Faith, Love and Bars

Nadiyah Wilmore

“Love is real to me” was the first of many lines that excited the young songwriters..

Nadiyah Wilmore sat among other gospel artists, strangers who went from introducing themselves to “throwing around ideas, making up a song.” It only took thirty minutes for them to create a melody that Nadiyah feels connected the artists to each other and to God.

These musicians connected in Macon, Georgia at the Otis Music Camp for high schoolers, where young performers explore songwriting and hone their craft under the guidance of music coaches.

In her first few hours, she found herself in a room with people from all over, brought together by gospel.

At first, Nadiyah felt nervous, intimidated by new faces and voices.

“We had new campers and new coaches,” she said, “and we don’t open up to people we don’t know.”

After ten minutes, this freshly formed group was conversing about faith. They felt inspired to give their song a strong message since “we all knew that we were close to God.”

As the group members grew more excited, the conversation turned to love. A new voice shared, “Love is real to me.” This powerful phrase, what Nadiyah calls a “bar,” elicited a reaction from everyone is the room, especially her.

Where’d that come from?” she asked. The brainstorming continued. The gospel enthusiasts started “tossing bars” about love, including Nadiyah, who sings, “Many don’t know that it comes from above.”

“We were just joking around and playing,” she said, “but we finally got the chorus.” The group was able to record soon after their first meeting.”

Nadiyah especially loves the song’s message. “There is a reason,” she said, “and we know that God is working for us.”

During her solo, when she sings the word “above,” her light soprano voice shoots straight up the music scale. It climbs higher and closer to where she wants this song to go.

Nadiyah Wilmore, Macon Georgia