Saturday, September 19, 2009

Tommy Job Has a New Song of Praise

Born in Korea, but raised in the United States, Tommy Job spent his formative years in Illinois and Iowa before settling in New York. He began studying music at nine years old and by eleven, he was playing guitar at his church’s main service. At fourteen, he began to understand God wanted to demonstrate His love, power and strength to him through worship.

Tommy became involved in public ministry beyond his local church and traveled nationwide, often times performing to audiences of over 1,000. Songwriting became his passion. He took a leap of faith and moved to South Korea in the fall of 2001 to start that ministry. He began leading worship at a U.S. Army base where he played not only for the men and women in uniform, but also for Anne Graham Lotz, Evangelist Billy Kim and several generals.

Spending two years writing songs and recording, Tommy released his first album, Stand Upon the Rock, in November 2003. By spring 2004, he had sold over 2,000 copies in South Korea alone. Thanks to Tommy’s network of friends from the military, his album has received radio play here in the States.

Now residing in Nashville, Tenn., Tommy intends to grow his ministry through his music. He recently released his new CD, New Song of Praise. With music that appeals to the masses, he has been able to spread a message of hope and faith to thousands of people around the world.

I like his song "Mighty Is Our God." It's easy to learn and praises God as the Ruler of all creation. It reminds us of his attributes--holy, sinless, perfect. The instrumentation sweeps me into God's presence.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Chinese Mary and Baby Jesus Painting

I came across this image when searching for Asian Christian artists a while back. Though the painting doesn't fit the blog parameters of performing artists or writers, I thought it was interesting. I have never seen a picture like this before. As you can tell, it depicts Mary, the mother of Jesus, and baby Jesus as Chinese. I guess I'm used to seeing them portrayed as white. But then I came across a picture of the pair as black people. It's interesting to see how different cultures claim these two Jewish persons as their own. In a way, it shows that Christianity crosses cultural lines and is not just for the Western world.

I don't know who painted this picture. When I looked for it again on the Internet, I couldn't find it. Does anyone know more about it?

Thursday, September 10, 2009

If You Listen to Only Won CD, Listen to Glory

Only Won brings out the best of three cultures. On his American side, he's a rapper and actor, on the Chinese side, an engineer and martial artist. Overarching these two sides is his Christian faith.

Glory, his second CD, is a unique collection of rap songs glorifying God using English and Cantonese phrases and western and Chinese instrumentation. For instance, on the song "Glory," he says, "NAY HO YEE CHERNG SUW GOH WHAT JEH WAN HA blues, but look what my God can do." Accompanying the words is a lion dance drum, small gong and a synthesizer.

Only's acting credits include parts in The Pursuit of Happyness, The Hulk, and The Matrix 2 & 3 among others. He is a mechanical engineer and has earned a black sash in kung fu.

Some of you may have seen a parody on YouTube that Only performed with Larissa Lam of Kayne West's "American Boy," called "Cantonese Boy." In case you missed it, here it is again:

If you like rap, check out Only Won, and see what an Asian American Christian rapper can do.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Mike Toy Pens Peanut Butter & Jelly: How to Find a Match Made in Heaven

When I first heard of Mike Toy's dating book, Peanut Butter & Jelly: How to find a Match Made in Heaven, I thought it might be a great book for my daughter. But when parents "suggest" a book to teenagers, they are often met with resistance. I suppose I could just leave it on the dining room table and hope she picks it up.

Anyway, the book is divided into sections for guys and girls and both. Since I'm a girl, I started with the female section, but that was a mistake because it referred back to statements in the males' part. Actually the guys' portion has tips on the art of conversation that anyone can use in many types of relationships. And learning what to do when someone breaks up with you applies to both sexes.

The examples portray mostly situations college and young career-aged people might encounter, but the Biblical principles and advice apply to teenagers and others too. The humorous, easy-to-understand language was an enjoyable read. Perhaps if my daughter hears me laughing, she'll wonder what's so funny and be curious to read it.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Eric Owyoung Leads Future of Forestry on New Album, Travel II

Eric Owyoung and his Christian alternative rock band, Future of Forestry, are coming out with a new album, Travel II, next Tuesday, Sept. 8th. The band has been together under this name since 2006. Future of Forestry (FOF) gets its name from a poem by C.S. Lewis.

Hailing from Southern California, FOF plays to both Christian and secular audiences, which gives it a great opportunity to express art and faith in a variety of places. In a recent interview with Christian Music Today, Eric says,"...I'm passionate about—seeing God's presence touch people in a non-religious environment." Eric wrote all the songs and his wife, Tamara, designed the cover art.

I was able to listen to the first five songs on the album. Out of the five, I liked "Set Your Sails" the best. It encourages listeners to set their course for heaven's shore.