Funny how our best selves typically surface when we aren’t trying so hard to make ourselves the “best.” Emerging singer-songwriter Kyle Sherman can certainly validate. Take, for instance, that moment this past summer, when he unexpectedly had his world shaken during a mission trip to Africa.
“Leading up to our trip to Zambia, I felt nervous. I found myself thinking, ‘Can I do this? What if the kids don’t like me? Can we stand being that far away from our own two kids and for that long?’” Kyle recalls. “We didn’t have any connection to these children before the trip outside of being told I would have ten boys and my wife Stacie would have ten girls. Day one we really just spent time getting to know a bit about the kids and sharing a little about ourselves. The first big step for us came at the beginning of day two. The buses rolled up and we could see our kids running for us yelling, ‘Uncle Kyle!’, ‘Auntie Stacie!’. I think it was then that we knew, we were forever connected to these children”.
Indeed, there’s a bit of a pattern in the, Texas native’s life story when it comes to receiving what’s hoped for, after surrendering it for a season.
Fort Worth-based singer-songwriter Kyle Sherman recently signed on as the flagship artist to brand new label RayLynn Records, owned and operated by Texas entrepreneurs Bob and Janice Simpson. An opportunity that presented itself during a time period when a record deal wasn’t even on his radar.
“It’s crazy how God works,” Kyle says. “A few years ago, I pushed pretty hard to do my own thing as a singer-songwriter. I used my own money for a flight to Nashville, hoping I could get anything going as a recording musician, but every well I approached would dry up. It clearly wasn’t the right time then.”
Kyle continued on a decade-long path of leading worship that started at his local church as a teenager, progressed to Dallas Baptist University, and finally took on a full-time role as worship leader at Lifechurch.tv’s Fort Worth campus for over three years under the leadership of renowned pastor/author Craig Groeschel.
“I don’t know that I’ve ever specifically felt God calling me to be a worship leader, but He’s repeatedly placed me in that position,” says the Fort Worth, Texas native. “There’s always been an ember burning, a drive to minister to people in my life, and doors have kept opening for me to do that through leading worship.”
In 2010, fellow Lifechurch.tv attendees Bob and Janice Simpson approached Kyle with the initial conversation of making a record.
“I kind of chuckled, thinking it was a cool thought, but I knew the Simpsons were super busy and really didn’t know what might happen from that initial exchange,” Kyle recalls. Sure enough, a year after that conversation with the Simpsons, Kyle was back in Nashville—this time with a record deal—pouring his heart into a microphone.
“There are elements within this record of all kinds of influences,” Kyle says. “From stuff I was crazy about in college, like Shane & Shane and David Crowder Band, to more recently, Needtobreathe, OneRepublic and even Eric Clapton. I hope these songs reflect nuances of all this, but ultimately take on a style that is uniquely my own.”
Consequently, Kyle doesn’t short-change his individuality as a songwriter either. Within a culture where it’s easier to keep songs focused on the good and the joyful, Kyle discovered that recording his most honest songs – the Psalm-like “Already Here”, for instance – was somewhat nerve-racking, but necessary. “I wrote ‘Already Here’ with the guys from The Afters while on tour. It was a song that poured from our hearts as we talked about hard times that our families and people we loved had been through over the past couple years. It’s scary and vulnerable to say ‘I don’t understand you, God’ or ‘It feels like I’m all alone’ when expressing how we really feel about living out our faith. But it’s been proven over and over that the most relatable music is the most emotionally transparent. It’s been great to experience peoples’ walls breaking down through these songs.”
Look for the upcoming radio single, “Already Here” this spring!