Phillip Sandifer

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Phillip Sandifer
Phillip Sandifer, 2012.jpg
Phillip Sandifer photo from Simple Hymns cover shoot
Background information
Born1959 (age 60–61)
Baltimore, Maryland, United States
GenresAmericana/Country & Contemporary Christian
Occupation(s)Musician, music producer, writer, recording artist

Phillip Sandifer is an American writer, musician, recording artist and music producer.[1] His music is primarily known within the Americana and Contemporary Christian music field.

Personal life[edit]

Phillip Sandifer was born in Baltimore, Maryland on 10 March 1959 but moved to Dallas, Texas as a youth. He attended Highland Park High School, Auburn University (Auburn, Alabama) and the University of Texas at Austin where he received a degree in History. He holds master's degrees from Clemson University (Clemson, South Carolina) and Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary (South Hamilton, MA) and a Doctor of Ministry degree from Covenant Theological Seminary (St. Louis, MO). He has been married to Rene Burchard Sandifer since 1984. They have four children.

Music career[edit]

Sandifer began his music career in 1981, when he created an album on a minimal budget.[2][3] He has authored and performed 22 top 40 Adult Contemporary songs[4] and six #1 inspirational songs (as noted in CCM Magazine and The Christian Research Report) in the Christian Music field. Sandifer acknowledges that while financial gain may elude those choosing the route of the independent label there is a great deal of satisfaction in creating largely on one's own terms.[5] While not as visible as many artists, maintaining artistic control over his music has allowed for a career described as "constant" and music described as "consistent".[6] His releases have been distributed on Urgent Records (Austin, TX) through Sparrow Records (now known as EMI Christian Music)[7] followed by Benson Music Group[8] (now known as Provident-Integrity Distribution)[9] and Wider Sky through The Orchard (Sony Music Entertainment).[10]

Sandifer has recorded with such artists as Jennifer Warnes, Wendy Foy (Sierra), Billy Crockett, Bob Bennett and Michele Wagner and written music for Glen Campbell,[11] Fernando Ortega, Bob Bennett, Kim Hill, Cheri Keaggy, Rob Frazier, Dawn Smith Jordan (Miss South Carolina), Gary Powell and others. He has participated on recordings distributed by EMI, Disney, BMG Music and Warner Music Group although most of his solo recordings have been released on Urgent Records (Austin, TX), an independent label founded by Sandifer[2] in 1984, Selfless Music and more recently Wider Sky Music.


In 1998 Sandifer participated in Disney Records "A Bugs Life Sing Along" which was nominated for a Grammy Award in 1999. In 1999 he withdrew from the music industry in order to focus on expanding Christian radio's reach in the Austin, Texas metro area. In 2000 he joined a local church staff in order to participate in furthering the involvement of the contemporary arts in church settings. In 2004 he participated as a guest vocalist on his second Disney Recording – "Luv-A-Byes", recording the Kenny Loggins classic (and one of Phillip's favorites) "Return To Pooh Corner".

Between 1999 and 2005 Sandifer participated in launching four new radio stations broadcasting largely Christian music programming in the Austin, TX area. In addition, he launched a local community radio station (KDRP-LP, aka K-Drip) to serve his local community of Dripping Springs,TX. KDRP plays an eclectic mix of music including Texana flavored music and involves many local personalities.[12][13] Sandifer served as the Worship & Media Arts Pastor at The Lakeway Church in Lakeway, Texas until August of 2019 leaving to found The School Arts Project, a foundation dedicated to aiding public school fine arts programs obtain resources to help them achieve adequate funding.

In 2010–11 he renewed his writing and recording career releasing two new solo projects "Prone To Calamity" and "Expressions: Songs Of Worship" (an album of worship songs). Of "Prone To Calamity" Cross Rhythm's Phil Thomson noted "This has to be one of the best self-produced albums I have come across in many a year".[14] In January 2012 Sandifer released "Simple Hymns".[15] Of "Simple Hymns" Cross Rhythm's Tony Cummings noted Phillip's "warm, Dan Fogelberg-sounding voice and beautifully picked guitar". Cummings further regarded Sandifer's renditions of "Be Thou My Vision", "Blessed Assurance" and "Great Is Thy Faithfulness" as showing "the veteran to be one of the most underrated song interpreters around".[16] "Recently Played" was released in 2016 followed up with "Go On" in 2018 to the Country/Americana field. A new American/Alternative Country album "Driftwood 20" is due to release in March of 2020.

