Josh Gauton: A Birmingham-based songsmith with the "Wild Love" radio hit

Tuesday 30th July 2019

Tony Cummings spoke at length to the singer/songwriter JOSH GAUTON whose 'O, Peace' album is receiving accolades

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Josh: "Kind of. That was definitely where I first experienced playing live. I really learnt guitar because I wanted to rock out with bands like Metallica and Rage Against The Machine. The first times playing live were in youth group settings."

Tony: What was the church where you started leading worship?

Josh: "It was called Barton Evangelical Church, just a small church in Canterbury, my home town. My parents had gone as students, then when we all moved back to Canterbury when I was one, they started going again. That was where I grew up, the community I was part of."

Tony: Was it a charismatic church?

Josh: "Not really. I don't know how you rank these things, but I'd say it's bang in the middle of the spectrum. It wasn't particularly charismatic, but we sang songs where people play guitar."

Tony: Why did you relocate?

Josh: "I spent half a year in South Africa working for a charity I got hooked up with, which was an amazing experience, and I went straight from there to university. I studied architecture in Sheffield. That was my thing for three years. Towards the end of my degree I wasn't sure whether I wanted to do that as a career or whether I wanted to pursue the music thing a bit more. I moved down to London after that to join this thing called Worship Central Worship Academy. I did the training year at Worship Central, based in South West London at HTB, and after that year stuck around. They offered me a job, so I was around doing a lot of media stuff, applying the skillset from my degree to the role - in terms of media, not architecture."

Tony: What kinds of things were you doing?

Josh: "I wasn't teaching. When I joined I was part of the team of musicians and worship team at HTB, and I was assisting the media at Worship Central, which in later years I took over, before finishing there. That was the role that I'd held for a few years - media/creative director type thing."

Josh Gauton: A Birmingham-based songsmith with the "Wild Love" radio hit

Tony: When did Worship Central move to the Midlands?

Josh: "My boss, Tim, who was at HTB at the time, he and his wife Rachel were planting this church, sent out from HTB, in 2015. Me and my wife, we got married in the July and moved to Birmingham in October to be part of that. I helped setting it up, and that's where we are now - still in Birmingham. We've entered the new stage of being a parent. We've got a little girl, six months old."

Tony: That's been a hugely successful church plant. Is it still growing in numbers?

Josh: "I believe so. It's had waves of new people come in. It does seem to have grown quickly. The structure was always playing catch-up. 'Gosh, we've grown again! We need to think about how we do this and that. We probably need to employ some new people.' It's been a cool ride, the last three and a half years, seeing how that's grown and for me and my wife playing a small role in that, on staff and volunteering, just giving what we've got to that."

Tony: Can one worship team handle all that?

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