Rachael Lampa shares why she left the music industry, how she stays close to God amid her return

Singer Rachael Lampa shares about her return to the music industry after a career break in an interview with K-LOVE in October 2023.
Singer Rachael Lampa shares about her return to the music industry after a career break in an interview with K-LOVE in October 2023. | YouTube/K-LOVE

Contemporary Christian singer and songwriter Rachael Lampa, who rose to fame as a teenager in the early 2000s with the release of her debut album, Live for You, has opened up about why she left her music career behind in her early 20s and why she is returning to the industry now as a mother of two in her late 30s. 

The 38-year-old detailed how making music had always been a part of her identity from a young age in an interview with K-LOVE posted online this week. 

"I did this hardcore from the time I was 14 to about 21. And then, I left. I had no plan for when I was coming back. But, when I left, I was like, 'I have to be able to let this go because this is my whole identity. Everything is wrapped up in it. Everything is just this one big music-Jesus-people plump.' And it didn't feel right," Lampa explained.

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"But, it's not only that. It's like now that I am doing it again, I'm still letting it go. I think that those are the words that God has given me to stay in that place."  

According to her online biography, Lampa's rise to fame at an early age included multiple No. 1 hits, seven albums, TV appearances, and tours with some of the top mainstream and Christian artists. But at age 20, she walked away from her record deal amid "burnout" and a "sense of curiosity after spending most of her teen years on a tour bus."

"Over the next few years, the Colorado-native-turned-Nashvillian continued to release music independently, appeared on NBC's The Sing Off with other Nashville artists, and toured in a more 'out of the spotlight' way as a background singer with Jordin Sparks and later with Hozier," Lampa's website reads. 

During the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, Lampa began to "dream again" and "new music was born" from a conversation between friends at a Bible study. 

"I finally feel like I am making music out of a place of freedom, instead of striving," Lampa said in a statement on her website. "A lot of my identity was wrapped up in achievement and performance when I was younger. Now I just feel like I get to do it because I enjoy it and I get to make music about things I care about and love."

Last year, Lampa released the song "Perfectly Loved" featuring TobyMac, which finished the year on the Billboard year-end charts for "Hot Christian Music." Lampa said the song is inspired by "her inner-healing journey" and her work with a prison ministry nonprofit founded and run by her family called People Loving Nashville. 

In her interview with K-Love, Lampa said a theme upon her return that she has been living out is: "Letting it go."

"I'm also constantly letting it go. … That's been the survival, the theme. That's how I stay close to God because I'm like, 'this is scary.' You know, letting anything go is scary. But, it's also we're free to, you know, feel free. Yeah, there's trust, and there's freedom," she said. 

Identity should not be found in the things that a Christian does, according to Lampa. 

"Sometimes it's like: 'Lord, let me do this wrong.' Because then maybe somebody will be like, 'Oh, OK. It's OK to be wrong or to be clumsy or like not to have great answers.' … He wants us to do this with Him and with each other," Lampa said.  

"We are all just tripping over ourselves and over each other, and all He wants for us is to see his children be together." 

In an interview at the 45th annual ASCAP Christian Music Awards Monday, the singer said she has enjoyed being involved in the music industry again. 

"It's been really fun being back in front of people. … There's something that I've always loved about being on the road and being out there live. Because there's just something so rare that happens in a group of people that are all singing together and all there for one purpose," Lampa said. 

"There's science out there that talks about how when everybody sings together, their heart starts beating at the same time, their breath starts breathing at the same time. And I feel that, you know, when I'm up there. I feel the beautiful energy here, and yeah, so I think it's going be hard for me to step away [again]."

Nicole Alcindor is a reporter for The Christian Post. 

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