About Anne Davis
ANNE DAVIS - Biography and Interview - by Nate Lee
Anne Davis has lived out the book of Job.
A singer/composer from Jackson, Mississippi, she was writing her own
songs as a young child and singing them in the backyard to her pets.
Then, in the seventh grade, at an Amy Grant concert, she had a
life-affirming moment, feeling the call to be a Christian artist.
“The concert really affected me deeply,” she tells ChristianMusic.com.
“I have always felt I was able to identify with her lyrics and felt she
said things in a way that I was able to connect with. She … is honest
about so many of the tough issues that we all struggle with.”
Davis reflects a disarming honesty and
vulnerability, both in her music and in conversation with her,
particularly about her debilitating illnesses that have forced her to
spend the past eight years in severe bouts of pain and depression.
“I have lived through the dark night of the soul,” Davis sums it up. “Everything that could be shaken in me was.”
moved to Nashville after graduating from Mississippi State and was
performing in all kinds of venues, including SOZOS, a music festival in
Hungary dedicated to bringing together representatives of war-torn
countries. It was at the second such concert that her life took an
appeared to be an extreme case of mono, Davis was forced to leave her
friends, her church family and her career in Nashville and move back to
Jackson to recover while living with her mom.
But she only got worse, and was diagnosed with CFIDS, chronic fatigue
and immune system disorder syndrome. “The first year I was not sure I
would be able to survive, I was in so much pain,” Davis says. Then, on
Valentine’s Day, she had surgery to remove her appendix, and the
doctors left for the evening, forgetting to prescribe her any
“I was left in severe pain for several hours. I literally thought I had
gone to hell. I begged the Lord to please take me. Finally, the nurses
got through to one of the surgeons,” Davis says.
The pain and a slower than expected recovery shoved Davis into a
“hope-deferred” despair. “I was hurt to the core,” she says. “I felt
like I had somehow slipped through the cracks.
The depression led to a spiritual crisis, too. “I continued to wrestle
with having a lot of anger toward the Lord for allowing me to suffer
the way I had.” And, on top of everything else, she lost her best
friend. “She just completely flipped out on me,” she says, “and bailed
on the friendship.”
though, she was determined to finish the album that she had begun when
she was living in Nashville. In incredible pain, both from the illness
and the treatments, and in “a brain fog,” as she puts it, Davis
returned to Nashville to record the rest of “Letters, Prayers and
“Many days, I would go and prop myself up in the studio to try to lay
down my vocal tracks,” Davis relates. The music led the way to her
spiritual healing. “Now I am trusting the Lord is rebuilding and
establishing a firmer foundation.
began to come to terms with the fact that I could stay angry with God
or I could finally tire of living at that place in my heart,” Davis
says. “I could go to Him with my deep hurts and ask Him to begin
healing my heart that had been broken into a thousand pieces.”
in 2007, Davis and her mother discovered a doctor, Jonathan Forester,
in nearby Pineville, Louisiana, who, having once contracted Lyme
Disease himself, was a specialist in detecting and treating it. He was
the first doctor in eight years of treatment to discover that Davis had
Lyme Disease in addition to CFIDS.
“Most doctors aren’t trained in medical school to detect Lyme Disease,”
Davis explains. “Dr. Forester has determined that I probably had Lyme
Disease before I ever got CFIDS.”
the treatment for Lyme Disease is also difficult and painful, Davis’s
body is finally responding well to the treatment. “Once it is in
remission, then my body should respond better to treatment for the
Like Amy Grant, her
musical inspiration, Anne Davis plies her music “with a sense of
questioning.” Her performances are described as “wearing her heart on
her sleeve.” In her live performances, she often reads real journal
entries to go with the songs that were composed from her journal.
And “honest and open and vulnerable”? That can only begin to describe
this woman whose faith has survived --- and is surviving – a truly
horrendous eight years of illness, pain, faulty diagnoses, and constant
Anne Davis has something to say, to both Christians and “those who
don’t yet have their foundational spiritual questions resolved.”
songs, each in their own way, make people who hear them feel not so
alone,” says Davis. “I suppose if there is a hope I have after I’ve
written a song, it is to leave the listener encouraged.”