HONG KONG- Krystal Meyers, an upcoming Christian rock artist from the United States, held her first live concert in Hong Kong. Favoring to sing in the punk rock style, Meyer often advocates anti-conformity to secular culture.
When she broke out onto the music scene in 2005, she was just 16 years of age. Since then, Meyers is gaining popularity in both the US secular and Christian music industry.
She has also found an unlikely loyal following in Japan, where her first number one single "Anti-Conformity" became a sensation in the predominantly non-Christian nation. She made three trips to Japan so far.
Late last year, Meyers released her second album "Dying for A Heart," which was another anti-conformity theme project.
In this interview held shortly before her performance at the International Christian Assembly in North Point, Meyers shared about how God spoke through her music to listeners of diverse cultural background.
She lastly encouraged everyone resist the conforming to expectations from the secular world, and to live according to God's will.
K: Krystal Meyers; GH: Gospel Herald reporter
GH: What brings you to Hong Kong?
K: Pretty much the show and stuff. I am really excited to be here. I really like it.
GH: Is there anything else you be doing besides holding a concert?
K: We're going to be doing some interviews. Then, we're going to do some exploring.
GH: So, you will be seeing the sites.
GH: When are you planning to leave?
K: On Saturday.
GH: In 2006, you've managed to beat several top singers/bands including the Red Hot Chili Peppers to receiving your first number one single in Japan. How did you do it?
K: I don't know. I guess I got to go over and be part of the BMG and roster in Japan last year. In March, they did a major promotion and everyone really liked [my] music. I think it was about June, the song became a big hit. It was just really, really cool. I didn't do it. It was just totally the Lord.
GH: Correct me if I am wrong. The song "Anti-conformity" was the hit.
GH: Will you tell me what inspired you to write this song?
K: I wrote the first version of it when I turned 14 and was moving onto 9th grade. I always saw that it was important for you to be the person God created you to be and not be whatever everyone else wants you to be. When I started high school, I really learned how to stand up for my faith.
I don't know how it is here, but in America you have your teenage years. Going to high school, [peers] is experimenting with drinking and drugs. I just knew that was not what I was called to do. It's not something the Lord agrees with. I had a lot of friend who did it. I knew that I needed to stand up to that pressure. I did, and I had respect for it. I just wanted to write "Anti-conformity, "and express what is not conformity.
GH: How did this song manage to find some meaning with your listeners in Japan?
K: I don't know. Actually, it is all [from] God. I am a mainstream artist there, but there are a hundred million people, and only a few are Christian. The Lord somehow surpassed the language barrier and was able to use [the song] to help people. It was really cool.
GH: You've been to Japan three times now. So, you've been to Asia a lot. What made you decide to make your first trip there?
K: The label over there just wanted me to come over to do some promotions. [Since then]they brought me over there so many times. I really enjoyed Japan.
GH: Hong Kong culture is predominantly Chinese-influenced. Japan's culture is predominantly Japanese-influenced. With this in mind, how are you going to approach the Hong Kong audience?
K: I think I would approach it like how I would approach anyone. I just want to put on a great show and give God all the glory. I want everyone to have fun.
GH: How do you manage to balance keeping your faith while working in a secular environment?
K: I think it is about keeping your experience with the Lord. I think that you [need] to be in devotion with the Lord and keep that as a big thing, and really focus on having a relationship instead of just saying hi. Then, I think you will know what is going over the line and what is okay to do.
You know what it really means to be with the Lord.
GH: Do you always pray before you perform?
K: We do. That's really important to me. I feel really lost if I don't pray before I go onstage.
GH: What do you pray for usually?
K: I pray for the audience to have open hearts and open minds. And for us to not have big heads when we go up onstage and remember that it is the Lord who is doing all this. Just, thank God for opportunity wherever we play. I've played so many shows and I am thankful for every single one of them.
I feel like I didn't really do my best job, but I feel that God is still working amongst the craziness and He can still be able to shine through.
GH: Have you been able to engage in much dialogue with the local Christians?
K: I haven't been able to, yet. I have done a lot of interviews. Hopefully, we'll have time. I had a meeting with some kids at some university.
GH: Which university?
K: Hong Kong Baptist University. That was very cool. Everyone has been really awesome.
GH: Will you be in the liberty to reveal which songs you will be performing this evening?
K: Yea, I will be performing primary [songs] from "Dying With a Heart." But we'll perform [newer] stuff like two songs no one has even heard of before.
GH: Will you also include the old favorite, "Anti-conformity?"
K: Yes, we'll open up the set with that.
GH: In general, what message do you want to leave for Hong Kong?
K: I think probably anti-conformity and being able to go after your dreams. And [following] what God has called you to do. Brush aside what everyone else wants you to do. Follow what God has asked you to do.
GH: Do you expect your songs to makes as much of an impact in Hong Kong as they had in Japan?
K: You know, I have no clue. I didn't know that God planned to do what He did in Japan. I never expected to go out of the country. And that has been probably been one of the biggest blessing in my entire career. Just to know I can go over there [in Japan], and be a blessing. It is awesome to see what God does.
I have no clue. I don't know if that is what God is planning to do. I hope so. I would love to make an impact like that here.
GH: Your last music video was "Hallelujah." Will you be performing it live tonight?
K: No. That was released for Japan. That was not actually released anywhere else. I would love to [perform] it eventually.
GH: Do you plan to return to Hong Kong anytime soon?
K: There is nothing on the books. But, I would love to this coming summer. The third CD release will be in Japan, May 21st. I will soon be in Asian territory.
GH: You seem to have quite a loyal following in Japan?
K: I do. And I really love it there.