Andrew Ehrenzeller who is signed to the Jesus Culture label is a passionate worship leader/songwriter who invites others into relationship with the Father through his song and lyrical depth. Stylistically noted as worship with a "prophetic edge," Andrew leads from the place of being "sheltered" in God, being seen yet still hidden. The nature of his music is rich and complex but not complicated. It's a new sound but an old cry.
A native of Florida, Andrew has been writing and performing since childhood. He grew up near Cape Canaveral, where men and women were routinely launched into space. Those exploits are clearly reflected in the spirit of Andrew's music as it invites the listener to get caught up into rarified atmospheres. Andrew is also married to his beautiful bride, Mary Kat Ehrenzeller. They reside in South Florida and are enjoying their newborn, Liam Valor.
Andrew has just released his new worship album "Children of Promise," we are so honored to be able to catch up with him for this Hallels' exclusive interview.
Hallels: How are you feeling Andrew?
Hi Tim, thanks for asking. I'm feeling great at the moment. My family and I just got back from Jesus Culture Atlanta and had an amazing time there with the team. We're thankful to be a part of what God is doing through the Jesus Culture movement.
Hallels: I have read that just before the birth of your child and the release of your new album, you became very sick. For our readers who may not have heard of your illness, can you briefly tell us how that happened?
Well the skinny version is a week before our son Liam was born I went into the ER thinking I was experiencing concussion symptoms from a hard fall I took a few weeks earlier. After some tests it was apparent that we were looking at something more serious. There was some swelling in my brain and also what the doctors called two lesions. They looked for cancer in my body but couldn't find any so they were left guessing. With the birth of my son only a week a way we had to pause the diagnosis. A few weeks later the doctors scheduled a brain biopsy to determine the illness but by that time everything had either disappeared or shrunk so much that a biopsy was impossible. A few weeks after that an MRI revealed that there was virtually nothing left. It was, shall I say, very confusing to the medical community.
Hallels: During your time of sickness, what gave you the strength to go through such uncertain times and pain?
I think first and foremost it was my history with God. He's always been faithful to me in the past. I had no reason to believe that He would be otherwise this time around. Sure, it was scary and there was way more at stake because of my wife and newborn, but in uncertain times I do know this for certain: God is faithful to His covenant promises. Secondly, we had so many faith-filled, walking-in-the-Spirit type friends surrounding us that it just felt like the devil picked the wrong dude to mess with.
Hallels: On top of that you were about to release your album "Children of Promise." What song or songs from the album mean the most to you when you were going through your illness?
Well, they say "timing is everything." Why not throw a major label release in the mix just to make the story more interesting, right? I think it poetic, even prophetic, that the first single off of Children of Promise is a song called Band of Sons (which is actually being released on a compilation today called REVERENCE: an offering https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/reverence/id899622869). That song to me was (and is) one of my favorites.
Hallels: What's your role in Jesus Culture? And how's your involvement helped you in the writing and recording of this album?
Both my wife Mary Kat and I are artists on the Jesus Culture music label. If you haven't heard her yet she was featured on a previous JC release called Emerging Voices. It's a must have! I'm proud to say I married my favorite female vocalist ever.
I also loved working with producer Jeremy Edwardson and the JC band. When I brought them all the songs for Children of Promise I knew I could really trust the recording process. Those guys are top notch all the way!
Hallels: In my review of your album, I did give my two cents worth about what I think the album cover is about. Can you tell me about the inspiration and meaning of your album cover?
Yeah, I always loved the idea of flying ships for this record. The cover is inspired by an old WWII photo I found of these Japanese ships sailing towards Mt Fuji. It was really striking to me. Faith being such a major theme of the record, I wanted to illustrate the idea of seeing where God wants to take us but also feel our inability to get there.
To me the mountain on the cover represents the presence of God and the place of worship, the place of God's heart. On Mt. Moriah is where Abraham ultimately exchanged his promised child (Isaac) for the promise of God's presence (Jehova Jireh, or "the LORD will be seen"). There he saw a foreshadow of what God had in store. Though he may not have fully understood what was happening, Jesus said Abraham saw His (Jesus) day and it gave him immense joy (Jn. 8:56). In the end Abraham received the blessing of both promises because he trusted and obeyed the Lord.
Red ships sailing above the clouds don't make any sense to the natural mind. Obviously ships belong in water confined to their natural environment. However, imagine with me a realm where our faith, trust, and obedience causes us to experience the unconventional, like a flying ship carried not by the strength of our convention but the wind of God's Spirit. I believe that was what God was teaching Abraham. He was showing him a glimpse of the Kingdom where faith is the currency and where the impossible is God's opportunity to reveal His love. God wants us to meet Him there in the place of His heart. So God has prescribed to us a means to experience this, His Spirit. Holy Spirit is God's answer to loving Him and experiencing Him as God desires to be loved and experienced.
Hallels: For our readers who would like to purchase your new record or find out more about you, where can they go?
To find out any info regarding ministry events or to purchase resources you can always visit my website www.andrewehrenzeller.com or visit the JC website at www.jesusculture.com. Thanks for everything Tim!