Acclaimed singer / songwriter Chris Renzema released two songs last Friday (June 25) from his third full-length and second Centricity Music album, Get Out of the Way of Your Own Heart, which is set to release Sept. 3 and is available to preorder/add/save now HERE. The double-sided single includes both the title track and “Stronger Love (feat. Leeland),” each with lyrics that cut to the bone while singing about hope and echoing the universality of both pain and praise.
The progression to the new album began with more than 36 million audio streams of Renzema’s independent project, I’ll Be The Branches, that was a personal, but less autobiographical, worship album. This recording was followed by the sophomore, Centricity Music debut Let The Ground Rest that sparked more than 90 million streams and began to reveal more of his life story weaved into the songs. Receiving well-over one million Spotify track saves over the last year, a 2020 Pandora “Artist to Watch” nod and a GMA Dove Award nomination for “New Artist of the Year,” Get Out of the Way of Your Own Heart continues Renzema’s more personal trajectory.
“I feel like a lot of what I was struggling with over the last year-and-a-half was mostly about me standing in my own way,” shares Renzema. “In the song, ‘Get Out of the Way of Your Own Heart,’ the lyric of the bridge encourages, Take yourself down off the line, give yourself a little grace. A lot of this new album is me trying to express and process feeling a little subpar and trying to allow myself to feel OK and to be a little nicer to myself.”
Along with the title track, this unique thematic mix is apparent in “Stronger Love,” which was co-written by and features Leeland Mooring. “We wrote ‘Stronger Love’ when things were viscerally divided in our nation, with culture preaching that the solution was somewhere within ourselves. So the song became about having an anchor and a hope in something bigger than us,” relays Renzema.
“Honestly, a lot of the sounds and songs on this record are coming from a place of like, ‘man I wish I could be playing fun music again live’,” continues Renzema. “This new album is very much geared towards being played in concerts, sang along to, rocked out to.”
Like his desire for real connections, music fans are responding similarly, scarfing up tickets as Renzema gears up for his 29-city, 32 concert “Hope or Nostalgia” fall tour. With sell-outs already logged, the tour has added second shows in select markets as ticket sales for every concert are nearing capacity.
With Renzema’s groundswell continuing to organically build, he is on the road for the first time since his 2020 tour into well-known clubs across the country was virtually sold out before being cancelled due to the pandemic. Renzema is now rebooked into many of those same markets with some of the locations changing to larger venues to accommodate demand for tickets. Rebooked cities include Cleveland, Minneapolis, Milwaukee, Cincinnati and Nashville. The tour also travels to New York City, Houston, Dallas/Ft. Worth, Atlanta, Pittsburgh, Indianapolis, Tampa and more.
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