Interviews With Cornerstone '84 Artists

Cornerstone Magazine
Q1(?) 1984, Volume 12, Issue 69
© 1984 Jesus People USA
Page 40 (excerpted)

THIS JUNE CORNERSTONE '84 sponsored by Cornerstone magazine, will open as the Midwest's first major Christian music festival. In addition to featuring seminars by nationally recognized Christian leaders, the event boasts what festival coordinator Henry Huang believes is "the strongest musical line-up of any festival for people who really like contemporary Christian music."

Among some contemporary Christian music followers, Cornerstone '84 has been compared to England's Greenbelt music festival. But the emphasis of Cornerstone '84 will differ somewhat from that of Greenbelt, which has become primarily an arts festival with a Christian perspective, says Huang, who has been involved with the beginnings of both festivals. "We want our artists to be culturally relevant, but on the other hand we want to have a definite ministry element in all that we do. Our heart's desire and concern is for people's lives."

The upcoming festival is designed to be reflective of Cornerstone magazine in emphasis and approach. Citing the combination of ministry experience and contacts made through both the magazine and Resurrection Band, Huang notes Cornerstone is uniquely qualified to sponsor such an event. "One of the concerns for this festival was that it not only be a rewarding time for those attending but that it also be sensitive to the artistic and personal needs of the artists and speakers as well."

The next couple months will be very busy ones for Huang, the staff of Cornerstone, and indeed the entire community of Jesus People USA as they prepare for opening day. Right now the major push is for promotion, getting the word out on a festival which Huang believes will be a significant event in many people's lives this year, and, hopefully, years to come. We hope to make Cornerstone festivals an annual event," he says. "The tone is being set this year. Both musically and teaching-wise, it's going to be the highest quality we can put together."

Recently, we spoke with several of the artists appearing at Cornerstone '84. They talked about touring, new album projects, and many said they were looking forward to an event that promises to be, in the words of one artist, "more than just a get-together-and-clap-to-the music festival." Here is a brief sampler of those conversations.



My new album Meltdown is basically done along the same lines as the last one, going back to the same theme of hypocrisy. But I tried to pull myself more into this album as a whole because I don't like the idea of me just pointing the finger. In the song "Baby Doe," I was just as much to blame as the parents, because I wasn't doing anything about it.

A lot of people donated time to do a video of one of the songs on the album, so we got a thirty thousand dollar video for about ten thousand dollars. I really think this is one of the few thing I've done that I can walk away from and actually say, "Yeah, this turned out the way I wanted it to turn out." We picked the song "Meltdown" because, one, we thought it was one of the more commercial tunes and second--and maybe some people won't understand this--I wanted to do a song that I thought could get on something besides a television monitor in a Christian bookstore. So we did it with the idea of getting it on cable, and hopefully even something like MTV.

My record company asked for a separate version for the Christian bookstores though, one with a little bit less ... er ... gore. I don't want to get anyone up arms or anything, but the song has a lot of people melting. We've got one scene where there's a couple of heads, some arms and fingers and stuff, in a puddle of wax. It's an interesting thing to watch, but it never takes itself so seriously that it gets offensive. I hope not, anyway.