Fair Trade Services artist and songwriter Hope Darst is thrilled to announce her debut album, titled Peace Be Still, will release Friday, August 21. Darst, a wife and a mother to two daughters, regularly leads worship at the Nashville-based church The Belonging Co.
“I’m blown away thinking about this right now,” said Darst. “I dreamed of being an artist for the first 25 years of my life and then laid that dream aside to pursue what God had called me to do - raise a family and serve the local church. I never imagined that so many years later, God would lead me back to my first dream of writing and releasing music as an artist."
Peace Be Still was produced by Jonathan Smith (Zach Williams, Phil Wickham, Passion) and Max Corwin. Featuring twelve songs all co-written by Darst, Peace Be Still is also the name of the album's first single, which Darst wrote in 2017 with Mia Fieldes and Andrew Holt, fellow worship leaders and songwriters at her church. The worship anthem, inspired by the trio's collective desire to overcome disappointment and fear, soon became an anthem of hope for their congregation, while churches around the globe also began to embrace its truth as their own. At press time, "Peace Be Still" has amassed more than 45 million digital streams and a radio airplay audience of more than 115 million between Darst's single as well as the extended live version from The Belonging Co's debut album, All The Earth.
While writing for the album, Darst openly shares, "I didn't know how to write songs as an artist. I learned how to write songs as a believer and a worship leader, so I only know how to write about what I'm walking through and actually experiencing. The songs that I feel are the most honest and that people have really resonated with have all been birthed out of actual things I've walked through in my own life. As a worship leader, I'm not just telling a story - I'm telling my story through the lens of the redemption of Jesus in every single one of those moments. My story just doesn't sit on the broken side of it, it actually tips over to where Jesus met me and is the Savior in every one of those moments. At the end of the day, I just want these songs to lead people back to Jesus, or to Jesus for the first time."
"Peace Be Still" impacted radio in late February and received early adds from major stations and continues to climb the charts. It is currently No. 7 on Billboard NCA, No. 6 on AC Monitored, No. 5 at AC-I on Billboard, and is playing on almost 100 stations in the U.S., including Sirius XM, KLOVE, and WayFM. Be sure to view the video below to find out more about the story behind the song. Additionally, this Thursday K-LOVE will exclusively premiere the official performance video of "Peace Be Still" on KLOVE.com and the station's social networks.
Now with an album she will soon share with the world and releasing it many years beyond what she initially dreamed, Darst exclaims, "What I’ve learned is that when we stay surrendered and keep saying ‘Yes’ to the season God puts in front of you, He writes an amazing story over our lives. Whatever you have in your life that might look finished or over, you have no idea what God could bring to life again.”