Finding Untapped Potential

May 03, 2017

How mentorship helped make Hillsong Young & Free’s Aodhan King the leader he is today.

By: Jimi Williams

This week on the Worship Together podcast, I sat down with Hillsong Young & Free, the band born out of the youth movement of Hillsong Church in Sydney, Australia.

One thing that always strikes me when I talk with worship leaders is how almost all of them can point to someone who mentored them before their first album, their first leadership opportunity and before their talent had fully matured. It always reinforces to me the responsibility that the church has to raise up the next generation of leaders.

So when I recently sat down with Hillsong Young & Free’s Aodhan King I was curious to see if this was true in his life. At just 24 years old, Aodhan’s songs and band have launched a new sound in worship music. I asked him about his first time leading worship at Hillsong Church in Sydney, Australia. It turns out that he didn’t have the most promising start.

 Aodhan: "I remember one of the first times that I sang. They got me to sing Amazing Grace. I was so nervous. I still get nervous but back then I was like paralyzed. So I had my eyes closed and was singing and then I opened my eyes and I realized that I was facing the back of the stage. I don't even know how I turned around. I felt so sick that I just ran off the stage. I went to the bathroom and was throwing up. Everyone in our group knows that story."

 Fortunately, Aodhan had people who came around him.

 Aodhan: "I had leaders like Dylan Thomas, who plays guitar for United. He was my connect group leader. Everyone in the group was kind of musical and it was just natural (to play music). It wasn't ever like we're going to meet at seven to eight to practice guitar and sing. It was just that we loved music. He loved music and I loved music, so it just happened naturally.

 I remember the first time I was on a platform. Dylan brought me up to play acoustic guitar. He was playing acoustic but he plugged in another one for me.

 They might not have had me up high in the front of house, but I was learning.

Those kind of natural things that happened and helped me get to where I am now.

 It definitely challenges me to be more like that. I think of the patience that they had with me. I knew how bad I was. I was really a horrible guitar player. I couldn't sing. Everything was bad. But the fact that he had the patience to do that, I  look back and I'm like, 'wow'."

To listen to the full interview with Hillsong Young & Free’s Aodhan King and Laura Toggs please visit your favorite podcast provider or listen to the Soundcloud embed below. 

 

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The Worship Together Podcast is an opportunity for our team to have honest conversations about the songs we sing and the way we lead. Join us weekly as we speak with some of the most instrumental artists, worship leaders, songwriters and pastors influencing the creative culture of the church today.