Saturday, December 22, 2007

Tis the Season

It's Saturday at 3:30pm. Tonight PCC is having a big concert with Tim Zimmerman and the King's Brass. We have a 100+ voice community chorus singing "Hallelujah" as the finale. Should be amazing!

Then tomorrow there are three Advent worship gatherings, like normal. Tim and the Brass will be leading in the morning, so that'll be cool.

Then Monday night there are TWO Christmas Eve gatherings, one at 5:30 and one at 9.

Six services in three days! I'm praying that God will sustain us all and use us for His glory tonight and all throughout the weekend!

Now it's off to iron, shower, dress and head out... Here we go!

Next week: REST in Simi Valley, seeing some movies (Sweeney Todd, No Country for Old Men, maybe Juno...) and maybe skiing at Mountain High!

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Maybe Tonight?

From my concert back in August. Bob Seeberger made a fantastic DVD of it...

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Well THAT'S Unfortunate...

There's a band I like called the bird and the bee... Very cool stuff. But as I was just sitting here typing, I was listening to their song "Because," which includes the following very unfortunate malapropism... "Because, because... I'm lying prostate on the ground." I'm not kidding. And she sings it lots and lots of times.

Who in the world let that one get by?

So Cute...

On Friday we went to see the new Disney movie, Enchanted. It was really great, and I highly recommend it. Really creative and sweet.

Emily was a little scared during some of the more intense scenes, but at the climactic moment, she did something so cute:

As Giselle lay dying, her true love needs to give her "true love's kiss." As the guy stands there with the realization that HE is her true love dawning on him, Emily starts whispering "Do it, do it, do it, do it, do it..." As he starts to lean in to kiss her, she changes to "Yes, yes, yes, yes, yes..." This was absolutely adorable, and people sitting around us were looking at her and smiling... but then the best... As they kiss, she makes a kissing sound with her mouth...

Oh my gosh. My daughter is a princess.


It was so great... We were in the 11th row. Closer than we've ever been at any show. We could see and hear everything! I was disappointed at first to see that Elphaba, Galinda and Nessarose would ALL be played by understudies!! But the moment the show started, I forgot all about it. Honestly, even to be an understudy at that level, you have to be fantastic.

Caissie Levy played Elphaba. Here's a cool clip of her doing "The Wizard and I" on Broadway:

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Wicked Crazy Week

My parents were supposed to visit for Thanksgiving. They were going to leave Indiana on Saturday and drive(!) to California, stay for a week and then head home. Then my grandma (dad's mom) had a fatal stroke. She hung on for about a week and then died on Friday. In the meantime, Luanne's uncle Paul died on Wednesday. So mom and dad's trip got cancelled, and we ended up here in Simi Valley to be with Luanne's family. The memorial was yesterday (Lu and I sang), and we've decided to stick around and have Thanksgiving with the family.

I was sad that I couldn't go to Kentucky to be with the family for Grandma's funeral. I was the only grandchild not there, but - as my dad helpfully pointed out - I am the only grandchild who lives in California. My cousin Beth probably travelled the farthest, driving down from Michigan. And then my Aunt Carolyn had to come from Africa. (She is a missionary in Tanzania.)

I loved my grandma. Especially in the last 15 years or so. I remember riding my bike to her house when I was a kid and watching Nickelodeon. We didn't have cable at my house, and "You Can't Do That On Television" was my favorite show. I would also eat those little chalky candies and play War with her. She was a sweet lady, and she will be missed.

On the bright side, we are going to see "Wicked" at the Pantages Theater tomorrow night! Luanne and I really like the music for this Steven Schwartz show... and we're excited to see Carol Kane as Madame Morrible. Here's a great clip from the Tony Award performance of "Defying Gravity"...

Friday, November 16, 2007

By Request... A Few "Bootlegs" from Hume Lake

My big hit radio single... :)

Covering the wondering Amy Correia...

And an original worship song: "God of All Light"...

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Sweet Emily Loses a Front Tooth!

Isn't she beautiful??

Suzanne Vega Live

I loved the concert Monday night. I was really close to the stage, so I could see and hear every little expression and nuance in the music. Mike Visceglia, the bassist, is a genius... They did "Left of Center" and "Blood Makes Noise" with just bass and voice... very cool.

The band was so tight and good... Even though they were missing one. Their new keyboardist, Laila Biali, is in the hospital with some sort of stomach problem. Let's pray for her...

I have been a huge fan of Suzanne's since I was a junior in high school. "Luka," of course, was a huge hit, and I remember having seen her on the Grammys. I got a cassette of "Solitude Standing" from the library and listened to it on my Walkman during computer class. It was really fresh and new sounding to me, and I loved her words... Still do. Every little phrase is carefully crafted. Like this one, from "Language": If language were liquid, it would be rushing in. Instead here we are in a silence more eloquent than any word could ever be. These words are too solid; they don't move fast enough to catch the blur in the brain that flies by and is gone.

Here's my attempt at a setlist, although I am sure I don't have the order right:

Tom's Diner (a cappella)
Marlene on the Wall
New York Is a Woman
Frank and Ava
Pornographer's Dream
Ludlow Street
(I'll Never Be) Your Maggie May
Left of Center
Blood Makes Noise
Angel's Doorway
In Liverpool
Tom's Diner (DNA version)

Encore 1
Zephyr and I
The Queen and the Soldier

Encore 2
Small Blue Thing

Here are some video clips I took at the show:

"Left of Center" - Suzanne with Mike on bass...

