NWC to host Art-Music-Justice Concert

Five critically acclaimed artists will appear on stage at Northwestern College’s Bultman Center on Friday, Oct. 10, at 7:30 p.m. as part of an effort to “add to the beauty, seek justice and give praise to God.” The Art-Music-Justice Concert will feature Sara Groves, Brandon Heath, Derek Webb, Sandra McCracken and Charlie Peacock.

Groves and her friends say they desire for their Art-Music-Justice tour to “further educate the church on God’s heart for justice, gain advocates for the oppressed, and show evidence of God at work in this world.” Benefiting International Justice Mission (IJM) and Food for the Hungry, the concerts will include inspired music and stories of God’s people in action across the globe. Accounts of IJM’s work in rescuing people from slavery, sexual exploitation and other forms of violent oppression will be shared, while audience members will have the opportunity to help Groves’ “adopted” village in Rwanda.

Northwestern’s concert is being presented free of charge as part of the inauguration of President Greg Christy. Those attending are asked to bring two canned food items to be donated to the local food pantry.

“God is mighty to save and is actively rescuing the oppressed through his people,” says Groves. “Scripture references to the ‘slave, the poor, the oppressed’ are not figurative. There are 27 million people enslaved today. God is calling us to respond. All of us on this tour want to convey it is not a burden to help; it is an adventure. We’re excited to get out there and share what God is doing!”

Since her debut release in 2001, Groves has received rave reviews across the board for each recording from the likes of Billboard, consistently topped year-end readers’ polls, and garnered album-of-the-year nods from CCM magazine and Christianity Today Online. On her new album, “Tell Me What You Know,” Groves explores lessons on the value of long defeats and the defiance of hope in the face of insurmountable odds.

Since the 2005 release of “Add to the Beauty,” Groves has been questioning just how, exactly, she is called to do that. Her answers came in a series of global conversations and experiences, from the flood-ravaged gulf of Louisiana, to the genocide memorials of Rwanda, to the testimonies of Southeast Asia sex trade survivors. These experiences showed the disparity between some of the American pursuits of comfort and wealth and the joy of joining the difficult work of social justice and engaging in the suffering of the afflicted.

Brandon HeathBrandon Heath, winner of the 2008 Dove Award for New Artist of the Year, debuted his sophomore album, “What If We,” in August. The new album features “Give Me Your Eyes,” which is currently atop the Billboard and Radio & Records Christian Hit Radio charts. Heath’s first recording, “Don’t Get Comfortable,” delivered the No. 1 radio hit “I’m Not Who I Was,” a Song of the Year nominee.

Derek WebbA former member of Caedmon’s Call, Derek Webb has seen career sales approaching a million records, 10 Dove Award nominations, a Billboard Music Video Award nod, and six No. 1 radio hits. His fourth solo project, “The Ringing Bell,” was recognized by Christianity Today and Paste magazine as one of the best albums of 2007.

Sandra McCrakenSinger/songwriter Sandra McCracken, Webb’s wife, has been called Nashville’s best-kept secret. A music graduate of Belmont University, she has built a substantial presence in the independent music world. She has toured nationally and sold over 20,000 records.

Charlie PeacockCharlie Peacock is a Grammy Award-winning songwriter, record producer and respected author and speaker. Named by Billboard’s Encyclopedia of Record Producers as one of the 500 most important producers in music history, Peacock has received the Dove Award for Producer of the Year three times. He is also the co-founding director of Nashville’s Art House America, a ministry of hospitality, the arts and biblical teaching.

To listen to audio of Groves sharing about the Art-Music-Justice tour, and for more tour information, visit www.myspace.com/artmusicjustice.

International Justice Mission works with local officials to ensure immediate rescue and aftercare for victims of oppression, to prosecute perpetrators, and to promote functioning public justice systems. Food for the Hungry works in more than 26 developing countries providing disaster and emergency relief, as well as implementing sustainable development programs to transform communities physically and spiritually.