Third Culture Worship
Worship Leader Magazine Review: 'This is an energetic and passion-filled CD that glorifies God with timeless vocals and instrumentation that should set the standard in contemporary and popular culture.' Vaughn Thompson Jr. is a worship leader and singer/songwriter based in San Jose, California. Third Culture Worship is a blaze of energy and jumps out at you from the very first track. 'You are Exalted' has an amazing live feel that is woven throughout the album. Even ballads like 'Son of God' and 'The Question' have a timeless presence that at first reminds you of Israel Houghton, but then Vaughn's uniqueness and passion have you pressing in for more. 'How Great Is Your Love' is both melodic and blends contemporary worship with traditional reverence that is inspirational and devotional. The background vocals go a long way and rounds out this fine releease, especially the women. Most evident on the final track, Paul Baloche's 'Open the Eyes/You are Holy' medley with Claude Deuce. The balance of energy and ballads, of praise and worship, makes Third Culture Worship help display the many textures of our amazing God. From the heart of a local minister comes an outstanding find for worship leaders and worshipers alike. VAUGHN THOMPSON JR./THIRD CULTURE WORSHIP BACKGROUND INFO Vaughn Thompson Jr. currently serves as worship pastor of Cathedral of Faith, a multi-site/multi-cultural, 7000 member church in San Jose. Add that to six years of leading and overseeing a network of churches for NewSong and Vaughn has some in- the-trenches experience. He also has a rich personal history and theological background. Born of an Asian (Korean) mother and Caucasian (German) father, he struggled with a sense of personal identity: "I never fully identified with any one culture and spent most of my youth feeling confused and at times resentful of my mixed heritage. It was a painful journey but one that has led me to find that my true identity is in God and not culture." With a degree in Pastoral Ministry from Lee University and a MAT with an emphasis on worship from Fuller Theological Seminary converging with his obvious musical giftedness, cultural history and academic training and far reaching vision, he represents the music of Third Culture, a music that draws from many genres, peoples and nations, and graces those who are culturally adrift with Jesus, who provides identity, belonging and home. "Jesus is Third Culture" and we as Christians are, as well-raised in an alien culture. SOUNDS LIKE Smooth pop converges with r&b/soul/gospel/spoken word-replete with dynamic range, musical changeup on alternately reflective and energetic worship. CeCe Winans meets an updated Terry MacAlmon. Vaughn knows how to shake it up and pack in the joy and how to lay back and create holy space. With horns, tight harmonies, lyrical and musical hooks, Vaughn's congregational worship is part rhythmic romp and part deep well of transparent confession and theological truth. Vaughn will bring you to your feet and send you to your knees, issuing an invitation to take your place in Third Culture. More: Vaughn and his wife Irene (also a gifted worship leader) make up Third Culture Worship (the group) and have just finished and released their eponymous first full-length CD. The opening track "You Are Exalted" is featured on Song DISCovery 92. This year Vaughn helped develop the School of Worship (SOW) at Cathedral of Faith, created to "help young leaders develop a sound Biblical Theology of worship and the musical skills to assist them in leading congregational worship."