Sara Evans  ---  A New Perspective On Life

By Charles White

_________________________________________

 

Since breaking onto the country music scene in 1997, Sara Evans has excited fans and amazed critics with her own brand and style.  In the midst of her newfound success, however, she has remained true to and continues to find joy in what is most important to her: her family, her music and her faith in God.

 

Sara Evans grew up on a sleepy little tobacco farm in rural Missouri.  Says Evans, "Really all that I did as a teenager was work on the farm and play music and hang out with my friends.  I remember working hard and at the same time having fun, and I loved high school."  Sara began performing in her family's bluegrass band at the age of four.  She sang in and around her hometown until she was twenty, deciding then to try her hand (or her voice!) in Nashville, the country music capital.

 

In Nashville, Sara honed her musical skills in her free time while working as a waitress.  She was serving tables when she met her future husband, musician Craig Schelske, and she eventually joined his family band which opened for such legendary performers as Willie Nelson, Clay Walker and Tim McGraw.  In 1993, Craig and Sara married, and, after touring with the family group for three years, the couple moved back to Nashville to seek success on their own.

 

In 1996, all of Sara's hard work and perseverance paid off.  Thanks to the efforts of songwriting legend Harland Howard, Sara was offered a recording contract by RCA. She immediately recruited top talent to aid with her debut album. In 1997 she released Three Cords and the Truth which won her critical acclaim and secured for her a place among country music's rising stars. 

 

In the following year Sara attained greater popularity and her career skyrocketed.  In 1998, she released her sophomore effort, No Place that Far, the album that earned her a Gold Record and a nomination as Best New Country Artist by the Country Music Awards and Top New Female by the Academy of Country Music. Soon there were more nominations: for the Horizon Award and Vocal Event of the Year by the Country Music Association, for Collaborative Event of the Year by the TNN Music Awards for her work with Vince Gill, and for Country Video of the Year from the Music Video Awards.

 

1999 was also a very good year for Sara. Her previous successes earned her a spot on the commemorative album, Tammy Wynette Remembered as well as an appearance on the Country Music Television special, Girls Night Out, co-starring country music greats Martina McBride, Mindy McCready and Lorrie Morgan. Sara finished this incredible year by giving birth to her first child, Avery.

 

Sara views the birth of her son as the one of the most significant events of her life in many respects.  "Being a mother…is God's greatest blessing to any woman and it's an honor….  Children are such a gift from God."  Sara recalls that before Avery, she often found herself worrying and getting stressed about her career.  However, the birth of Sara's  son put everything back into perspective and helped her rearrange her priorities.  Sara found that as she focused on her family, her career really started to take off.

 

Even in her great success, Sara has never forgotten the people who have been there for her since the beginning: her family.  She continues to perform and work with many of them: her brother is her basest while two of her sisters and her sister-in-law added harmonies in her most recent album, Born To Fly.  "My husband and my family are the most important ones to me....  I see all this success as an opportunity to spend more time with my family and involve them with what I do." 

 

Amid ever-increasing accomplishments and accolades, Sara remains grounded not only through her family, but also through her faith in God. "Faith does not so much play a part in my life as it is the part and it is who I am….  Every morning when I wake up I say, 'Okay Lord, use me.'  I want everything I do in my career to be God's will.  I don't want to focus on myself, but rather to have  my whole persona be edifying and uplifting for people.  I want them to see God in me and see my joy in life.  I don't want anyone to think I am happy because I'm famous.  It comes from something else."

 

Sara offers this advice to young people:  "You have so much longer than you think. When you're a teenager you think that if you haven't done everything by the time you’re twenty then you’re a loser.  But the greater tragedy in life is to have to regret mistakes like losing your virginity too young, quitting school, or getting involved in stupid relationships that don't mean anything.  At thirty I feel the same way as when I was eighteen, only I'm glad to be thirty because I feel wiser and so much more confident." 

 

Sara Evans is living proof that fame, family, and faith do not have to be mutually exclusive.  Sara Evans was definitely born to fly, but she has never forgotten the nest from which she spread her wings, a nest she know was built for her by her family and God.

 

________________________________________________________

 

 

Person 2 Person met Sara Evans backstage at a recent George Strait Country Music Festival in Columbia, SC.  As always, Sara was joined for the event by her son, Avery.  Here, Sara is shown on stage.

 

 

Enjoy a few Real Audio clips from Sara's latest CD,

 Born to Fly:

Born To Fly    Let's Dance

 

Sara also has an awesome official website that we encourage you to check out:

www.saraevans.net