Jason Upton (born December 15, 1973) is an American Christian singer-songwriter, musician, recording artist and composer. His musical creations are mostly Christian worship songs inspired by folk music. Jason Upton is evolving on the margins of the Christian music industry through his own record label Key of David Ministries. However, some of his music has been distributed by major Christian labels such as Sparrow Records (EMI), Gotee Records and Integrity Music.
His multiple tours around the world, his appearances at services in Lou Engle's movement The Call and on CBN's 700 Club talk show made him known by the American public as well as internationally. His music is mostly covered by Christian media such as Relevant Magazine,Crosswalk,Christianity Today and Cross Rhythms.
1 Early life,
2 Events and tours,
3 Musical career,
6 Popular culture,
8 External links,
Jason Upton was born on December 15, 1973 in Minneapolis and was adopted by a Christian family in March 1974. He has Native American roots since his biological father was a Cherokee.
Events and tours:
Jason Upton regularly tours in the United States, Canada, Europe and South America, leading worship in churches and at conferences, including Onething. He has rarely appeared on television, although he has appeared at least twice on the 700 Club. He is not regularly played on mainstream Christian radio. During worship services he not only plays the piano or keyboard, or acts as the lead vocalist, he also teaches and encourages the congregation.
Upton released his first CD, Key of David, in 2000. It was recorded live in Virginia Beach that year and was produced by Upton's own Key of David Ministries. Over half of the album consists of unrehearsed, spontaneous songs and declarations. Later in 2000, Jason appeared at a National Day of Prayer and Fasting event called 'The Call D.C.'
On August 14, 2001, Jason released his second album Faith, which was also recorded live. Post-production work gave the album a high-quality smooth sound. It was his first on a professional recording, and was released on 40 Records. The title track "Faith" was a spontaneous track, an unplanned song which Jason referred to in the liner notes of the album as a 'Spirit Song'. While it differed from Key of David, the album was well received.
In 2002, he released two independent CDs that were his first to have been recorded in the studio, at Dark Horse Studios in Nashville, Tennessee. Jacob's Dream contained songs that were more introspective and meditative in nature than his previous works. Dying Star was a larger project and concentrated more on destruction of personal pride and complete submission to what Upton sees as God's plan and not what the mainstream church envisions. That same year, he collaborated with other Christian artists on a Keith Green tribute entitled Your Love Broke Through: The Worship Songs of Keith Green. He re-recorded "You Are The One" for this project, further exposing him to mainstream Christian audiences. He also led worship at The Call New York that year.
In 2003, Upton launched another independent CD, Remember, which was recorded live and was a compilation of two nights of worship. On the first track, he is heard rebuking a tornado which was tearing through Oklahoma City at the time and was headed directly towards the building that he was worshiping in. Some say the tornado broke apart at the moment Jason spoke against it. On the last track, on a song called "Fly", an unknown, high-pitched voice can be heard. Jason has credited this 'mystery voice' to an angel. Upton has also reported that a child present at that service claims to have seen an angel on the platform. The sound was cleaned up a little before the tracks were released. Also that year, Jason led worship at The Call Kansas City and appeared at the Onething Conference for the International House of Prayer. This further popularized him among Christian youth.
2004 passed with Jason continuing to tour, and it was early December before he released his sixth CD Trusting the Angels, a studio album which was also independently produced. This album was also recorded at Dark Horse Studios in Nashville. This CD was different from his previous albums in that no track seemed to be spontaneous.
In April 2005, Jason released his second album on a recording label which was produced by Gotee Records. Great River Road was a studio album and a collection of Jason Upton songs, containing five songs from his previous CDs and only four new compositions. It also included a bonus track "You Are The One", which had been recorded for the earlier Keith Green tribute. This album further included a CD-ROM feature of Jason explaining his inspirations for and reasonings behind the songs on the CD.
Jason's fourth live album, sixth independent album, and eighth overall album, Open Up The Earth was released in late October 2005 and is partly recorded in Holland. It contains two CDs of mostly spontaneous worship, and a bonus DVD. It contained no post-production and is raw, unedited worship. This was Key of David Ministries' largest project to date and has been well received by many of his supporters.