Mark Hall (musician)
Mark Hall in 2011 at the 'Come to the Well' Tour
|Birth name||John Mark Hall|
September 14, 1969 |
Henry County, Georgia, U.S.
|Origin||Daytona Beach, Florida, U.S.|
|Occupation(s)||Singer, composer, pastor|
|Labels||Sony BMG/Beach Street/Reunion|
|Associated acts||Casting Crowns, Hannah Kerr|
John Mark Hall (born September 14, 1969) is the lead vocalist for the Georgia-based contemporary Christian music group Casting Crowns, a seven-member group composed of worship leaders and Mark himself is a youth pastor also.
Hall was diagnosed with learning disabilities as a child, including attention deficit disorder just before third grade.[clarification needed] He also was diagnosed with dyslexia.[clarification needed] Mark defines himself as "a broken person made whole". He talks about his trials in his book Lifestories.
Hall served as youth pastor to the First Baptist Church of Samson, Alabama and other churches while pursuing a music degree at the Baptist College of Florida. Upon earning his degree, Mark and his wife Melanie moved to Loganville, Georgia, where he served as the Minister of Music and Students at Center Hill Baptist Church. In each church he started a youth band as a way to involve students in a ministry that would allow them to use their musical talents and interests. Hall would continue this practice during his tenure at the First Baptist Church of Daytona Beach, Florida.
The Beginning of Casting Crowns
Casting Crowns began as the student worship band that Hall formed while he was serving at First Baptist Daytona Beach in 1999. As in previous churches, Mark was the lead singer and songwriter; other members would go on to write songs for the group as well. Other members at that time included: Juan DeVevo (guitar), Melodee DeVevo (vocals and violin), Hector Cervantes (guitar), and Darren Hughes (production manager).
Return to Georgia
After two years of service in Florida, Mark Hall and Casting Crowns moved to Eagle's Landing First Baptist Church in McDonough, Georgia. Almost immediately upon arriving, two others joined the band – Chris Huffman (bass guitar), and Megan Garrett (keyboard, vocals, accordion). A year later, Andy Williams joined, completing Casting Crowns.
The band recorded four studio records and three live records that were mainly distributed in the Atlanta area and received much praise. "There was the temptation to send our CDs to record companies," Hall says, "but we prayed about it and came to the realization we needed to keep doing our music our way."
Mark and the rest of the band say they had no desire to get into the music business. Mark was focused as a youth pastor and felt that that was where God wanted him to be.
In 2003, Casting Crowns debuted their self-titled album, full of an edgy-pop sound and rich, heart-felt lyrics, with Miller and Chapman serving as co-producers. Their first single, "If We Are The Body", which challenges Christians in the church to truly look at the needs of people around them, took off fast and set the group on a whirlwind of activity. He received e-mails from pastors and their wives telling them of the impact their song was having in their youth group and with their students.
Hall's fundamental message is: "I want to shake people up and help them see that Jesus is not a religion, and God is not a book," Hall says. "You can't pray to a book and you can't draw strength from an idea or standard. If there's no relationship with Jesus as a person to you, you're in trouble. It's about life, not religion. It's about relationships, not books."
Melanie, Hall's wife of 19 years, became the band's tour manager. Mark affectionately refers to her as "the other half of my brain."
Mark Hall received several Dove Award nominations at the 36th GMA Dove Awards. In 2007, Hall was nominated to a Dove Award for Male Vocalist of the Year at the 38th GMA Dove Awards. The Casting Crowns song "Praise You in This Storm", written by Hall, was also nominated for Song of the Year.
The next year, Hall collected five trophies at the 2008 39th GMA Dove Awards.[not in citation given] Hall, who was that night's leading nominee with six, won Song of the Year and Pop/Contemporary Recorded Song of the Year for "East to West", which he co-wrote with Kevin Herms.
His participation on the multi-artist worship project Glory Revealed brought Hall individual honors for Special Event Album of the Year for the CD, as well as Inspirational Recorded Song of the Year for "By His Wounds".
His band also had four nominations and won three: Group of the Year, Pop/Contemporary Album of the Year for The Altar and the Door and Pop/Contemporary Recorded Song of the Year for "East to West".
- Casting Crowns (2003)
- Live from Atlanta (double disc with live CD and live DVD) (2004)
- Lifesong (2005)
- Lifesong Live (double disc with CD and DVD) (2006)
- Casting Crowns Gift Edition (re-release of 2003's Casting Crowns with bonus music videos, live footage, etc. on a bonus DVD) (2007)
- The Altar and the Door (August 28, 2007)
- The Altar and the Door Live (double disc with CD and DVD) (2008)
- Peace on Earth (2008)
- Until the Whole World Hears (November 17, 2009)
- Until the Whole World Hears Live (August, 2010)
- Come to the Well (2011)
- Thrive (2014)
- The Very Next Thing (2016)
- Who But You (Abraham & Sarah) - with Megan Garrett, Music Inspired by the Story (EMI Christian Music 2011)
- Lifestories: Finding God's Voice of Truth Through Everyday Life (2006) Brentwood Music Inc., Mark Hall and Rev. Tim Luke ISBN 1558970088
- Your own Jesus: A God Insistent on Making it Personal (2009) Zondervan, Mark Hall and Rev. Tim Luke ISBN 0310293324
- The Well: Why are so Many Still Thirsty? (2011) Zondervan, Mark Hall ISBN 0310293332
- Hall, John Mark. "Songwriter/Composer: HALL JOHN MARK". Broadcast Music, Inc. (BMI). Retrieved April 25, 2015.
- Eide, Fernette (14 February 2016). "Dyslexia and Casting Crowns Mark Hall Singer Songwriter". Dyslexic Advantage.
- Price, Deborah Evans (September 10, 2015). "Black River Entertainment Launching New Christian Label: Exclusive". Billboard. Retrieved January 16, 2016.
- Evans Price, Deborah (September 20, 2016). "Casting Crowns on First Album Since Recovery: 'I Didn't Want to Write the Post-Cancer Record'". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved October 7, 2016.