Discography (artist)[edit]

  • Never Steal The Show (1981) Urgent Records
  • On My Way (1984) Urgent Records
  • Keeping The Dream Alive (1986) Urgent Records
  • Constant (1988) Urgent Records
  • Christmas in Our Time with Bob Bennett, Billy Crockett, Wendy Foy (1989) Urgent Records
  • Phillip Sandifer (1989) Urgent Records
  • The Other Side of Salvation (1991) Urgent Records
  • Arizona Highway (1994) Urgent Records
  • Passages:The Fruits Of The Spirit (1994) Benson Music Group
  • Moon Circles – Santa Fe (1997) Urgent Records
  • A Bug's Life Sing-Along (1998) Disney Records
  • Sensible Enigmas (1999) Urgent Records
  • The Best Of Phillip Sandifer I (2001) Urgent Records
  • The Best Of Phillip Sandifer II (2004) Urgent Records
  • Luv-a-Byes (2006) Disney Records
  • Expressions:Songs Of Worship (2010) Selfless
  • Prone To Calamity (2011) Wider Sky
  • Simple Hymns (2012) Wider Sky
  • Of Songs and Sacraments (2014) Wider Sky
  • Recently Played (2015) Wider Sky
  • Go On (2018) Wider Sky

Discography (producer)[edit]

  • Keeping The Dream Alive (Phillip Sandifer) (1986) Urgent Records
  • The Urgency Of Praise (Various Artists) (1991) Urgent Records
  • Windows & Doors (Catherine King) (1991) Urgent Records
  • In A Welcome Field (Fernando Ortega) – Executive Producer* (1992) Urgent Records
  • The Urgency Of Praise II (Various Artists) (1993) Urgent Records
  • How Far (Dawn Smith Jordan) (1993) Heart & Soul Music
  • Arizona Highway (Phillip Sandifer) (1994) Urgent Records
  • Canopy (Dawn Smith Jordan) (1995) Heart & Soul Music
  • Unchained Heart (Linda Richards) (1996) Heart & Soul Music
  • Songs For The Heart & Soul (Various Artists) (1995) Heart & Soul Music
  • A Moment Alone (Dawn Smith Jordan) (1998) Heart & Soul Music
  • Sensible Enigmas (Phillip Sandifer) (1999) Urgent Records
  • Everyday Praise (Dawn Smith Jordan) (2001) Heart & Soul Music
  • Addison (Addison Hayes) (2002)
  • Expressions: Songs Of Worship (Phillip Sandifer) (2010) Selfless
  • This Far (Dawn Smith Jordan) (2011) Wider Sky
  • Prone To Calamity (Phillip Sandifer) (2011) Wider Sky
  • Simple Hymns (Phillip Sandifer) (2012) Wider Sky
  • Chasing Grace EP (Chasing Grace) (2012) Independent
  • Timeless Hymns (Dawn Smith Jordan) (2012) Wider Sky
  • It's Cool To Build A School (Various Artists) (2013) Wider Sky
  • Of Songs and Sacraments (Phillip Sandifer) (2014) Wider Sky
  • Recently Played (Phillip Sandifer) (2015) Wider Sky
  • Go On (Phillip Sandifer) (2018) Wider Sky


  1. ^ "Phillip Sandifer". NoiseTrade. Retrieved February 7, 2015.
  2. ^ a b Lindell, Chuck (August 29, 1992). "Urgent Does Things Differently". Austin American-Statesman via The Victoria Advocate.
  3. ^ "Explore Historical Newspaper Archives Online -". Retrieved February 10, 2015.
  4. ^ Hot Hits:AC Charts 1978–2001, by Jeffrey Lee Brothers
  5. ^ Paula Felps (March 24, 1999) "Telling The Story". Dallas Morning News
  6. ^ P.L. (September 1, 1988) Bookstore Journal "Evaluations Of Current Christian Recordings"
  7. ^ Billboard Magazine (October 19, 1985) "The Sparrow/Capital Alliance, Total Promotion May Prove Big Difference Second Time Around"
  8. ^ Billboard Bulletin (6/5/91)
  9. ^ Archived August 28, 2008, at the Wayback Machine
  10. ^ "The Orchard". Retrieved February 7, 2015.
  11. ^ "Hot Hits". Retrieved February 10, 2015.
  12. ^ "Austin News, Events, Restaurants, Music – The Austin Chronicle". Retrieved February 10, 2015.
  13. ^ KDRP Radio (
  14. ^ "Review: Prone To Calamity – Phillip Sandifer – Cross Rhythms". Retrieved February 10, 2015.
  15. ^ "Phillip Sandifer: Kansas-based singer, songwriter, producer and worship leader". Retrieved February 10, 2015.
  16. ^ "Review: Simple Hymns – Phillip Sandifer – Cross Rhythms". Retrieved February 10, 2015.

External links[edit]