Plumb is not an artist I would typically imagine performing at Worship on the Waterfront. She's a bit edgy for that. It's one of the qualities I love about her music. It's raw and honest and intense. She lets her heart bleed out like no other artist I know. On the drive from Washington to Michigan, I found a Christian radio station and noticed a song I wasn't familiar with. Over and over I heard it and knew it was new. When I got settled in the camper and had a bit of time and wifi, I looked her up on itunes. She had a new album that I downloaded immediately and as I scrolled down, I noticed that she had written a book last fall. Of course I got that as well.
The music on her new album resonated with me right away. Praise to God in Plumb's passionate style. I've listened to it a million times now. The prayers have become my friend.
Every time I needed to escape and regroup a bit through the next few weeks, I pulled out her book to read. I laughed at the stories of her early days in the music industry. She has a wonderful ability to smile at herself and asks you to join with her in experiencing those moments. I know nothing about being a musician, writing songs, recording albums or going on tour. It seems glamorous and cut throat at the same time. She shares her experience from the beginning until now--the ups and downs and reality of being in the spotlight.
But the real heart of the book is Plumb's personal story. The places in life where she is not a musician, but a real person. With honesty she shares the struggles her marriage went through and the beautiful outcome. As is evident in each song she writes, her heart is to give hope where there is none.
The forecast wasn't good the night of the concert. I kept checking the website to see if it had been moved inside. I dragged my family and friends there early (two hours early to be exact) and we waited as people began lining up behind us. My people went to find food and get ice cream. They went in shifts to keep our spot, but that wasn't necessary as nothing could get me to move and risk loosing my place in line. They returned with a mostly melted ice cream cone the was yummy and perfect and part of the memory. We finally were allowed in and found our place in the bleachers. A local church band opened with a time of praise. How good if felt to be singing songs to God while the wind tore my voice to Heaven. Clearly a storm was moving in. Plumb came out and began to sing. Familiar with every song I closed my eyes and enjoyed the moment. I've never seen a storm like this one move in. A pure white roll of clouds formed an arch with jet black sky creating a drastic contrast. The white cloud rolled and tumbled as it moved closer and the wind picked up. She re-ordered her songs, getting the most popular ones in before she was whisked of the stage to safety. The crowd went running to their cars.
As the rain pounded on the camper roof that night, I closed my eyes and heard Plumb pouring out her soul with the message of hope.