Eugene Cho

seattle, music, and qcafe

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its really true.  everyone in seattle is a musician. everyone’s in a band.  everyone’s in with eddie vedder.  everyone’s in with dave matthews.  and if you’re not in a band, you just lie and say you’re still in a band.  and if you want to skirt around the idea, you just say, ‘i’m an artist.‘  but let me just say, i love seattle because it has so many musicians, artists, and creative folks. this is one of the highlights we have had in planting quest church five years ago: we have met such a diverse community of people – especially entrepreneurs, social workers, globally minded folks, artists, and musicians.

while qcafe has had its ups and downs, it’s live music venue has been a wonderful blessing. it has hosted open mic’ers, gospel, alternative, hip hop, local dreamers and stars, national christian artists, one grammy winner, and of course, many questers. because minhee and i are fairly limited in our capacity for free time with three kids, crashing the live music shows on fridays nights on occassion has been one of our delights. so, here are some of the musical highlights for our venue/church:

some favorite questers: mercir (fronted by zadok wartes who leads worship at the 5pm) who i believe can win a grammy someday and zadok has promised to squeeze my name in after he thanks jesus and his mama; dandelion method (joel & sarah heng-hartse)before they became a vh1 ‘behind the scenes’ story), and i admit, late tuesday (tara ward).  i’m a closet late tuesday fan but i’m finally coming out!  and lots of soloists from open mic, benefit shows, and gigs.  please don’t be upset if i’ve played favorites here…

other highlights: tyrone wells (check out this short video of his recent gig at qcafe); royal priesthood choir, nickelcreek (grammy winner and sick with the mandolin), ginny owens (blind but such piercing clarity in her songwriting) and couple local artists who have since gone BIG – shawn macdonald and smoosh (who just showed up in a review in the recent time magazine edition).

i’m thankful to the countless volunteers, and the live music coordinators of past and present for their incredible work, sacrifice and ‘love of music’ (leah, jennifer, and now, rachel). if you’re in seattle and you want to volunteer at shows (free admission & coffee!), email rachel@qcafe.org.  open mic re:boots next week on tuesday nights at 7pm and live music is on most friday nights at 8pm. we’ve got some fun shows (check out qcafe on myspace) lined up in the coming months and yes, the rumor is true: chris tomlin is playing the cafe in november but unfortunately, it’s pretty much sold out already.  and one of these days, dave matthews will pop in during open mic…

newer folks at quest as well as outsiders often question if it’s proper for quest to sponsor a non-religious cafe and thus, a non-religious music venue. the music we host is all over the board (the majority of the bands/music are not ‘christian’) as long as they sign our policy for no cussing, no hate lyrics, and so forth.  for us, this is a tangible way to serve the local community, to add and hopefully beautify the local arts and culture, to build relationships with folks, and a direct output of our philosophy to be missional. no preaching, no proselytizing, no passing out tracts – the live music coordinator gets up during intermission, welcomes folks, shares the vision of the cafe, and shares how a church called quest church who meets in the same space on sundays raised funds to start the cafe/venue. all in hopes that our actions speak louder than our words.

and one of these days, my band – CHOMAMA AND THE OVERCOMPLEXIFIEDS will play the venue.  stay tuned…

Filed under: culture, emerging church, Q Cafe, seattle

2 Responses

  1. eugenecho says:

    for those that have already emailed me, the comment about dave matthews was a joke. sorry to get your hopes up high.

  2. […] Q Cafe; Named one of Top Independent Cafes by Worthwhile Magazine; Seattle Times article on Q; Q Cafe Music Venue; on MySpace; on […]

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One Day’s Wages

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As I soaked in this breathtaking sunrise this morning above the clouds, I felt compelled to pray for so my places in America and around the world that are experiencing such pain, heartache, injustice, and violence. At times, it feels so overwhelming but in prayer, I was reminded of these words from John 16:33. As we keep striving, working, hoping, preaching, loving, truthtelling, reconciling, repenting, forgiving, dismantling, peacemaking, Kingdom building...may we fix our eyes on Christ: “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” - John 16:33 Grateful for a very full weekend of ministry and preaching in Toronto, Canada (GTA). Such a privilege to partner with @worldvisioncan @wvcollective to advocate for the most vulnerable around the world. God is so gracious. A true honor to meet and encourage local pastors, lecture at Tyndale University & Seminary (photo), and preach at Richmond Hills Community Church, Compass Point Bible Church, and New City Church. Thank you, Lord, that you use broken and imperfect people like me to speak of Your love. Today, Minhee and I dropped off our eldest child at her college. We have been thinking and praying about this day for many years. On some days, we hoped it would never come. On other days, we couldn't wait for it to come. On some days, we prayed for time to stop and other days, we prayed with anticipation. 
After an entire summer of laughing it off, it hit us...hard...this week. Seeing all of her stuff laid out on the basement floor was the catalyst to a load of emotions.

After unloading the car and taking her stuff to her new home for this year and mindful that she might never live with us again; helping sort out her stuff, saying hello to her roommates...I wasn't sure what to do or say.

A flood of thoughts rushed my mind.

Is she ready?
Have we done enough?
Have we taught her enough? 
What if this? What if that?

And so we shared what we have shared with her the moment she began to understand words: "Remember who you are. Remember WHO you belong to. Remember what you're about. God loves you so much. Please hold God's Word and His promises close and dear to your heart. We love you so much and we are so proud of you." And with that, we said goodbye. Even if she may not be thousands of miles away, this is a new chapter for her and even for us. I kept it composed. Her roommate was staring at me. I didn't want to be that father. I have street cred to uphold. Another final hug. 
And I came home.
And I wept.
Forget my street cred.
I miss her. I love her.
She will always be my little baby.

I'm no parenting guru. I just laughed as I wrote that line. No, I'm stumbling and bumbling along but I'd love to share an ephiphany I learned not that long ago. Coming to this realization was incredibly painful but simultaneously, liberating. To be honest, it was the ultimate game-changer in my understanding as a parent seeking after the heart of God.

While there are many methods, tools, philosophies, and biblical principles to parenting, there is – in my opinion – only one purpose or destination.

Our purpose as parents is to eventually…release them. Send forth. For His glory. Met a friend and fellow pastor who I haven't seen in over 20 years. In him, I saw a glimpse of my future. While only 10 years older, his kids are married and he's now a grandfather of 3. His love for his wife and family were so evident and his passion for the Gospel has not wavered. It was so good to see someone a bit older still passionately serving the Lord with such joy and faithfulness. Lord, help me to keep running the race for your Glory. Happy wife.
Happy life. - Eugenius 3:16

I still remember that time, many years ago, when Minhee was pregnant with our first child. She had left her family and friends in Korea just two years before. Her morning sickness was horrible and when she finally had an appetite, she craved her favorite Korean food from certain restaurants in her neighborhood in Seoul, Korea. I had no way of getting that food from those restaurants so I actually said, "How about a Whopper? Big Mac?" Sorry honey. Eat away. You deserve it. I don't care if it sounds mushy but sunsets are one of my love languages. Seoul, Korea was amazing but WOW...what a breathtaking welcome back sunset by Seattle. Not ready to let go of summer.

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