by Tracy Darlington
have come to realize that prayer IS powerful, and the truth sets
you free. So I pray as often as I think of it, and try to read the
word of God daily to keep reminding myself of what the truth is."
BIO: Fireflight, which self-released an album and EP before debuting nationally with 2006’s The Healing of Harms (Flicker), spent years as tireless road warriors on the concert circuit. While they are straightforward rockers, the Sunshine State band learned to ramp up its live show to play alongside heavier acts as well. “We push it as heavy as we can without being metal,” says guitarist Justin Cox, yet the band’s natural melodic touches helped Harms score Christian rock No.1s with “Waiting” and “You Decide” (also Top 10 at CHR). The band, rounded out by drummer Phee Shorb, skillfully used their road miles to inject more live energy into Harms, but by actually writing their latest album Unbreakable on tour, Fireflight found an even greater wellspring of inspiration.
Tracy: When did you know God was calling you to be in a band?
Dawn: I felt that God called me to sing when I was in high school, but I didn’t know in what capacity. When the band approached me after seeing me perform at a graduation ceremony, I saw it as an interesting opportunity. Shortly after starting up with the band, I felt like God spoke to me through a devotional, confirming that He was going to take our band out onto a worldwide stage to share His love with all people.
Your bio says the song "Unbreakable" is based on the classic gospel story of the adulteress set to be stoned. Can you explain?
When we wrote this song, I drew inspiration from the Biblical story about the woman caught in adultery. She was thrown at the feet of Jesus, and the religious leaders of the day were looking for Jesus to condemn her according to their laws. Instead, He asked each of them to punish her according to the level of their own perfection, and the leaders had nothing to say in response to that. I tried to think how she must have felt, to be turned free unpunished for what she was very guilty of. This song is about breaking free and going further and higher than you or anyone else ever expects. It’s about facing fear, and even facts, and becoming stronger than both.
How did God help you overcome some of the difficult situations you had in your childhood?
After my little brother died in a tragic drowning accident, for a long time I was very angry with God for “taking him away.” It took me awhile to decide if I even wanted to believe in God at all. Because it left me an only child, I took on the sole burden of trying to make my parents happy again. Over time, I became a big people-pleaser, striving for nothing less than perfection. When I accepted God’s gift in high school, I took my perfectionism attitude to a whole new level. I wasn’t just trying to be perfect in my parents and friends’ eyes, but now God’s too! For everyone who’s ever felt like a failure, you know what it’s like to feel like you’re working yourself beyond your limits and still falling short! Thankfully God began to wake me up and help me realize that I had completely discounted the sacrifice Jesus made so that I could be forgiven once and for all, and all of my “good” works amounted to a hill of beans, so long as I was counting on my own strength to achieve them. Since then, slowly, God has been revealing to me His Matchless Love. It’s through the empowerment of that Love that I am now beginning to become who I truly am.
What was it like living in a van together while you wrote this album?
Very Bad! H@H@! We were all stretched so thin from trying to do things out of our own strength that we were pretty much emotionally bankrupt. So, we just poured out the last bit of our strength into begging God to take over. We feel that the success of this album is because He did.
What is Fireflight’s mission?
To spread the Love of God through music to as many people as possible.
How does Unbreakable differ from The Healing of Harms?
They are both intense albums, however with Unbreakable we set out to focus on victory. We wanted people to know that not only could they be healed and forgiven, but that they could also conquer the pain of the past, and find power to live their lives as conquerors.
The song Unbreakable was used for the promos for the TV show “Bionic Woman.” How did that come about?
There is a team of awesome men and women working at our label to promote our music to TV, movies etc. They put the music in the right hands, and NBC decided that “Unbreakable” was just what they were looking for.
How long did it take you to record this project? Any fun stories about the process you could share?
It took about a month to record the album. We worked with our producer Rob Hawkins at a house studio in Nashville. There was a peach tree in the back yard and every once in a while we would all go out and the guys would try to hit the tree with the fallen peaches from the back porch of the house. They took one of the smashed peaches and got a close up and told everyone on a video blog that it was a shot of what the inside of my throat looked like, since I had been having so much vocal trouble. It was gross!
What message do you hope people will come away with when they listen to Unbreakable?
We hope that they will be energized and find new hope to break away from the things that have been keeping them from their full potential.
If you could say one thing to this generation what would you say?
I would tell them that God loves them and wants to talk.
What advice would you give to someone who is trying to reach their friends for Christ?
Being a Christian means you follow Christ, so work to treat people like He did.
Are there any steps you take to stay on track spiritually?
I have come to realize that prayer IS powerful, and the truth sets you free. So I pray as often as I think of it, and try to read the word of God daily to keep reminding myself of what the truth is.
If Jesus were coming back tomorrow, how would you spend today?
I would call those friends and family members who haven’t accepted Christ’s gift, and remind them how much I love them, and how much God loves them.
If Jesus were not coming back in your lifetime, would you do anything differently?
I hope not.
If you could have dinner with anyone living or dead, who would it be and what would you talk about?
King David. I would want to get to know him personally and see a glimpse of what made him “a man after God’s own heart.”
What’s the most memorable place Fireflight’s ever played?
I would say Germany is the most memorable place we have played. The people and the sights over there are unbelievable.
Is there anything else you’d like to share with TitleTrakk.com readers?
Come visit iamunbreakable.com and read the amazing stories of triumph shared
by our friends.
What are two things people might be surprised to know about you?
That I like to cook, and that I like to explore.
When you’re not singing, what do you enjoy doing?
Reading, and spending time with family.
What did you have for breakfast this morning?
A banana and some toast.
Three things always found in your refrigerator:
Milk, cheese, and yogurt—I love dairy.
You’re next in line at Starbucks. What are you ordering?
Cinnamon dulce latte! When it’s in season!
What’s left unchecked in your “goals for life” list?
Opening up for Aerosmith…
What’s currently in your CD player/iPod?
Skillet, Wavorly, Feist
Tracy Darlington is a freelance writer, and her work has appeared in Brio, Breakaway, YS, CCM Magazine, Insight, Susie Magazine, and other publications. She has interviewed countless Christian musicians including Rebecca St. James, Delirious, Newsboys, Leigh Nash, Barlowgirl, Krystal Meyers, Joy Williams, Pillar, Michelle Tumes, and many others. In her spare time she can be found riding horses or listening to music and sipping a Venti 3-shot sugar-free vanilla latte. Visit her online at her blog where she talks about Music, God, dogs and coffee. You can also look her up at Twitter and Facebook.