Travis Cottrell

Travis Cottrell
Contemporary Christian music artist and worship leader

What hymn has most influenced you both personally and in ministry?

This is too hard of a question! Different hymns have come to mean different things to me in various seasons of life. Looking back, one that constantly pops back up as being important to me personally and in ministry is “Come Ye Sinners, Poor and Needy.” I love everything about this lyric. It kills me every time. Every verse is both challenging and encouraging. I also like the action and response that it requires in the chorus from the worshiper — “let’s arise and go to Jesus!”

Why is it important to train future worship pastors on how to integrate various styles of music for a “blended” service — inviting people of all ages and nationalities to come together to worship God?

When I began leading worship in my early 20s, I would have never in a million years guessed that I would still be leading different types and groups of people this many years later. And I would’ve never dreamed that I would’ve had to stand before so many age groups, denominations, ethnic cities nationalities. I think when we are young worship leaders, we tend to think more about the music. But the Lord turns our hearts as we grow, and we begin to realize that it’s less about the music and more about the people with whom he has entrusted us. We never know who the Lord is going to put before us to lead. We never know what people group he might put us in front of to help connect to God and worship. We have to be light on our feet and quick with our thinking, and ready to respond in every moment in the Spirit with an authenticity to which any people group can respond.

What is the best album you listened to in 2017?

I’m going to give you two. First, Tell All My Friends by Will Reagan and United Pursuit. This project impacted the way I worship, the way I lead, the way I write. I really love it. Let Them Fall in Love by CeCe Winans. I love a great female vocalist. I love great gospel music. I love passionate worship. This project is all three. I’ve never heard a record quite like this one.