CONCERT PREVIEW: Contemporary Christian superstar Chris Tomlin brings tandem, all-star show to Philly

Chris Tomlin
Chris Tomlin SUBMITTED PHOTO

IF YOU GO

What: “Worship Night in America” with Chris Tomlin, Kim Walker-Smith, Matt Maher, Christine D’Clario, Tauren Wells, Pat Barrett and Darren Whitehead.

When: 7 p.m. May 4.

Where: Liacouras Center, 1776 N. Broad St., Philadelphia.

Tickets: $15-$89.75, $14-$116.75 for family four-packs.

Info.: www.liacourascenter.com, (800) 298-4200.

Life continues to be very good for singer/songwriter Chris Tomlin.

He won the Artist of the Year Dove Award in both 2006 and 2007, a Grammy for Best Contemporary Christian Music Album in 2013, and last fall became the first Christian artist to receive the SoundExchange Digital Radio Award, which recognizes more than 1 billion total digital radio plays.

“I was so surprised by that. I thought they got the wrong person,” Tomlin said of his SoundExchange Digital Radio Award. The only other artists to achieve the award by reaching a billion digital plays of their music are Justin Timberlake, Garth Brooks and Pitbull.

Among Tomlin’s best known songs are “Good Good Father,” “Our God,” “Amazing Grace (My Chains Are Gone),” “Whom Shall I Fear,” “At the Cross,” “I Will Follow” and “Indescribable.”

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“It’s not just about me. I feel like I’m representing this genre in a special way. The church is massive all over the world, and people are plugged into the music,” Tomlin said in a phone interview from Jacksonville, Fla., while on tour for the second edition of the “Worship Night in America” Tour.

The 2018 version of Worship Night in America will have Tomlin performing on stage together with Kim Walker-Smith of Jesus Culture, Matt Maher, Christine D’Clario, Tauren Wells and Pat Barrett throughout the evening of May 4 at the Liacouras Center. Walker-Smith and Maher collaborated with Tomlin on his 2016 album “Never Lose Sight.” “The idea is who out there has that kind of humility to do the whole night together?,” Tomlin said. “The driving heart behind it is the great power in unity and being together. I feel like we’re living in a very divided nation. If there’s one place to be together, it’s worship. That was Jesus’ prayer — to make my people one.”

Tomlin said the Worship Night in America concerts are “about brining people together” and are for everyone “from Catholics to Charismatics, and everyone in between.”

But what could be the highlight of the night is when pastor and author Darren Whitehead speaks. Tomlin described it as “the best talk on praise and worship, and why we worship God.”

“It is so profound, we call (that moment of the show) ‘BD’ and ‘AD’ — Before Darren and After Darren,” he said.

Tomlin’s latest single, “Resurrection Power,” is another high point.

Walking the talk, Tomlin has been actively involved in the formation of church congregations in Atlanta, as well as Houston and Austin in his home state of Texas.

In Tomlin’s mind, playing his music at big concerts isn’t much different from his role as worship leader at Passion City Church. “The songs are arrows out of a bow. I don’t change hats; it’s just on a bigger scale — more lights and confetti,” he said with a laugh.

For more information visit www.christomlin.com or www.awakeningevents.org.