One of the privileges of writing stories for newspapers is the opportunity to interview celebrities. I’ve posted some of those stories here including Red Green from the Red Green Show and Bill and Gloria Gaither. Mark Lowry is another person I was thrilled to talk to via phone. He was on tour with a concert date in Fort Wayne Indiana. This is a condensed version of the story that appeared in the Fort Wayne News-Sentinel newspaper a few years ago.
With a reputation for poking fun at himself and his 500-mile-an-hour speech, a suave tenor voice, and quirky way of poking fun of things, including his former boss Christian music icon Bill Gaither, Mark Lowry has been at the top of the Christian music industry for more than two decades.
After graduating with a degree in youth ministry from Liberty University, Lowry felt God calling him to a music career. During the next few years, Lowry shared tales at concerts of the problems he had sitting still in church while growing up because of Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD). “I don’t look at ADD as a bad thing,” he told audiences. “I kind of like me. I can multi-task and totally know what I’m doing.” When people laughed, Lowry realized he was on to something.
In 1988, Lowry began touring the country as the baritone member of The Gaither Vocal Band, a position he remained at for 13 years. Clowning on stage with Bill Gaither became a part of the band’s concerts and audiences loved the pair.
When Bill and Gloria Gaither created the popular Homecoming videos and tours, Lowry’s effervescent personality seemed a natural fit. Mark has been featured in 100 of the Gaither Homecoming videos.
When it came time for Lowry’s “Mark Lowry on Broadway” video to be made, Bill Gaither helped out in a starring role.
After traveling with the Gaither Vocal Band for over a decade, Lowry chose to go solo. While he continued to regale audiences with stories about the problems he had while growing up with ADD, his emphasis was to convey the joy found in knowing Jesus Christ as Savior.
He also ventured into songwriting and composed a tune considered by many to be a Christmas music classic. In 1984 when Lowry was asked to write a Christmas play for his church, he came up with questions he wanted to ask Mary, the mother of Jesus. “Mary, Did You Know?” has been recorded by over 30 artists, including Natalie Cole, Donnie Osmond and Clay Aiken. Lowry recorded a Christmas album with “Mary, Did You Know?” featured on it.
Today, Lowry is back singing with the Gaithers. He considers his life a miracle. “I never thought I’d get this far,” he said. “I’ve walked through every door. It’s been an incredible trip.”