“I love worship, and how great of an honor it is to lead and write in that space, but I also know that God has a specific call on my life to reach those outside of the four walls of a traditional church setting.”- D.P.
I’ve never written a review before. And quite frankly, the newness of the endeavour made my palms clammy, and my mouth dryer than a slice of gluten free bread. But when approached with the honor, I couldn’t refuse.
I knew with this piece...it would be special; I wanted to be intentional...not just write this in my men’s sweatpants, and coffee stained t-shirt from the comfort of my Tempurpedic.
So I threw on my slouchy sweater, twisted my hair in a bun, topped it with a Carhart, and decided- Christianna, we’re going out.
Computer in hand and enough cash for a hot cocoa, I ventured into town.
As I sat down in a cafe with a warm bevvie nestled beside me, I knew the words would come. Inhale. Exhale. "I can do this", I said to myself.
Earbuds in, I pressed play (for the thousandth time), and let the sound of the acoustic rhythms and waves of Daniel Paul begin to entice and stimulate my imagination. At once, I couldn’t help but smile. At once, I began to write.
The thing I need you to know about Daniel, is who he is. Oftentimes, it’s our knowing of a person, that makes us able to engage others in our excitement. And boy, do I want you to hop on this cheer train.
You see, if you know someone, and love who they are...honey, you could doodle on popsicle sticks and sell them on the corner of Tahquitz and Alejo, and I’d be just as avidly trying to get people to follow you as if you were the late Coco Chanel herself.
But when you not only have an incredible heart, but it’s also partnered with true, radiant gifting...? I’m beside myself.
“Anything that is memorable for me usually stays or at leasts starts as the base of the song. If I write a melody line that I can’t remember 10 minutes into the session, it isn’t a good melody line.”- D.P.
When I first met Daniel, he made me coffee. That right there should be enough to make you love him, but for the sake of a healthy word count- allow me to elaborate.
I had the privilege of being in his presence, intently listening to his life, and stories for well over two hours.
As we got to know one another, this welling up inside of me knew: he is going places.
Sitting in his then room/studio, with instruments and speakers adorning the space, I smiled at the knowing of his talent.
A man and creative, truly marked with humility and kindness, with a vision and passion to make a difference...you can’t help but want to support him.
“...At age 11 I played on a Sunday at church for a “youth takeover” event where all of the youth in the church pretty much ran the service. That launched my love for leading worship and I have been doing that every week since. “- D.P.
As time went on, and the stories continued...the best thing happened...Emily came home. Oh honey, let me tell you, like a sun-ray greets your pillow in the morning, so this girl touches your heart when she smiles. After hugs, and nice-to-meet-you’s, she pulled up a chair and joined the company. In my observation of the two post-newly weds, here’s the thing I remember most: they laughed.
The golden ticket. I noticed their friendship. A true love and adoration for one another shown as they listened to each other's days, commented, joked, and engaged so thoughtfully as a team towards the conversation. I loved them in that moment, and am still anchored in that posture to this day.
So when I received a message in my inbox months later, that Daniel released his debut single, and he wanted me to write about it...I lost it. Bouncing up and down, squealing like a school girl, I raced to find the song, turned the volume up full-force, and pressed play.
After I listened to it enough times to stop shouting, “OH MY GOSH, OH MY GOSH, OH MY GOSH!”, I simmered down, and let the song fully impact me...
Let me paint you a picture.
You know when you fancy someone, and you get those little tingles in your soul? That smile for no reason, that extra giddy-up in your step, that relentless buzzing in your mind that wonders when you’ll see them next?
This song, I must confess, is the sound that personifies the sensation.
If you close your eyes and let yourself be taken away in the melodies of “Lovely Heart”, you’ll pleasantly wind up in the middle of a love story so pure, so intentional, so ...well... lovely.
“'Lovely Heart' came to me during an important time in mine and my fiancé’s (now wife) lives. I started with the line, “I love the way you do your hair, when you don’t really care, when you don’t even try...” and it all flowed from there. I pretty much knew instantly that this would be the song I would sing to my wife on our wedding day.”- D.P.
For me, as I listened to this song again and again, I felt as if I was being taken on a journey. From a sweet single man, sitting in his room, dreaming...writing this song about some girl he was madly in love with... to him being able to sing it to her on their wedding day... through the memories of life, good and bad... and ending in the stillness of his solitude once more, recalling his love, deeper still, and endless devotion to her. As you listen, you can feel the celebration of their hearts; the joy they have in finding one another. It’s simply contagious.
“I like to think people can connect with the words and melodies crafted into ‘Lovely Heart’; emotions and feelings that other people have felt too.”- D.P.
I’m a fan of making moments to behold treasures. I don’t like taking things for granted.
So before you go clicking and searching for this song, do me a favor sweet one... don’t just listen to this as you’re flipping through media or doing the dishes.
Pause. Gift yourself with a moment. It’s 3 minutes and 30 seconds of your 24 hours today. Let the melodious gift of someones creative heart develop a daydream in your mind, and even stir up your emotions. How does it make you feel? Does it bring back memories? Are you reminded of a love? Lost or current? Let the song do what it intended, and catch you up completely.
Allow someone’s lovely heart the permission to take your lovely heart on a journey.
Daniel, thank you for letting us in on your love story and life. You truly are so gifted.
I couldn’t believe in you more, and if I had some pom-poms, I’d surely be doing them justice for you, Emily, and the bright future ahead of you both.
You are an impeccable artist, an outstanding creative, and a tremendous friend…
And that’s not just because you made me coffee once.
“You are creative. You are unique. You have ideas. Never sell yourself short because someone doesn’t like what you have to bring to the table. Never stop creating. Refine your skills, and make them noticeably better than the creative you were yesterday. Support those around you on this journey of creativity. Collaboration over competition.”- D.P.
CONNECT AND FOLLOW DANIEL:
Daniel recently shot an acoustic video for "Lovely Heart", and wrapped up a Christmas EP that he will be releasing through his church (Champion Life) in the coming weeks. He is currently writing new material for several different projects and singles (including his second single- BE ON THE LOOK OUT!)
“The fact that people out there listen to the words and melodies I craft alone in my room blows my mind. Just keep listening, that’s all I ask. And if you like what you hear, tell everyone. My hope is that you experience hope through the words I sing and ultimately come to know Jesus’ vast love for you as a beautifully crafted person with a truly ‘Lovely Heart’.”-Daniel Paul