Following nearly a decade without new music, Rebecca St. James is back in the spotlight with a new podcast, a new song, and – soon – a new album.
St. James released a new single June 12, one month after she launched a new podcast, Rebecca St. James Friends & Family, about faith and family life. Next month, she will release a new worship album, Dawn.
It’s been nine years since she released new music and about seven since she toured. But St. James – who has nine No. 1 Christian radio singles, multiple Dove Awards, and a Grammy – says she’s enjoyed the time out of the limelight. She was married during her hiatus. She also gave birth to two children, both girls. She’s now pregnant with her third child, a boy.
“I have enjoyed it very much,” she told Christian Headlines, referencing her time away from music. “I felt very called to kind of take a hiatus from music. … I was pretty exhausted at that point after doing nearly two decades of music. I just needed to live out this dream of establishing family life.”
During that time St. James helped her brothers – Luke and Joel Smallbone of King & Country – pen three songs on their album Burn the Ships. (They sang backup for her prior to forming their own group.) She also experienced multiple instances of joy and tragedy – experiences she discusses on her podcast.
“God just did a lot in our family's life during that time,” she said of her hiatus. “Some of it was just really beautiful – like dreams come true to me. And some of it was really challenging. Some of it was like a winter season. I miscarried a few times. And my husband was going through a very disconcerting, challenging vocational time in his life. But in that time of what I consider to be our winter, God was doing a lot of beautiful things. ... We see a lot of purpose in that pain now.
“God has brought us into a spring in our lives and we're able to speak about the hope and the redemption of how God can restore seasons out of winter and bring you into the spring.”
The podcast is available on AccessMore.com, a new podcast platform launched by Air1, K-LOVE and WTA. The podcast is a good fit for her, she says, because she’s a “very curious person” and enjoys hearing others’ stories. She interviews guests and discusses everything from parenting, to family life, to faith.
“The early response has just been really wonderful to see people thankful for it – but also a lot of people tuning in, probably more than what we had thought or hoped for,” she told Christian Headlines.
Her new single, Battle Is The Lord’s, includes Bethel Music’s Brandon Lake.
The album, she says, will feature the modern sound found on her other albums. Luke Smallbone is on the title track.
“Musically, it's quite true to what I've done in the past and we are really trying to push forward modern sounds – just trying to be very relevant but very accessible as well,” she said. “It's pop but really fresh when it comes to the musicality. But it’s a worship album. So while we’re wanting to be real, forward-thinking and fresh with the musical side, we're also wanting these songs to be used by the church in worship.”
Photo courtesy: ©Getty Images/Terry Wyatt/Stringer
Michael Foust has covered the intersection of faith and news for 20 years. His stories have appeared in Baptist Press, Christianity Today, The Christian Post, the Leaf-Chronicle, the Toronto Star and the Knoxville News-Sentinel.