At The Extra Mile
I’m at The Extra Mile event today. Unless I can find an Internet connection, posting may be light.
Update (7:54 AM): I’m at the hotel overlooking the convention center. Still not sure what level of connection I’ll have, or how much I’ll have the chance to post throughout the day. But whether I post today or later, it’s looking to be a great day!
Update (9:49 AM): About 100 people are here. The Talley Trio is planning to kick the event off with a few songs, and then Lauren will speak.
Update (11:15 AM): The day began with Debra starting the event in prayer. After a song by the Talley Trio and a solo song by Lauren, Lauren began her session. She shared the story that gave birth to the Songs in the Night book and CD. About two years ago, she went through an illness that had her largely confined to her bed or the couch for about three months. During that time, she sought God as to why she had to go through that trial. The book draws from the Bible study she did during those months; the CD is of the songs that carried her through that time. During this session, she shared the first Bible study from the book, on Psalm 77. She finished up the session by singing “Songs in the Night” and “The Extra Mile.”
Update (2:01 PM): About a half-hour ago, Roger Talley got a little bored waiting for the 2 PM session to start. Since at least 2/3 of attendees were sitting waiting for the session to start, he went up, played a piano solo, and then led audience sing-a-longs. He called up two people from the audience–they sang “Old Rugged Cross” and “Oh For a Thousand Tongues” (Nelons)–and both did excellent jobs. At this point, a local group, Voices of Mercy, is opening for Debra’s session. It’s a female trio, and possibly the best local group I’ve heard.
Update (3:51 PM): Debra Talley is wrapping up her session. I knew she was the sort to have in-depth thoughts and commentary, but I hadn’t realized how good a speaker she was. She has gotten more laughs in an hour and a half than I think I got in five hour-long sessions combined (and probably more tears than I’ve ever prompted when speaking).
There is a Lauren Talley solo concert and a Talley Trio group concert coming this evening, but due to a long drive afterwards I probably won’t be able to post much about it.
Update (6:30): Roger Talley just told me that he had noticed some of the curiosity about the size the event would be, despite the relatively small amount of publicity / notice. He said there were 113 paying attendees, besides a number of support staff / label personnel.
Update (7:49): I was right. A few days ago, I heard the studio cut of Lauren Talley’s arrangement of “In Christ Alone.” I posted my instant rendition on Facebook: “Wow. The standing ovation sort of wow.” I was right. Lauren just introduced and sang the song, and the place came unglued.