STRUMMING IN THE DARK
With the help of some friends and intense practicing, within a
months time I was playing with a pro band regularly at local social
functions and parties. We lived in a single bedroom apartment. So
I used to play the bass guitar without amp and speakers by holding
it close to my chest and feeling the vibrations as I played it to avoid
disturbing anyone. I got used to sitting up at night doing this in the
dark while my parents were fast asleep. The other thing was that
since I did not own even a cassette player or have any music to
listen to, I started creating my own music.
Six months after I learnt to play the guitar, I was called to play the
bass guitar with two bands. These guys were my dad’s
contemporaries or older and they played the saxophone and
keyboards. Their repertoire of songs was timeless classics and I
learnt to play all these songs by ear – I hadn’t learned to read
sheet music then. As a 14 year old it was a great feeling to see my
friends come to hear me play with guys who were 30 years elder
to me. My evenings after school would consist of jamming with the
band and hanging out with different groups of friends before finally
heading home at 4 am.
SINGER / LYRICIST
I started a Youth Fellowship at my home on Fridays. I invited known
preachers to come and share God’s Word to us. I invited a number
of young people to attend these meetings. Soon this group grew
and we would meet on Friday, Saturday and Sunday evenings!
This was the training ground for my ministry. Through this group
came together the members of my band ‘ABDA’. We used to go
and perform at evangelistic outreaches, prayer meetings,
institutions and wherever we were called.
It was during this time that I first started composing music. One of
my first songs was “Blind Man” for which I got the lyrics after seeing a Jenson & Nicholson ad hoarding while traveling on a city bus. As the words came to me, so did the music. When people heard this number, they were deeply touched by the lyrics. Thus the Holy Spirit started giving me song after song – music, lyrics and all.
Before I came to the Lord I was not a singer but it is really amazing
how the Lord gave me this spiritual gift of writing and singing new
songs. Praise His Holy Name!