Two days ago, I was in James Morrisons Studio recording the piano tracks for the album, today I was at the Holroyd Carols in the Park playing with the Merrylands Anglican Church (MAC) band. In 2010, the Carols in the Park was attended by about 3000 people.
There were plenty of stalls with food and drink for sale. MAC also had a stall where they served Turkish coffee and invited people to sit and chat. There was a main stage set up where the Holroyd brass band played with a combined choir for about 1 – 1 ½ hours.
The idea of playing for the carols had been floated months earlier and when November came the opportunity was given for us to play a 15 minute set at the event. We played some of the biggest worship numbers that we knew, things that Christians in the crowd might know and a few more obscure Christmas songs that the main band probably wouldn’t play. So the set list was:
- Indescribable (Chris Tomlin)
- While You Were Sleeping (Casting Crowns)
- You Came (James Ebdon)
- Come Hear the Angels Sing (Michael Morrow)
It was a bit of a risk to play You Came at the carols. It was the largest crowd that I’d ever played for and the only people who knew the song were the band. But it was an opportunity to plant a seed and to see whether people connected with the music. I have to admit that it felt great to be in front of the crowd playing those powerful Christian songs. Perhaps it touched someone in the crowd, someone who doesn’t really understand what Christmas means.
The band played really well (David (guitar), Aaron (bass), Mike (Drums), Kristen, Kim and Kel sang with myself on keys and vocals), and the crowd (with the exception of the guy who wanted us to play AC/DC songs) were really receptive to the songs. I really hope that the music we played will stay with some of the people who were there. In time perhaps they will think about it and come to ask some important questions about whom Jesus is and why they need him.
This was the first time in some years that the MAC band has played at the carols. I deeply hope that it won’t be the last.