Always Believe, his latest CD, is a conscious departure from what he has done in the past. It has been a labor of love that is everything its name would indicate.
"This recording process was simple yet powerful. We tried to cut through the fluff and let the songs really speak", he says. "It took a ton of perseverance and was the most work i have ever put into a recording." Yet, he adds with a smile, "It was the most creative process I have ever been a part of."
For the first time McVicker sat in the producers chair co-producing the project with longtime friend and cohort Michael Aukofer. The studio used to record Always Believe was located in a dusty, rural Kansas farm town and, McVicker says, "the setting was perfect". "The only thing to focus on was the art and the message. After all, Wellington touts itself as the wheat capital of the world, so it all makes sense!" he laughs. "It's all a part of the journey."
His journey has taken him to 49 states and 6 countries, sharing nearly 1000 concerts. He has garnered multiple awards, including a Dove Award for "My Deliverer", a song a song co-written with the late Rich Mullins.
Yet, for McVicker it is not easy. While on the road, he does the driving, set up, and tear down that comes with each concert. At home, he books his tour schedule himself and handles the day-to-day workings of his vocation. But to him, it is worth it.
"I've heard it said that our calling is where our deepest joy and the world's greatest need meet. I know the last thing the world needs is another Christian musician," he muses. "But the world does need the truth. I love doing this, and I get to create and do what I can so that the truth can perhaps be exposed a bit more."
There has been no greater creative influence on McVicker's life than the aforementioned Rich Mullins. He spent years traveling, performing concerts, writing, and recording with the award-winning, chart-topping, countless-album-selling Mullins.
Then as the two were on their way to a concert, they were in a carwreck. The crash claimed the life of Mullins and left McVicker in critical condition. He suffered collapsed lungs, broken bones, was left in a coma, and hospitalized for 7 weeks. His recovery lasted years and the experience infuses everything that McVicker does to this day.
"I miss Rich a ton," he says. "Going through that scared me a lot. But, I am grateful that the faithfulness of Jesus persists when mine lacks. The Lord makes us, and often He seems to use that which is hard." He goes on, smiling wryly, "But most good things are hard, and most hard things are good. "
It is with this sentiment that McVicker continues his rigorous, hundred-concert-per-year tour schedule and carries with him th theme of his latest CD.
As he embarks on his Always Believe Tour, he echoes the CD's opening track, "15 Minutes" when he says "I can't worry about the weather. We are called to trust and believe regardless of the experiences we encounter. In life there is trouble; but in trouble, there is life.