CN Interviews: C3 Music’s Christina Burrow & Nick Karlin
The latest album from C3 Music, Abide takes worshippers back to the place of living each day in Christ.
From anthems of declaration to intimate prayer-songs, C3 Music’s latest album Abide was borne out of a heart for the local C3 congregation to walk closer with Christ. City News talks to C3 Music members, songwriter and worship leader Christina Burrow and co-producer Nick Karlin about the making of this album and the power of worship.
Tell us about this album Abide and its key theme.
Christina Burrow: Our church theme for last year was “In Him”—in Christ. A lot of what we do as a church comes out of that, so we wanted to have our worship album come from that same place, just being focused on Christ being the centre of everything we do.
When we sat down to write the songs, we wanted the album to be where people found Jesus, the truth of the Word of God, we wanted to give the church things to declare over their lives and receive their breakthroughs. So the key message is really to stay in Christ, to live every single day in Christ—it’s an exhilarating adventure, walking through the highs and the lows with Him.
Nick Karlin: Even for people working in the creative field, I think “abide” coming from John 15 is the understanding that the authorship for your ideas belong to Christ and we’re just the vessels to express that and bring it to life. If we understand that God owns our ideas, our lives suddenly make sense and our creativity has a reason, a purpose, and we speak the truth of what God is saying.
How has the journey been in the making of Abide?
NK: This one was really cool, coz we wanted to just do it in-house, as the local church band, for our own local church at home.
CB: We are a movement-wide church with close to 400 churches around the world. Often in the past, we have written for all these churches, so our songs had a broader appeal, but this time we just wanted to write for the local congregation (C3 Oxford Falls) we wanted it to be words we had for our church; hopefully this would then translate to all our churches around the world.
If I were to speak on behalf of the team, I think we really re-discovered our hearts for our local congregation. We’ve been finding our sound, our fit…but there’s definitely been an explosion of worship at our church. It’s a fresh work of God, and this album has been a part of that, out of our love for the congregation and really wanting to write something that that would become swords in their hands. It’s really unified our team.
What are some of your favorite tracks from the album?
CB: “Speak” is probably one of my favorites. I think it’s a favorite at our church as well; I like the rawness of it, funnily enough, we actually wrote that song a few years ago, but it just wasn’t the right time (to be released)—we’ve changed it over time…
NK: So was “King Of Glory”. We wrote that around the time we wrote the Saints album in 2014, but it just didn’t fit, we tried so many versions of it, and finally we arrived at the version you hear on this album, and we were surprised at how well it fit with everything else. I feel maybe songs have a time when they need to be sung, and if they are birthed too early, they may not speak as powerfully as they should.
How do you define worship?
CB: Worship is an expression of our love for God. For us, it’s coming into His presence, acknowledging who He is and what He has done for us. Worship is powerful. Sometimes songs continually play in your head—and that can become annoying!—but that’s why we take our song-writing so seriously, we make sure that we are clear on the theology of what we’re writing, because we’re so aware of the power of a worship song. People will often form their theology from a worship song, so we do feel the weight of what we do.
Abide is available on iTunes.