were a part of with the people in Africa. As we made our journey back to the United States, I knew that I had to include them on this album!
Hallels: You also lead worship in church, what do you think is the most important characteristic of a Godly worship leader?
I'll answer this question with a quote by Charles Stanley. The top three characteristics of every believer should be: 1. Humility 2. Humility 3. Humility When an artist uses Gods platform to go after stardom, they take away the very thing they are there to promote...the glory of God. When we try leading people into Gods presence in arrogance instead of humility, we conjure up the very spirit we are supposed to be fighting against. I don't believe God is looking for rock stars; He's looking for servants.
Hallels: For our readers who would like to purchase your album or find out more about you, where can they go?