When David Willersdorf took his latest album Fire This Love on the road in support of The Salvation Army, the Waiting For Love tour took on special significance for the Sunshine Coast musician.
‘I’ve enjoyed seeing how my simple songs can connect the wider community with what The Salvation Army are doing,’ he tells Warcry. ‘I’m really glad I had the opportunity and the privilege of doing the tour for them.’
David, who came across the Salvos’ work when he was 18, was a youth worker in Sydney’s notorious Kings Cross.
‘One of the songs on my album, “Waiting For Love”, was written about the experiences I had back when I was a youth worker there,’ he shares.
‘I was working at a coffee shop that had been put together by a bunch of churches, including The Salvation Army. I was based there doing a lot of work with the street kids.
‘It was quite daunting for an 18-year- old—very eye-opening for me. And I’ve really taken a lot of lessons I’ve learnt about grace, hitting the road. They have definitely impacted my life and my music, and how I’ve continued to try to share that love with people throughout all corridors of life.’
David has experienced the height of success, having his songs performed by Hillsong, Grammy nominee Vernessa Mitchell and Grammy award-winner Bishop T.D. Jakes.
‘I’ve got an audience for those songs which goes far beyond people who know me. I really try not to take it for granted, but it’s surreal seeing some of the songs get recorded by such fascinating people,’ he shares.
Fire This Love signals a new direction for the accomplished musician. Recording it in Nashville with legendary producer Rick Price, it is his first mainstream album release.
‘I’ve had a real sense that God is basically the creator, and whenever I feel like I am being creative, I really feel like God is involved,’ he says.
‘Through Jesus, God has shown the most lavish act of love that humanity has ever seen. And that really impacts on my whole life, including music.’
For David, faith in God isn’t so much a religious experience, it is an innate part of his life, which he loves to express through helping others and performing his music. And whether he’s performing or watching a superstar make his songs their own, faith is ultimately what fuels his creative process.
Currently in pre-production for a new album to be recorded in March 2017, we can look forward to more poignant, truthful and moving songs from this singer.
‘Music is really one of my biggest areas of expression, so whether that’s writing a song about tough times or challenging situations or mountain-top experiences or great love stories, everything good in life shows that there is a designer, there is someone good who is behind it all,’ he says.
‘That’s what my faith leads me to write, irrespective of whether it’s a Gospel song or a song I sing in the pub.’