Tori Kelly is not a stranger to the spotlight. Her debut studio album with Capitol records titled Unbreakable Smile was ranked number two on Billboards 200. She has worked with big-name artists such as Ed Sheeran, Amy Grant, Thomas Rhett, and Lecrae to create chart-topping music and also made a vocal debut in the animated movie "Sing!".
This rising star has made a bold move and decided for her next EP to be an R&B-infused, infectiously melodic take on the classic gospel. As Christian music doesn't traditionally have a reputation of being at the top of Billboard charts such as her previous music, Tori Kelly's new EP, Hiding Place, is challenging the music industry and bringing faith back into pop culture.
If anyone was going to make Christian music pop radio-friendly, it had to be Tori Kelly. Her reputation circles around her incredible vocals, but her ear for creating inventive and fresh music has kept everyone hungry for more. While standing at the starting gate, why was releasing a worship album such an innovative statement and perhaps a risky move?
Because Christian music doesn't sell like pop music. But maybe, because of Tori, it can.
Check out the comment sections of her new worship releases "Soul's Anthem (It is well)" and "Help Us To Love." They all seem to have a similar trend.
"This was exactly what I needed to hear right now."
"Thank you for bringing me closer to God."
"I am currently going through a hard time, and this song appeared on my recommended feed. This song had me overflowing with tears. I'll put my hope in God for I will still praise Him!"
A recognizable woman in the music industry is willing to risk materialistic album charting prizes to sing the music that truly speaks to her soul. Whether she released it or not, this music has the power to change so many people's lives by simply giving worship music the exposure it deserves.
We live in challenging times and we all live through difficult seasons. We lose the people we love. We take chances that don't work out in our favor. We struggle with our faith. We struggle with ourselves. We struggle with who we are.
Christian music can't solve all of our problems overnight but allowing God to enter into your life can indeed change it. If it takes a Tori Kelly song on YouTube to help bring someone closer to God, stronger in their faith and more secure in their beliefs, then she's doing everything right.
Christian music will never be main-stream media friendly. It is unlikely you will hear one of these songs while you're listening to your car radio, but what is likely is this music to reach people who need to hear it.
I praise Tori Kelly for her new worship EP. Not only is it beautifully recorded and produced, but it is also a beautiful reminder that we all have faith to fall back on. Even if she doesn't become a top Billboard 200 album, she chose to sing the songs that people actually need to hear.