If, over the summer, you happen to be looking for garage sales in Spokane Valley, don’t be surprised if you see a huge blue monkey at the corner of 16th Avenue and Adams Road. He’s hard to miss as he dances around and waves a sign urging you to follow the arrows and “support a local musician.” The guy in the monkey suit is Steven Fazakerley, a singer, songwriter and guitarist who’s raising $10,000 to cut a five-track CD, which, upon completion, will be sent out to record labels.
Fazakerley, 25, grew up in Plummer, Idaho. His first dream was to be a hockey player, but call it fate, destiny or a calling, he was presented with a refurbished guitar and he began plucking away, teaching himself chords and writing songs until his visions of an ice rink turned into that of a stage where the audience cheers not for a flying puck but a message rooted in a love for Jesus Christ.
“That’s why I’m an artist. This is my platform to make him famous,” he said. “Until my voice gives out, I will remain an artist devoted to my lord and savior, Jesus. I love to play and write music, but for me it would be so empty and boring without my God as the inspiration.”
Fazakerley started a band called I.G.I.T. (In God I Trust) in high school and, after graduation, the group hit the road for a 30-show tour. Upon their return, band members went their separate ways. Fazakerley remained committed to making music with a purpose. As summed up in his biography on indieheaven.com, he “launched into a nine-month arts pastor internship program that ignited a fire for local church ministry and writing worship music that helped the church be more mindful of upcoming generations.” He started another band and began leading others as a musician and a youth pastor.
Currently, in an office at ONE*, a church in Spokane Valley, he serves as a creative arts director while he works on his future as a solo artist. Working with producers in Seattle and Los Angeles and studio musicians, he is shooting for a fall release of his CD funded by donations, garage sales and gigs.
As he plays his guitar and belts out a song, his passion and talent fills the room; he is a rock star or, at least, well on his way to becoming one. His desire is simply to use music to impact a generation for Christ, solo but never alone.
In his song “God Dream,” he relays to others where he finds his courage – “So I’ll dare to dream higher than before, as I walk by your side through that door.”
Wearing a monkey suit or strumming a guitar, he hopes to point the way.