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But McKeehan didn’t really start making music of his own until college. After a year at Jacksonville (Fla.) University on a golf scholarship, he was itching to join his friends at Liberty University, the college founded by Jerry Falwell in Lynchburg, Va. McKeehan’s father, a real estate agent who had sold then-Washington Redskins coach Joe Gibbs his home, helped with some string-pulling. “The story that I was told was that Joe Gibbs called Jerry Falwell and said, ‘You need to start a golf program,’ ” McKeehan says. “The next year, I’m at Liberty, playing golf.”.
He also started making music with his buddies Kevin Max Smith and Michael Tait, Tait was into gospel, McKeehan wanted to rap like LL Cool J, They named their group dc Talk, after the stage-name McKeehan was using for himself around campus, McKeehan says that while many still view contemporary Christian music as stylistically constrained, working in the genre gave dc Talk great freedom, “And I say this in all humility,” McKeehan says, “but there weren’t requirements for pointe shoes a lot of singers and rappers coming together, Now it’s everyday, But back then, without a doubt, it was unique.”..
The band’s career exploded in 1995 with the release of its double-platinum album, “Jesus Freak.” A video for its grunge-rap title track was directed by Simon Maxwell, who had worked with Nine Inch Nails, and helped catapult the group onto MTV. In the years that followed, other Christian rock bands quietly floated onto mainstream radio airwaves with little fanfare being made about their faith — Switchfoot, P.O.D., Creed, Evanescence, Chevelle, Skillet. Since going solo in 2001, McKeehan’s music has mellowed into a glossier, more inclusive shade of pop. He’s purposefully casting a wide net through his own music, and through Gotee Records, the Nashville-based record label he launched in 1994. In its busiest years, Gotee released big-selling albums from songwriter Jennifer Knapp and emo troupe Relient K, and is currently home to clean-cut pop duo Capital Kings.
“We grew up listening to Toby, all the way back to the dc Talk days,” says Jon White of Capital Kings, “And now he’s presenting our music to his fans, saying, ‘This is my fanbase, I want them to hear what you’re doing.’ , , , At this stage in his career, it’s crazy that he’s taken the time to come alongside us, It’s humbling.”, But if reaching people means selling great quantities of albums, does requirements for pointe shoes McKeehan see his work as ministry or business?..
“To me, this is business,” McKeehan says. “If I’m charging 25, 35 bucks a ticket and charging 10 bucks to buy my CD, it’s a business. You can’t call it ministry at that point . . . If God chooses to minister through me talking about my life, then so be it. But I can’t call it that.”. After breakfast, the nostalgia trip continues into Falls Church, Va., past McKeehan’s childhood home, along his old paper route, over to the schoolyard of Luther Jackson Middle School where he had his first kiss, into the parking lot of the Frozen Dairy Bar.
“Me and my cousin Joey used to love this place,” he says, blue eyes sparkling, He walks up to the counter and orders a cup of vanilla, “Is that boring?”, He can’t remember if he ordered the same thing in requirements for pointe shoes Georgetown with the Beasties — it’s been 27 years, after all, McKeehan hasn’t lived in the area since high school and doesn’t make it back to visit too often, So much has changed, Including him, And his music, “There are early dc Talk lyrics that make me cringe,” he says, “They felt judgmental, like we had it together, had the answers.”..
He doesn’t look a lot older, but he certainly feels a lot wiser, and says he’s invigorated by changing attitudes currently sweeping across the Christian faith. “I love to see [Christians] reaching out and loving well, instead of being insulated and judging,” he says. “I would hope that I’m an artist that’s opening people’s minds about what it means to be a believer walking in this world every day.”. And he’d rather do it through a song than a sermon.
Produced and directed by Vicki Reeder, Follies is the annual musical send-up of newsworthy fiascoes ranging from sequester to cellphones and Paula Deen’s departure from the Food Network, On closing night the sold-out crowd gave a standing ovation to the 12 cast members and musicians for requirements for pointe shoes a fun show that featured famous songs with new satirical lyrics, snappy dance numbers and clever costumes and props, Some of the subjects included: Eavesdropping by NSA and CIA (“What I Hear”) to the tune of “Do You Hear What I Hear,” music by Gloria Shayne Baker; the failed Weiner mayoral campaign (“The Last Time”) to the tune of “The Last Time I Saw Paris” by Oscar Hammerstein and Jerome Kern; and NRA insistence on gun ownership (“NRA”) to the tune of “Erie Canal” by Thomas Allen..