It has taken me some time to put words to paper on Jacob Moon’s incredibly personal performance here last week.
Some nights the words come to me immediately and I can’t get home fast enough to write them down. Other times, a performance sinks in over a matter of days before I find myself inspired by a certain song or moment that comes flooding back and everything takes shape.
For Jacob, it has been a slow realization that it is difficult for a hobby writer such as myself to feel equipped enough to do justice to an artist as accomplished as Jacob Moon.
The Serenity venue tends to host a lot of artists who are in the early years of their development. It truly is the venue’s heart and soul. Serenity owner Shirley de Vooght provides a home on the road and a well-paying gig for musicians craving anyone to hear their music. It is wonderful and it works.
So when someone like Jacob Moon plays here, who has been in the business for almost 20 years, played to thousands of people, and has met and played for the likes of icons such as Gordon Lightfoot, it feels different.
Although he has topped the charts as a contemporary Christian artist, his music crosses genres and envelopes the heart in a matter of minutes.
Watching him live you appreciate the years he has put into mastering the guitar, including the use of a loop pedal which is the new craze among young singer songwriters, whereas Jacob has been performing with one for almost 10 years.
Typically staying after a show to have a sit down conversation with the artist, on this particular evening I felt Jacob had already shared so much of himself with the audience, it seemed almost unfair to ask him to give any more. Not to mention that he performed for us following a delayed flight, a 4 hour drive in poor conditions, and merely 3 hours sleep the night before. Although he would have been more than gracious to answer anything I asked, something told me this piece was meant to be based on the pure experience of being an audience member. Because that is truly what I want to convey to the reader, so that people are encouraged to seek out independent artists, buy their music, and make plans to see a live show for themselves.
How can you describe a man who so openly shared the joys and sorrows of his life with a room full of strangers? A man who described the heartbreaking loss of discovering he and the love of his life could not have children of their own after years of trying. Who admitted to the pain of seeing pregnant women and babies, not understanding why they could yearn for something so deeply that they were not meant to experience. A man who then let us in to the long journey he and his wife embarked on, that started with a trip to meet their sponsor child Sara in El Salvador, who inspired them to adopt back home in Canada. A story that unveiled adopting a two year old boy in a situation so unbelievably magical it is too precious to attempt to retell here, followed by the adoption of his biological brother a year later, and if all goes according to plan, the boys’ biological sister will join their family in the coming months.
Among all of his stories and sharing, Jacob’s songs were performed as a way of weaving them all together to create a tapestry of his life, on full display, holding nothing back. I know artists tend to be vulnerable, but this was off the charts. At times there wasn’t a dry eye in the house, and in the next moment, we would be in an uproar of laughter.
Our crowd was treated to the most personal of songs like “End of the Road,” a touching ballad he wrote for his wife as she struggled through the heartbreak of infertility, to impressive covers from some of the greats like Paul Simon’s “Under African Skies.” Jacob was the perfect combination between the personal appeal of a folk singer/songwriter and the polish of a pop star.
A seasoned performer and class act above many, Jacob Moon deserves the high esteem in which he is held. Playing everything from stadiums, conferences, tribute concerts, and small intimate house shows like ours, he rises to the occasion in all formats.
Although his many awards, notable performances and highly acclaimed albums are impressive and worth noting, there is not enough room to mention them here, but this is the link to his Wikipedia page which does a fine job. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jacob_Moon
Above all else, Jacob Moon is a man who through every obstacle life has thrown at him, has never given up hope and never given up on his dreams, and in turn, he helped us all remember ours.
Jacob Moon performed at Serenity Performing Arts Centre on March 13, 2014.
Visit his website at http://www.jacobmoon.com for music downloads, tour dates, links to his facebook page, twitter feed, and more.
Check out Jacob’s extensive YouTube videos over the years on his YouTube channel http://www.youtube.com/user/jacobmoon