Stellar-Award Winning Gospel Artist Jason Nelson, Talks New Album “Jesus Revealed”
Talented gospel singer/songwriter and musician Jason Nelson, released his much-anticipated new album, JESUS REVEALED today, featuring the #1 hit gospel single “I Am”! A worshipper at heart, Jason Nelson recorded 14 live tracks last year before a packed audience in his native Baltimore. Nelson teamed up with long-time songwriting partner, Dana Sorey to co-write most of the tracks, along with his twin brother and fellow gospel artist Jonathan Nelson contributing writing on “Can’t Stop Calling,” while, Tasha Page-Lockhart lends her voice to join Nelson on “I See The Lord.”
Following his hit solo releases I SHALL LIVE, PLACE OF WORSHIP, and the Stellar Award-winning SHIFTING THE ATMOSPHERE, Jason Nelson brings listeners together in worship with his powerful performances on JESUS REVEALED. Heed had the opportunity to chat with Jason about the new project and much more! Check it out and be sure to get your copy of JESUS REVEALED today!
Mike: How are you Mr. Nelson?
Jason Nelson: I’m doing well man, can’t complain at all! You can call me Jason!
Mike: Okay! [Laughs]
Jason Nelson: I’m not big on all that formal stuff, I’d rather be normal. [Laughs]
Mike: That’s good to know! So, firstly thank you for carving some time out to chat with Heed Magazine. I know we had the chance to come out to your album listening about a month ago, so it’s cool to talk with you 1-on-1 about the new project. Can you talk to us a little about the album and the inspiration behind the title and behind some of the songs you chose to put on the album?
Jason Nelson: The project was really birthed out of a series we were teaching at our church call “The Revealed God”. While we were right in the middle of that series, I started talking to my producer Dana Sorey and I said, “Dana, I think this is what we’re supposed to be talking about for this next record,” and interestingly enough I had just taught on ‘I am…’; how God is the Great ‘I am’. That song became the first in a series of songs we wrote for this record and it was all birthed directly out of that series. Once we figured out what the subject matter was, it was a matter of naming the record appropriately and “The Revealed God” just didn’t have that ring to it…so we decided to call the record “Jesus Revealed”.
Mike: So, you mentioned your producer Dana Sorey. Who else have you worked with on this project songwriting and production wise?
Jason Nelson: Dana did all of the production this time around, from a musical perspective. I worked with Daniel Johnson who did vocal production. Featured on the record we have Tasha Page-Lockhart, who is just an amazing singer. She puts her whole heart into the song. I kind of describe her feature as her taking over; I took a step back and let her do what she does. Also featured on the album is a group from the Bronx named Livre, and they are featured on “The Worship Song.” They were awesome on this record as well!
Mike: I remember hearing your music for the first time about 8 or 9 years ago. A friend let me listen and songs like “I Shall Live” and “Know It’s Alright” are songs I listen to presently. How would you say your music has evolved since releasing that first album?
Jason Nelson: Aw man, that’s a great question. It has definitely evolved and I think evolution is probably the best word to describe it. What I would say is the material is more mature and more personal because I’ve learned how to be a little more transparent in delivering the songs. But, I think it’s gotten a lot more God-centered, not that it wasn’t God-centered before, but the material is more vertical now than it’s ever been. Let me know it that makes sense.
Mike: I’m with you brother. That makes perfect sense. [Laughs] I was watching a Youtube clip of you singing “Trust Me” by Richard Smallwood and Tye [Tribbett] was playing the piano. You are really an incredible singer, but you are extremely anointed as well. Do you find yourself having to suppress what you can do vocally, as to not be distracting during worshipful moments?
Jason Nelson: [Laughs] I’ve had several people tell me that it’s hard to worship while listening to me sing. They said they get distracted, so I do keep that in mind and I try to make sure the focus is always God. But my thing is, from a creative perspective it’s hard to suppress that because a part of what my worship is includes that.
Jason: You see what I’m saying? So it’s hard to not do it, because it’s a part of who I am just as a musician. I’ve been a musician since I was 13, so it’s hard to not be a musician while I’m singing. I am careful to make sure that placement is where it needs to be and that what I do is not overboard or becomes showy. I think that’s when it really becomes distracting, when everything you do is about producing an ‘ooh and aah’ instead of leading people into the presence of God. It’s a very thin line, but I try to maintain the integrity of the pursuit of God even though the musicality has been unveiled and uncovered at the same time.
Mike: I look at people like you and Kim Burrell as some of the few people who have been able to execute without compromising the integrity of your gift and anointing. I think that’s why it moves me because it’s so creative but still feels authentic and God-centered. But going back to the project, what are some of your favorite songs on the project?
Jason Nelson: I’m going to retreat to ‘they’re all my favorites!’ [Laughs] I’m so proud of this entire body of work. I love how the music is compiled and the sequence of the songs and all of that. “I Am” is really strong to me but it’s probably because it’s the first song we wrote for this record. I love “Way Maker” because of the story that is told as it relates to how we know Jesus as a ‘way maker’. “So In Love” because it’s so much fun. It’s the story of grace, and how God doesn’t give up on you when you give up on yourself! I could literally go through the whole record and tell you reasons why I love each of them. It’s not a song on the record that I regret putting on there.
Mike: That’s good news because I personally love the entire record, but “Way Maker” and “Can’t Stop Calling” stuck out to me personally!
Jason Nelson: Yeah, “Can’t Stop Calling” is a great record!
Mike: The groove is too sick! [Laughs] So, You are a father, a husband, a pastor and in addition to all of that you are a worship leader. How do you balance being all of those things effectively?
Jason Nelson: For me, the key is prioritizing. The first relationship that you have to manage is the one between you and God. Beyond that it’s family! My first ministry is my family. Then the church and music are interchangeable. But, after family, I’ve learned the art of just saying ‘no’. There are some things I just can’t be and some places I just can’t go and still be integral with all of the assignments that God has given me. The freedom to not be bound by anything because I have to say ‘yes’ is pretty liberating as it relates to how I manage from day-to-day. I give a lot of time to my family because I spend a lot of time on the road. I have a great staff at church so it makes it easy for me to be absent and run things. Now we have technology and you can do a whole bunch of stuff and not be in the room but feel like you’re in the room.
Mike: The last thing I want to ask you is, what are some things you ‘take heed’ to?
Jason Nelson: At the top of the list is definitely my family. They are my life and they are the reason why I do what I do. They’re the reason why I love going on the road, but they are also the reason why I love coming home. Family is definitely at the top of the list, but I would also say my relationship with God because that’s the filter through which I see everything. That’s what moderates my life. Education restrains you; there are certain constrictions that happen when you learn and I’m on this constant journey to learn God.
Check out the lead single “I Am”