Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Looking back at 2008 and ahead to 2009

2008 was a turbulent year for most of us. The shaky economy, a new political regime and all the hoopla that preceeds that, and just general un-easiness was in the air. The music industry once again took some hard blows this year and it seems that there was much more news about layoffs and bankruptcies than there was about positive events for music in 2008.

Despite the doom and gloom that seemed to be all around us though, I am humbled to say that the Facedown label family (Facedown, Dreamt, Strike First) had another year of growth in many areas in 2008. Rather than letting go of employees, we actually increased our staff. Facedown Fest 2008 sold out both nights. We re-launched Strike First Records (which is off to an incredible start), and we had the priviledge of releasing some great new albums from War Of Ages, For Today, My Epic, Wrench In The Works, Take It Back!, Thieves & Liars, Call To Preserve and more!

Looking forward to 2009, I can honestly say I am more excited than I have been in the 11+ years of being involved with Facedown Records. Sure, the release schedule is the strongest we have ever had (more info on that a little below) but most importantly, the roster of artists that we are working with and the staff here at the label are more focused than we have ever been. Now I'm not talking about a "positive mindset" or anything like that. I'm talking about a strong desire to honor, glorify and bring joy to God through what we do. We all count it a huge blessing to have the opportunity to do what we do with our lives and it would be a wasted life if that wasn't turned back to glorify the ONE who gave us all that we have and who all creativity flows from. It is my prayer that people would be impacted by God through the music that our labels release. Whether you've been at an all time low, or are currently at an all time high, I pray and hope with my whole heart that the God who created the universe would enpower, encourage and humble each and every one of us. That we would be drawn to Him and that along the way, we would see others as greater than ourselves and that humility would be our strongest desire. That we could say as the apostle Paul did in I Corinthians 11:1 "Be imitators of me as I imitate Christ". That Worship would be so much more than 40 minutes of music at a concert or church service, and that we would realize and grasp the fact that without humility, there is no worship.

This label exists to bring glory to God. To be facedown is an act of falling in reverence and humbling yourself to something far greater than yourself. I pray that the albums we release would help bring you to this place in life. As I type this, we have 5 bands currently in the studio pouring their hearts out over the music they are preparing for you. 2009 will be bringing new albums from Impending Doom, Hands, Sleeping Giant, The Great Commission, A Plea For Purging, For Today, Earth From Above, A Hope For Home, Thieves & Liars and many more. It's going to be an exciting time and I cannot wait for you all to hear these albums. I had the priviledge to spend some time in the studio this week with Impending Doom and I can honestly say their new album "The Serpent Servent" is going to be unbelievable!!! I've also had the honor of having some new material from Hands (our newest signing, just announced today) for the past few months and it is nothing short of amazing. This blog posting was written while listening to their song "Revelation" and I encourage everyone to check that out on the bands myspace page now. It's a long track (almost 10 minutes) so if you have A.D.D., then fast forward to the 5 minute mark and enjoy!

I will be doing my best, along with the rest of our staff here at the label, to keep this blog more updated in the new year. It's my goal that this blog can be a more personal side of Facedown Records and the ministry that we are involved with. In closing, I want to say a huge "thank you" to everyone who has supported this label in 2008 and over the years. To anyone that has bought an album (either a CD or on iTunes), merch from our online store, or has supported our bands on tour, you are the fuel that keeps this label going forward. Thank you so much for that. I pray that we can serve you through the music we release and that it would inspire you to serve others and to live your life to bring joy to God in all that you do.

"Hear O Earth, the Lord Our God is One"
(kindly borrowed from Hands "revelation")

Jason & the entire Facedown Family

this blog and my days lately have been inspired by the following:
BOOK: "Don't Waste Your Life" by John Piper

MUSIC: "The Sound Of Earth" by HANDS

Dec. 16, 2009: Encinitas, CA. Sunset before the annual Facedown Staff Christmas dinner and year end meeting. "God called the dry land Earth, and the waters that were gathered together he called Seas. And God saw that it was good." Genesis 1:10