Grammy-winning Christian pop singer-songwriter Amy Grant performs twice in the Charlotte area this weekend: The youthful 51-year-old will join fellow gospel artists Sandi Patty and Mandisa, plus other Christian authors and speakers, Friday at the Women of Faith Conference at Time Warner Cable Arena. Shell also headline at Wingate Universitys Austin Auditorium Saturday.
Grant says the Women of Faith show came at the right time for her.
My mother passed away last year, and she was such a consistent voice in my life, she says. During the time right around her death, I was involved with Women of Faith on the West Coast and then this year working closer to home on the East Coast. It has been truly a godsend.
Close to 8,500 people from across the Carolinas and 24 other states are expected to attend the two-day program. Celebrate What Matters seeks to encourage and inspire through live music, humor, Bible-based teachings and personal stories from speakers and authors during its four-month tour of 23 North American cities.
When Grant returns home to Nashville, Tenn., shell begin working on her upcoming album. One song, How Mercy Looks From Here, was inspired by the Nashville flood. Grants home was one of only two on her street that wasnt flooded.
I worked on a house of a music friend of mine who said, When the water in the house was up to our armpits, I had a standing lamp that was on. I cant believe we werent electrocuted, she says.
Grant and her husband, Vince Gill, lost musical and touring equipment that was in storage, including 75 guitars. There were people that lost so much more than that.
Of the new songs shes written for the album thus far, its the only one that references her fathers dementia a story she shared last spring in People magazine. Her recounting of the former medical doctors struggle touched many readers who arent even Grants fans.
Standing in the grocery store line, in the carpool line Ive gotten so much response from that. At Radio City Music Hall backstage, I hear, Im in the same situation, she says.
Its word salad and nonsensical, except phrases hes had his whole life, like Im proud of you and I love you, she says of his failing communication skills. It really simplifies your connection with somebody when words are taken away.
I have a line in the flood song thats about my dad and talking about loss A brilliant mind that fades away, she says. The subject is still so close to home she hasnt addressed it in song much. There are times in life where theres too much to say.