One of the most powerful and impressive rises to popularity in recent years for Christian music is that of Francesca
Battistelli. Her poppy, peppy, happy and inspirational music and records is infectious to say the least. There’s also no way to deny that when you’re first two records of your career go to number 1 on the Christian charts, you’ve got something special going on.
Two years after her sophomore release, Hundred More Years, Battistelli has released If We’re Honest, one of the most lyrically mature and musically impressive releases of her career.
Battistelli took some time recently to talk to The Front Row Report about the new album and some of the ideas behind the music.
“It’s been two years and I’m so excited to get to share this new music and to play this new music on the road and I’m just
so excited. It’s just fun, it’s always fun to have something new to play,” says Battistelli. ‘I’m excited. This record is special and I can’t wait to finally share it.”
With both of her first records going to number 1 and her debut release receiving certified Gold, you’d think she’d have a hard time with expectations and would put some extra pressure on herself. It couldn’t be less the case, though.
“It really didn’t this time,” she says. “I was able to just set that aside and be excited to finally be in the studio and writing some new stuff and I’d just moved back to Nashville and started this new record in the summer and knowing I had time and didn’t have to rush, it was gonna be an easier process than the last one.
“It took all the pressure off. I just sorta let myself off the hook and you just have to make a record that you love and I did. I think you can tell, there’s a kind of carefree nature to this record sonically, it’s got a lot of energy, and it’s exciting.”
“It just came out, it’s where I’m at and there were no expectations that I put on myself of what the record should be and that’s what was on my heart and it’s always interesting looking back how a record reflects where you’re at in life and this one, I can already tell, reflects where I’ve been,” explains Battistelli.
“With Hundred More Years I was moving and pregnant and touring and trying to make a record and I love the album and
I’m so proud of it and wouldn’t have changed anything but I can just see there’s a lot of uncertainty and trusting God and ‘where are you taking me?’ on that record and….this one goes a little deeper.”
The lead single from If We’re Honest, “Write Your Story,” has been received well upon its release and with overwhelming acclaim from fans and critics and epitomizes everything Battistelli stands for.
“There’s a scripture I love, Jeremiah 29:11 ( For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to
prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.) That’s kinda been my life verse these last few years,” explains Battistelli. “I know God has been writing my story and it’s cool to look back and see- hindsight is 20/20- how I thought nothing was happening or he wasn’t moving- he’s always moving your story along, he’s always doing something and he’s still got the pen and I really wanted to write a song honoring that and encouraging others to…I feel like there’s a lot of pressure, especially for young people, especially who are Christians, to figure out God’s great calling in their life and figure out what his plans are and go make it happen.
“While I think it is important to seek Him and make good decisions and be wise with your time,” continues Battistelli, “I think he’s also just looking for willingness to go wherever he’s called us and have that humble heart to say ‘God, this is what I see for my future but I trust you and I want what you have for me’ and then hand him the pen and say ‘you write the story and I’ll go where you lead me.’”
Battistelli says a lot of the songs on If We’re Honest tie into the title track, which is about transparency and being real
with one another.
“I think the enemy has done a great job in the Church to keep us afraid of being real in sharing our struggles and sharing
our difficulties and even sharing the sin that we all deal with for fear of being judged, for fear of looking imperfect and the things we think will happen if we’re real and if we’re honest with each other,” elaborates Battistelli, “when in reality if we’re real and authentic and not afraid to share those struggles, I feel like that’s when healing comes up and grace down and that’s when a relationship can really grow closer and to the lord and in our walk.”
Francesca Battistelli talks If We\’re Honest and \”Write Your Story:\”