Dan, a freshman at USF, began singing only a few years ago and discovered that he could sing only by accident. A friend overhead him and urged him to sing to other friends. It was through positive feedback from friends, that Dan grew in confidence and began singing with the youth group at his church. He also tried out and made the elite choir at his High School. However, after one year being on both the choir and the wrestling team, Dan ultimately had to decide between the two and wrestling won out. While he competed at state level in both his junior and senior year, Dan decided not to wrestle in college. Instead he is focusing on school and this past summer and between classes this fall, Dan has come into the studio with his brother working on this original music CD.
In the first month working on this project, Dan came up with the second song on this CD, "In Heaven with Thee", his first hand at songwriting. When asked how he came to write both the melody and the first verse and chorus to this deeply spiritual song, Dan replied, "I remember one day, coming home from church, I went to the piano and just started playing a melody. I wanted a song to express how I was feeling- knowing I am nothing without God and how only He makes my life make sense. Just that thought gives me a kind of peace inside and for that moment I feel like I am in heaven with God. The words then wrote themselves in a matter of minutes. My mom seems to think I had a ghost writer (a Holy Ghost writer, as she says). Maybe that’s true, I don’t know, but what I do know is both the words and the song came together without a lot of thought or effort on my part. For that reason, I dedicate this song, 'In Heaven with Thee', solely to my creator, my savior, my God."
James, his older brother and co-producer of this CD, starting working on this project only a few months after surviving a heart attack.. So living each day to its fullest is not just a mantra, it has become James’ way of life. And what fills his day is music. The turning point for his music career was when he was given the opportunity to intern at Crystal Blue Sound Studios with Nick Pages where he has been learning the ins and outs of the music production industry and has now even expanded his knowledge into video editing. Crystal Blue Sound Studios is not only the place that has given James his start in the career of his dreams, it is also the place that brought two brothers together to create something pretty incredible. When asked what he wanted to do with his music, James responded, “I just want to be a part of something bigger than just me”. The Road to Salvation, his first completed project, may just be that something. As an added plus, it has also brought him closer to his younger brother, Dan.