Take 5 with Dutton’s Logan Walter

Logan Walter, lead worshipper and songwriter for the worship band Dutton, is a diehard sports fan.  In fact, he tells me that because he’s been cursed by his “inability to hit a left-handed slider.” So instead of playing baseball in college, he pursued music.  But it was all in God’s plan.  Really. Because not only has Dutton led worship at David Crowder’s University Baptist Church (UBC) when the band was out of town, they also released their sophomore album, All Things Fade last year.

Logan took time out from watching his favorite Dallas-area sports teams to “Take 5” with Backseat Writer.  But I suspect, he still had the game on in the background.

I read that Dutton got its start as the worship band at David Crowder’s church, University Baptist Church (UBC) in Waco, TX.  How did the band come together at UBC?

David Crowder led worship for my Sunday night Bible study when I was in youth group at First Baptist Church of Woodway.  He knew that I was leading worship on Wednesday nights at Woodway, and he knew of my Dad’s band, Gabriel, from years past.  So, when my Dad asked if his son could tag along for a Crowder Band trip one summer, David thought that was a reasonable idea.  So I hopped in the Crowder band suburban (this was before the tour bus days) and observed everything Crowder did for one week.  From this experience, Crowder gained enough confidence in me to ask if I could lead in his absence at UBC.  I just needed to find musicians who could play with me.  From this need, Dutton was born.

The band released its second album, All Things Fade, last year.  Tell me, why did you choose to title the album, “All Things Fade”?

I grew up going to a church camp called “Sondays” with my youth group.  Chris Tomlin would lead every year, and the last summer that I went as a student, my youth minister brought out a new guy named Matt Chandler to preach.  When Tomlin introduced Chandler as “my favorite speaker in the world,” my ears perked up. The message came from Ecclesiastes and focused on the temporary nature of everything in this life. Nothing lasts. It will all be gone soon. And three generations from now, no one will remember who we are, not even our descendants (ecc 1:11).  For this reason, Matt challenged to dwell on our own death daily and pour everything we have into our eternal God.  This message never left me and inspired the title track to our album “All Things Fade.” Because when all things fade away, our God remains a light of hope in the darkest place.

Since you’re a worship band, a lot of your music is meant to be played live.  What are a couple of songs that are the most fun to play at a live show?

We have a rocking gospel & blues song called “Oh What a Joy,” which lends itself towards crowd participation. I have them repeat the title line “Oh what a joy” and throw their hands in their air like a gospel choir.  We also have a reggae song called “Joyful.”  Before we play it, I explain to the audience that reggae music is “all about the love,” then we all put our arms around each other and sing a love song to God.  At different points in the song, the crowd is repeating certain lines and waving their arms around like a bunch of undignified worshippers. It is good clean fun. This video shows us in crowd participation mode: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i92kLUKub30

What do you think is one of the most misunderstood concepts about worship?

Most worshippers today are not aware that one third of the Psalms are songs of lament. I can see how a non-church goer could walk into a Sunday morning service and, based on the songs we sing, think that everybody is always happy and oblivious to life’s trials.  We are called to cry out to God in our pain. On the cross, Jesus quoted Psalm 22:1, “My God, My God, why have you forsaken me?”  But even in the Psalms of lament, we find a sense of trust in God’s goodness. Psalm 69:29 says, “I am in pain and distress,” and just one verse later, the Psalmist says, “I will praise God’s name in song and glorify him with thanksgiving.”  This was the inspiration for our song “You are Good,” which says “You are good when blessings are falling all around me, good when troubles arise. You are good when I feel an overflow of mercy, good when my cup is dry.”

Who is the quirkiest member of Dutton and why? (Or maybe you’re all quirky…tell me why!!!)

Josh, our bass player, wins the band award for most quirks, and it’s not even close.  You should see this guy wash his hands.  You’d think he was preparing to perform surgery in every gas station bathroom.  Many nights, to compensate for the damage done by all that scrubbing, he falls asleep wearing lotion-filled gloves.  I’m not kidding, but it should be noted that Josh puts even more dedication into his bass playing, which has lifted him to a studio musician level of professionalism.

For more information on Dutton, visit the band online at duttonband.com. You can also fan the band on Facebook (facebook.com/duttonband) and follow their adventures on Twitter (twitter.com/duttonband).

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