It was on this day in 1977 that contemporary Christian musician Matthew Joseph West was born in Downers Grove, Illinois. Although his first love was baseball and wanted to pursue a career with the sport, he ended up receiving a music scholarship for Millikin University in Decatur, Illinois. West released three independent records before he signed with Universal South Records which released his Dove Award-winning album, Happy in 2003. His first single, “More” stayed in the #1 spot of the Christian Adult Contemporary charts for nine weeks. It was that same year that West married his wife Emily. His second album, History, was released in 2006 but in 2007, West experienced what he called “some vocal fatigue.” Doctors at the Nashville Vanderbuilt Voice Center found some hemorrhaging due to some polyps which had to be removed and was prescribed two months of vocal rest. He wasn’t sure if he could ever sing again. A documentary titled Nothing to Say by Benjamin Eisner was created documenting the experience and was released in 2008. Matthew and Emily have two daughters and live in Nashville, Tennessee. His most recent album, Live Forever, was released in 2015.
Meadowlark Lemon is Born
On this day in 1932 the “Clown Prince of Basketball,” Meadowlark Lemon was born. Meadowlark is best known for his involvement with the Harlem Globetrotters in which he played more than 16,000 games over 26 seasons. He left the troupe to start his own comedic basketball team, Meadowlark Lemon’s Bucketeers (1980-83), the Shooting Stars (1984-1987), and today, Meadowlark Lemon’s Harlem All Stars™ (1988 – Present). In 1986 he became an ordained minister and hosted The Meadowlark Lemon Show on TBN for many years. Currently, Meadowlark serves as a guest chaplin for various NBA and NFL teams as well for the Army, Navy, Marines and Air Force.