Just one year ago, the Christian music world was introduced to Gretchen Keskeys as a result of her instantly acclaimed debut album “Walking In The Spirit” (Creative Soul Records). According to CCM Magazine Contributing Editor Andy Argyrakis, this singer/songwriter may very well possess the most magnificent voice since Sandi Patty. In addition to concerts and women’s conferences all across America, the California-based artist became quite an online sensation, sharing her songs alongside an inspirational testimony that spoke of miraculous deliverance from anxiety and depression. It’s no wonder why her rapid-fire sophomore release “Pure Hope” can not only boast such an optimistic title, but also resonate with an increased artistic confidence and additional confirmation of this God-ordained calling for the wife and mother of three children whose unique media-centric upbringing (more on that later) could’ve very well led her down an entirely different path.
“When I write a song, the ideas and words come out of my conversations with God in simply talking or praying through the day,” explains Keskeys, who got her start as a worship leader with Warehouse Christian Ministries (which many CCM luminaries such as the late Keith Green have appeared). And what an amazing ride it’s been from the overwhelming and downright life-changing responses on social networking for her previous project’s lead single “Then I Met Jesus,” to appearing on nationally syndicated television shows “Babbie’s House,” CTN’s “It’s Time for Herman & Sharron,” Cornerstone Television Network’s “Real Life,” CTN’s “Bridges,” Dove Broadcasting’s “Nite Line,” WATC-TV’s “Magnify,” WREG-TV’s “Live at 9” and “Christian Music Spotlight,” plus prominent radio programs such as “Game Changers with Lisa Faulkner,” “The Long Version with Fletcher Long,” “Kingdom News” and “Debra Evans in the Morning”, among others.
Gretchen Keskeys knows what it is like to come face to face with personal fears. The writing process serves as a source of healing for her. It just so happens that her parents were the authors of the runaway best-selling book “I’m OK – You’re OK,” while her father was crowned by LIFE Magazine as “the father of pop psychology.” Nonetheless, her folks (and mother in particular) were generally supportive of her commitment to faith (no “Mommie Dearest” needed here), especially as it proved to be the ultimate answer to paralyzing fear and insecurity (that even briefly crept back up in the more recent past as she waited with uncertainty when “Walking In The Spirit” went out into the world). “I know what to expect this time. I’m at a stronger place spiritually and I’m in a place where I’m happy with whatever comes of it. When you first do something, you can get a little feeling like ‘this could be a total failure,’ but even from the couple of songs I’ve snuck out from the new project, a lot of people seem to be excited. Those ‘uncertain months’ also inspired the song ‘Adversity,’ and though they were difficult times, I am thankful for them because it has caused me to look even more to Jesus and He can use all of it for good!”
That’s already been the case as Keskeys has connected with listeners from literally every walk of life, from fellow Christians at various stages in their faith, to those of any belief background struggling with addictions, some recovering from suffering abuse and others trying to get back on their feet following a season of homelessness. Jesus Christ has healed her, given her confidence and security she had never experienced and given her endless peace and joy. This life-giving project is an outward expression of a heart that is dedicated to Jesus.
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