McAlester News-Capital, McAlester, OK

Local News

November 5, 2013

Matthew West 'Into the Light: 'It's going to be a great night'

(Continued)

McALESTER —

Many of her acquaintances are known as the Storytellers — others whose stories West has told through his songs.
“Ryan’s been gone 4 and a-half years now,” said Danny McAfee, Ryan’s father. “God’s still using his birthday in a great way. It’s amazing.”
The artists perfroming in McAlester Thursday have been topping the charts.
West’s most recent single “Hello, My Name Is” spent 17 week in the number one slot on the contemporary Christian music charts. West said he’s been told the song set a new record for topping the charts at 17 weeks.
“What an incredible ride,” he said.
Ironically, Sidewalk Prophets had the number two single for 14 of those weeks, with their song “Help Me Find it.”
Other huge hits for Sidewalk Prophets include “The Words I Need to Say” and “You Love Me Anyway.”
The other guest, Jason Castro, is known for his single “Only a Mountain.” He’s also known as the dreadlocks- bedecked performer who had a strong finish as the third runner-up in n the seventh season of “American Idol.”
West said he’s written some new songs with the Sidewalk Prophets and he and Castro have become great friends as well.
The three acts have a chemistry that audiences seem to sense in their shows.
“It’s a great show from start to finish,” West said.
He and Castro became such good friends, that West’s band is performing with Castro during the “into the Light” tour.
“I wanted to offer audiences a chance to hear his music the way it’s meant to be heard,” West said.
In McAlester, West will have the same band with him that backed him last time, during his 2011 performance with Mandisa.
Why is contemporary Christian music growing in popularity?
“I hope it’s because the music is good,” West said. “Maybe they’re looking for something positive in their life, positive music and a positive image in the world,” West said of the growing Christian music audience.

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