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Beasley releasing worship album April 16

Published 7:37pm Wednesday, April 3, 2013


Joanna Beasley’s third album, “LoudLove,” drops on her birthday, April 16.

The Christian artist, who divides her time between Nashville and her hometown, Edwardsburg, expounded on the title throughout her concert April 2 at Southwestern Michigan College’s Dale A. Lyons Building.

“I feel right at home. Growing up in this area, I always said I’d never live here again. I went to Nashville and commute back because we love it here so much.”

Opening with “Wishing Well,” off her second release, “Patiently Waiting,” she recalled “freaking out” at the thought of walking down the aisle with Kerry.

“The Lord calmed my heart immediately,” she said.

She was 19 when her first recording, “My World,” debuted in August 2005.

After two Christian pop discs, LoudLove is a worship album.

“I come from a really big Italian family, and we’re all crazy,” the former Joanna Martino said. “My dad, grandpa and great-grandpa were pastors. So many people in my family are pastors. I went to Christian private school until high school. I knew the Bible, but in reality I was missing it completely. I knew God existed, loved him and knew he loved me. In Timothy, it says even when we are unfaithful, he remains faithful. Bob and Audrey Meisner have a phenomenal story of God’s redemption. She had an affair and got pregnant with a biracial baby while they were pastors in their church. They stayed married and worked through it. The husband raised that baby as his own. That spoke to me and Kerry. Even though there’s infidelity, God is willing to take us back. Growing up, I felt like I had to be perfect for God to love me. I struggled. My journals are up and down. In your moments of mistakes, failure or sin — pressing the button to look at porn, sleeping with someone, lying — or great success when you make the right decision, the Bible says you are righteous. God sees us as perfect, spotless people because of the blood of Jesus. That makes me want to serve God. Kerry said, if I cheat on him, he will still love me and never stop pursuing me or standing by my side. He’ll never stop being my husband. It made me so in love with him. I wanted to be a better wife and learn how to cook better meals. God is never against you. He loves you and wants to help you. You’ll start living holier by accident than you ever will on purpose. Loud, unconditional love radically changed my life.”

In February, Beasley attended the Grammy Awards in Los Angeles with her husband, who is not a musician, but because her friend, Britt Nicole, crossed over to the Billboard charts with “Gold.”

She blogs about the Grammy experience on her website: “The best performance I’ve ever seen on live TV, by Justin Timberlake.”

“Kelly Clarkson was also one of my favorite performers. The first time I ever heard her sing was when she did the grand finale (as Fox’s first “American Idol”). It made me cry, which inspired me to audition the following year ( when Ruben Studdard beat Clay Aiken) and changed my life forever — and she about did it again. She is incredible.”

The 16-year-old Beasley finished in the final 80 contestants — one cut from national television.

Another influence is more local — her high school choir director, David Carew, SMC choral director.

“He really encouraged me at a young age and is instrumental in my career. Teachers don’t have an easy job, but they sneak so many good things into your life every day,” she said before performing “Fight for Me.”

Beasley brought her band, which enhanced the fullness of the sound without sacrificing the intimacy of the setting. Her fan club filled the seats.

She played piano and strummed a diminutive guitar mistaken for a ukulele.

Venezuela native Ricardo Urdaneta, an Elkhart factory worker, played a cajon, a box-shaped percussion instrument from Peru, slapping the front face with his hands, like a bongo. Sean Patrick supplied cello, upright bass and keyboards, with Kassie Johnson sharing vocals.

“The farthest I’ve gone with her is South Carolina,” Urdaneta said.

Beasley performs in Florida in May and June, and frequently at her Granger church.

She has three older sisters and a brother. Her sister, Susanna Anderstrom, Miss Edwardsburg 2006, teaches first grade at Edwardsburg Primary School.

Alpha Kappa Omega sponsored her concert.

Jeff Whittaker, senior pastor at Michiana Christian Embassy in Niles, introduced her.

 Dowagiac Daily News







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