Friday, September 21, 2012

Retro SGM Radio: Jim Mahalick in 2007

Jim Mahalick: Sharing Hope
Following the National Quartet Convention in 2005, Jim Mahalick, five-year baritone for the popular Hoskins Family, made a decision that would change his life completely. He stepped away from the family group to walk a new path and to start a solo ministry. With the release of “New Hope Road”, Jim’s blend of Southern Gospel and Christian country is bringing a wide range of audience and an exciting new direction for this young artist. SGM Radio was able to catch up with him for a chat about this life-altering decision.

Pictured: Jim Mahalick performs with The Hoskins Family

Based in Chicago Illinois, Jim Mahalick was traveling full-time with the Hoskins as well as working in a studio at home. Jim explains, “ I was getting so busy in the studio that I had to do something. I decided this would be a good time [for a change]. I was getting married, so I would be able to go and do solo work and still have time to run my studio. So after a lot of prayer, I made the decision and stayed with the Hoskins until the end of December [2005]. Then in January I began work on a new solo project.”

The first release from the project, “New Hope Road” is “First Day in Heaven”, written by Jim. Scheduled for release in January 2007, this tune describes a little boy who passes from this life and goes to his reward. “You hear so many sad stories about children dying, this one is from Heaven’s point of view. He tells his Mom and Dad, ‘Don’t worry about me’, and talks about the exciting things he sees’.

Also starting in 2007, Mahalick plans to tour with a live band to bring the songs from “New Hope Road” to a growing number of appreciative listeners. It’s been a change for him to travel as a soloist. “When I was singing with the Hoskins Family, there were four people on stage and only a certain amount of time for each individual to minister. The Lord has been [developing] that area in my heart, the desire and ability to minister.”

Jim’s desire to reach the hearts of his audience with the love of Jesus is evident in his approach to his music and his graciousness with fans that stop by his booth. An air of authenticity pervades his music and his actions; his gentle manner and speech are a testament to his faith. As we discuss his career and music, Jim shares a dream he believes was from God, one that still fills him with awe.

“I was driving my truck along this rural road and I saw a row of trophies along the side. You know you usually see wreaths and flowers of where people died, only instead, these were large trophies. And on top of each trophy was a cross. And as I kept driving, I would see more and more and more. And as I came over a hill, I saw just a pile of trophies.”

”I believe the Lord was trying to show me that all these people we touch along the way… when we come to the end of the ‘road’ we will be able to look back and see the treasure that we have, we’ll know that what we did was worth it all. And that’s what I look forward to.” It’s not an easy life that Jim has chosen, but he says, “When you get on the stage, and you are ministering, and they are ministering to you, that’s what makes it worthwhile.”

Jim currently travels with his wife Danielle, a Virginia native, who he met at Crabbfest 2005. A sweet and gracious lady, Danielle has a full-time job in Chicago but is still able to go with Jim to his engagements. “That is so awesome. The Lord worked out a way that I would be able to do these things”, Jim says, “ And it is so awesome to be able to travel with my wife. I never knew what that meant until I experienced it, but that is such an incredible blessing.”

Jim’s dad pastors the Mahalick’s home church in Chicago and whenever the Mahalicks aren’t on the road, they are in a service and often Jim is singing. He stresses the importance of needing a home base where you can be spiritually fed. “That’s one of the mistakes people make [not attending church]. When you give and give, you need somewhere to receive. That’s one of the top priorities in my ministry, to be in church as often as I can.”

Prayer is also a top priority in Jim’s life in order to keep his relationship with the Lord strong and growing. “God knows our weaknesses, and it’s our job as individuals to know our weaknesses, and to know how much we need Him.” Jim feels the Lord has been talking to him a lot lately about recognizing his need for Him and being accountable to Him, both in life and ministry.

“I see that there are so many people, unfortunately a lot of young people, who don’t feel accountable to anything. They don’t believe in God, they don’t believe they need help with anything. And when you are in that state, that’s about the worst condition to be in, because when you aren’t accountable to anyone, you don’t have any fear. And I think it’s important to fear God, to have something to fear and something to be accountable to. It just makes me afraid for our country.”

”I wish there was something we could do…somehow we could make people realize there is a God and there is Someone we are accountable to. I pray for our younger generation. I went to a public school growing up and I saw a lot of things. I know there are people growing up in the next generation who are seeing things that even I never saw. I really pray for our young people. I want to see them have a deep experience with God to be able to withstand what Satan is throwing at them.”

Jim is finding that his music has a wide appeal and sees many young people attending his concerts. “A lot of young people that wouldn’t normally listen to Southern Gospel music come up to me after a concert and say, ‘I don’t really listen Southern Gospel, but I really like your singing’, which makes me feel good because I realize I made a good impression for Southern Gospel, because this is great music! There is not another music [style] in the world that talks directly to your heart more than Southern Gospel. It’s encouraging to see more young people enjoying this kind of music. As time goes on the music will change, but I hope we never lose sight of the vision. ”

As Jim Mahalick travels from church to church, sharing his style of Southern Gospel and message of hope, he is continuing this vision. His music is speaking to hearts of all ages and he is leading people to that experience with Christ that will bring lasting treasure.

For more information on Jim’s schedule and new project, “New Hope Road”, click on: .

SGM Radio Feature for January 2007 by Lorraine Walker

Jim Mahalick is back touring and has just released a new single, Expecting A Mountain. Check his website for current information!

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Watch for SGN Scoops October Edition for Exciting News on Jim Mahalick!

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