Goodbye, Justin

Thanks to reader RK for first alerting me this a.m. to Justin Ellis’s departure as the all-purpose keyboard player for several of the various Crabb family spin-offs out there. This comment suggests he going to work for John Hagee, which makes sense since one of the Crabb twins and his wife signed on with Hagee not too long ago. It’s too bad to see such a talented guy scatter his force this way. I mean, I get that the audience is larger and the money is no doubt better and steadier with Hagee, but … yeah … well, it’s Hagee, who seems to be on a prolonged campaign to be a kind of one-stop-shopping for Christian craziness.

Anyway, I’ve been so deeply and abidingly impressed with Ellis’s subtly and gracefulness at the keyboard that I think I kinda made that silly fanboy mistake of not remembering that artists don’t always make professional decisions that I like as much as their music.  In any event, good luck, Justin.

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  1. Irishlad wrote:

    At the risk of boring the pants of everyone i’ll take my chances and say it again:these guys are guns for hire,they’re none too fussy which cretins they work for as long as the coin and the working conditions are better than before.Do i blame them?…..nope.

  2. Olan Witt wrote:

    Irishlad, your comment about Justin is SO far off base! If you knew his heart you would know he is not a hired gun as you say. He has had many offers over the past few years from the Christian community as well as the secular market. He passed on a job last year with a legendary country act! This move has nothing to do with money, he could make more working in the family business.
    If you knew him you would know that this decision was made after much thought and prayer. Justin’s has felt the call to work in the church for a while now. This decision wasn’t easy because the Crabbs and bandmates are like a 2nd family to him.

  3. Irishlad wrote:

    #2 Justin?..never mentioned his name.I think you will find i was speaking generically.

  4. Olan Witt wrote:

    Irishlad. Your comment was made in response to Avery’s post about Justin. So one would assume that is who you were talking about.

  5. Irishlad wrote:

    ok this one cowboy whose hanging his boots up for the night.

  6. Irishlad wrote:

    #who’s even.

  7. rr wrote:

    Say what you will, but I feel that anyone who chooses full-time ministry in a local church has answered a higher call than one-night stands in the quartet world.

  8. Good Lord wrote:

    Why are there always people who what to argue??? I don’t get it. A musician is a hired hand. He was not part of the “family” even though I’m sure he felt he was and developed many friendships. Him changing positions/jobs is NO DIFFERENT than “normal 40 hour work week” people changing their jobs.
    Geesh…..sometimes people need a change!

  9. wackythinker wrote:

    There are ALWAYS folks on the who want to get off the road, to work at a church, car dealership, whatever. And there are always people in 9-to-5 jobs who would like to be singing on the road. Studio musicians/singers who think they want to travel doing their craft. And road musicians who want to get of the road and do studio work.

    The grass is always greener. . .

  10. Nashville Phil wrote:

    I believe you must be my Neighbor. Only someone that has earned the T-shirt, could describe the psyche of a Musician to a T! We’re Gypsies!

  11. wackythinker wrote:

    Phil, that may the the nicest thing anyone’s said about a musician in a long time! :-)

  12. Randy wrote:

    I think in most of the SG world, you are correct. I see piano players come and go, which in 99% of the cases IS the band. However I have seen the Crabb Family and band numerous times, and it is evident that there is a very close bond there. They feed off each other with a rare chemistry.
    I believe in order for a ministry to work together as skilled as the Crabb Family and band has, you have to be close and of one heart. I am sure that the Crabbs didn’t select the first people to come along and hire them based on their skill level alone. They have great hearts and I doubt they would incorporate anyone into their team who didn’t as well.
    Justin is an amazing player and will be missed, but it’s exciting to see him going in a direction other than touring. He will do great with Hagee.

  13. MikeGibson wrote:

    As a HUGE fan of the Crabb Family, and all ministries formed from it, I would agree that there is no greater bond on the road. Employed by one of the groups for a while (Mike and Kelly Bowling), I was always welcomed and treated as if I was an extended member of the family. I cannot, however, compare my tenure to that of Justin Ellis, who was there for a long time.
    Justin, Lori and Michael had an incredible chemistry on stage that NOONE has today. I believe I have seen or been on stage with almost all of them as of this time.
    I was privileged to see Jason in Vandalia, OH Sunday night and was AMAZED at the job Blaine Johnson did. I promise you the band did not miss one beat (or one note as far as that goes). Spoken as one of Justin’s greatest fans, and he knows it, the band simply went on as great as ever.
    As great as Justin is on the piano, he would never play so great that someone would gain the knowledge of a saviour through the playing alone.
    And as he takes these next steps in his young life, Can we wish him all of the success as he is mentored by no doubt the best in the world as a teacher. John Hagee is incredible and what more could a young man ask for than to be tought by the best.
    I must admit, I find it kinda humorous as the ones sitting outside the lines make their assumptions and guesses as to what is going on.. Your ignorance is truly our entertainment.

  14. PJ wrote:

    Well, all I can say is WE have Justin now in our church, Cornerstone Church, and are blessed with his spirit and his God given talent. Aaron and his wife, Amanda, are equally a God sent gift to us. Thank you, Jesus!

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