From the early days of DC Talk to later becoming a seven-time Grammy Award winner, Kevin McKeehan continues to be at the top of his game. More popularly known as TobyMac, he is a superstar of Christian music and has never shied away from his faith. He is successful, well respected and for some people, hard to relate to. How do you relate to a celebrity?
In the recent months, TobyMac has shown just how human he really is. His life isn’t perfect and he’s a dad in mourning.
TobyMac’s world came crashing down last October when his son, Truett Foster McKeehan, suddenly passed away from cardiac arrest. He was just 21 years old.
“He was a magnetic son and brother and friend. If you met him you knew him, you remembered him,” McKeehan wrote in a statement at the time. “His smile, his laugh, the encouragement he offered with words or even without. He had an untamable grand personality and dreams to match. And he hated being put in a box.
“Truett always had a soft spot for God. The Bible moved him. His heart was warm to the things of his King. He was by no means a cookie-cutter Christian but give me a believer who fights to keep believing. Give me a broken man who recognizes his need for a Savior every time. That’s who Truett was and how he should be remembered.”
On January 10 TobyMac released a new song that is a tribute to Truett as well as a heartfelt description of the grief and mourning that he is going through at the loss of his son. The song is “21 Years” and it is a heartbreaker, but honestly, it is one of his best songs in recent years.
” ’21 years’ is a song I wrote about the recent passing of my firstborn son, Truett Foster McKeehan,” said TobyMac during “I loved him with all my heart. Until something in life hits you this hard, you never know how you will handle it. I am thankful that I have been surrounded by love, starting with God’s and extending to community near and far that have walked with us and carried us everyday. Writing this song felt like an honest confession of the questions, pain, anger, doubt, mercy and promise that describes the journey I’m probably only beginning. The rest is yet to come. One thing I know is that I am not alone. God didn’t promise us a life of no pain or even tragic death, but He did promise He would never leave us or forsake us. And I’m holding dearly to that promise for my son as well as myself.”
On the brighter side, TobyMac is facing his 17th Grammy Award nomination for The Elements for “Best Contemporary Christian Music Album.” He’s up against David Crowder, For KING & COUNTRY, Danny Gokey and Chris Tomlin. His fate will be revealed during the awards presentation airing on Sunday, January 26, 2020 on CBS.
TobyMac is also getting ready for his next 32-stop “Hits Deep Tour” which kicks off on Thursday, January 30 in Beaumont, Texas. Joining him on the tour will be Tauren Wells, Jordan Feliz, We Are Messengers, Ryan Stevenson, Aaron Cole, and Cochren & Co. More information can be found at TobyMac.com or AwakeningEvents.com.
I write about arts and entertainment in the greater Seattle area.