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Babbie Mason Bibliography: (click on each album cover to view tracks and Babbie Mason lyrics)
Babbie Mason Biography
Ask any Christian today how they juggle to demands of church, career and family and they'll most likely say the answer is by setting priorities. On Standing in the Gap, Babbie Mason's fifth album on Word Records, she readily admits that priorities are the central theme.
"I feel like the Lord speaks to me before He allows me to speak to the world," Mason says. "I believe the Lord is challenging me to establish priorities in my life and I think these songs remind me of specific priorities. For example, "Standing In The Gap" is about intercession. "For The Cause Of Christ" is about faithfulness. "Heart Of Mine" is a song about commitment. Those are basic principles, priorities I have to deal with on a daily basis. I think that's the theme - priorities."
Ironically it was a bowl of greasy soup that helped Babbie Mason establish her priorities early in life. Growing up in Jackson, Michigan, she knew she wanted to be a singer and although she served as choir director in the church her father pastored, she wasn't initially determined to be a Christian recording artist. Mason soon found herself leading a double life, playing secular music in clubs on Friday and Saturday nights and leading praise and worship services on Sunday morning.
"Then one day while I was in college I was eating a bowl of lukewarm soup and the grease began rolling around and separating from the soup," she recalls. "And I remembered a scripture in Revelation, the third chapter. It was a letter and I felt like this letter was written for me. It said, 'I know your works and I know you're neither hot nor cold, I'm gonna spew you out of my mouth.' The Lord was giving me a visual example of the way my walk had become and since that day I knew I had to be fully committed."
Since making that decision, God has continually blessed Mason's musical ministry. She spent time as a teacher before she being so flooded with requests for singing engagements that she decided to devote herself full time to music. She and her husband and two sons relocated to Georgia in 1980 and Mason released five independent albums, garnering an unusual amount of radio airplay for an independent artist, before being signed to Word in 1988.
Her husband handles the business part of her musical ministry and Mason is quick to acknowledge his contribution to her work. The Mason family lives outside of Atlanta, Ga. where Babbie is active in her local church, as well as, reveling in the challenges and trials of motherhood. Balancing the demands of career and family provide inspiration for the songs that fill her albums.
"I like to think that what is going on inside will manifest itself on the outside physically," Mason says. "Since the first album my relationship with the Lord has grown. The last four years I've changed spiritually. With the experiences I've had, climbing the valleys and the peaks, and dealing with new situations, I feel I am better able to express myself on this new album. I think these are some of the best songs I've ever written."
Standing in the Gap is just the latest collection of great tunes from one of Christian music's most poignant songwriters. (In addition to her own records, Mason has had her songs cut by numerous artists including Helen Baylor, Michael English, and Larnelle Harris.) On her four previous discs - With All My Heart, Carry On, A World of Difference, and Comfort & Joy - Mason established a standard of excellence with such number one tunes as "A World Of Difference" and "Each One, Reach One." The songs on Standing in the Gap are once again stamped with Mason's unique perspective, and of course, by her incredible voice.
"Recording an album is like having a baby. You conceive the ideas, they develop and then you go into labor," she says with a smile. "This album really stretched me artistically. I explored styles I had never tried before. Working with the people involved on this album made it a labor of love, a gift from "
The title cut is a commanding tune on which Mason was joined by two other top Christian vocalists - Cindy Morgan and Helen Baylor. "I wrote 'Standing In The Gap' as a song of encouragement," Mason says. "To say I'm going to do my part to help you carry your burden and intercede for you until you're strong enough to stand in the gap for me. I didn't want to say it myself. I wanted two other people to sing it with me and Cindy and Helen are wonderful. To me it's one of the highlights of the album."
The project was produced by Cheryl Rogers. "Cheryl is a phenomenal talent," Mason enthuses. "She is so gifted as a writer. She plays and sings unbelievably well." Together they've crafted an album filled with unforgettable songs. There's the joyous "I Can Hear God Singing," the Al Jarreau/Anita Bakerish sound of "So Close" and the hauntingly beautiful ballad "To The Cross." Mason says the music to that song came to her all at once as she sat at the piano reading the lyrics Julie Adams had written. "We were visited by the Lord," she says. "It was one of the most solemn moments. We each looked at each other and cried."
"Give Your Light Away" is a song that calls Christians to a greater level of commitment. "It's not just talking about giving your light away," Mason explains, "but in a way to make a difference. It's about coming out of your comfort zone. It's something I can identify with."
Writing songs people can identify with is one of Babbie Mason's gifts. Standing in the Gap is filled with songs people can relate to, songs that deal with priorities we all share as Christians, parents, spouses and friends. In her music and her life she has the ability to communicate with others by finding that common ground. The Christian music community is richer because Babbie Mason has set her priorities and chooses to share her gift.