"Luka" - Full band. You might hear me singing along...

"Tom's Diner" - The "remix" version. It was very cool... She even took the microphone off the stand and danced around.

This closed the show and then she and the band came out for two encores. Here's Suzanne's take on the night, from her tour blog. Really glad I went, even though no one wanted to join me! It was well worth the time and money to see an artist I've admired for so long.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Hume Lake & Suzanne Vega

Just got back from a great trip to Hume Lake for their Father/Daughter Weekend. I was able to take the whole family, so that was cool.

And I had a killer band. From the left, Carlos Silva on bass, Matt Henderson on drums, David Greco on rhythm guitar and Ugur Taner on lead guitar.

Unrelated, but still really cool: I am going to see Suzanne Vega at The Fillmore in SF tonight. She's been a favorite of mine since high school, so it's cool to finally see her. Looking forward to that! Her newest album, Beauty & Crime, is great...

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Happy Birthday to Me!

I turned 36 on Saturday, I got some iTunes cards worth $80... and Luanne gave me a Starbucks card because she knew I wanted a specific CD from there that was released today. I'm listening to Joni Mitchell's "Shine," her first studio album of new material since 1998's "Taming the Tiger." It's a beautiful album, and I'm glad she came out of "retirement" to record it.

I also downloaded several albums today, and I'm just starting to listen: Herbie Hancock's "River - The Joni Letters" (also released today... featuring jazz takes on Joni and guest vocals by Norah Jones, Tina Turner, Leonard Cohen, Corinne Bailey Rae and Joni herself), "She's Spanish, I'm American" by Josh Rouse and his Spanish girlfriend Paz Suay, "Sky Blue Sky" by Wilco, ""Life in Cartoon Motion" by MIKA, the self-titled debut of the bird and the bee, "Sean-Nós Nua" by Sinéad O'Connor, "Remedy" by David Crowder*Band and a few live tracks from Indigo Girls. And I still have $17 left! It's an embarrassment of riches.

And what's next? I'm from Barcelona? Death Cab for Cutie? Mark Knopfler & Emmylou Harris? Eisley? Damien Rice? Josh Ritter?

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Beautiful Ellie

Here's my first picture of Ellie... Grabbed it from my sister's blog. SHE got it by taking a picture of the picture Micah sent from his phone... Whatever. Presenting my beautiful new niece!

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Celebrating Life

What a glorious day! Emily Grace and Zachary Joseph are six years old today! Luanne and I have been reminiscing today about these great kids of ours... How our lives are so rich and full. Sure, it's a lot more difficult to keep the house clean these days. We don't sleep as much as we used to. Our grocery budget is through the roof. And let me tell you... the house isn't quiet very much. Far from it. But our home is alive and full of energy and fun and joy, and we wouldn't change it for the world.

Happy Birthday, Em & Zach! We are so thankful to God for you! I pray that God would continue to grow you up nice and strong, and that you would continue to grow in your smarts (kindergarten is a big, new world!), and that you would continue to grow in your knowledge and love of our great God.

My brother Micah called this afternoon to let us know that he and Nicole are parents! Eleanor Renee ("Ellie") was born today! Welcome to the world, sweet little niece! Your cousins are proud to share a birthday with you!

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Testing, testing...

Well, look at that... Blogger lets us upload video now... Let's try this out... I'll start with my very favorite Youtube video of all time. God bless John Daker and Reva Unsicker. The first time I saw this, I laughed until I cried.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

The End of the Summer

The interns are gone. Harry Potter is a dim memory. I've sung for the 49ers/Oakland game. We went to Twain Harte for two short-but-great vacations. The Romania/Hungary trip is almost upon me! My big Broadway concert/fundraiser is long over. School starts for the kids next Monday.

The summer is over! Where did it go?

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

HP & PCC Euro-Mission

I'm halfway through Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows with Josh. It's great so far...

Come visit my newest blog: PCC Euro-Mission. I'm heading for Hungary and Romania in September and October; come read about it!

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Quiet Week, Harry Potter, MNB

It's a strange week at the Nightingale home... Jacob is at Frontier Ranch for the week (Email him!) and Emily is with her grandma and grandpa in Simi Valley. Zach is going to skatecamp every morning. It's pretty quiet.

Josh and I are going to see Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix at midnight. We are very excited. It's all part of the big July 2007 Harry Potter Month! The final book, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, is released at midnight on the 21st, and Josh and I will be at Kepler's big Potter Party to pick it up and celebrate with everyone. It's been really fun to walk through this series with him.

I'm more excited than Josh... I just re-read Books 5 & 6 in preparation for Book 7, and it's a good thing... I had forgotten a lot of the details.

I even wrote about it for the Covenant's website. Read my essay here.

In other Big News, the Matt Nightingale Band is no more as of next week. We'll be playing Higher Power in Foster City this Friday night and then Mt. Hermon all next week, and then that's the end of the band... for now. I'll continue to make music, of course, and lead worship wherever God leads. I'm very grateful for the past year and a half and to everyone I got to play with... Joey Zapantis, Josh Bubniak, Steve Young, Brad Ciraulo, and most recently... David Bromberg, Geoff Anderson, David Greco and Ugur Taner.

Peace out.

Friday, June 29, 2007

Holding Pattern

My new ECC blog post. Enjoy!

I'm currently blogging from my new MacBook Pro. It's wonderful, but my browser (Safari) isn't cooperating with Blogger right now, so I don't know how to imbed a link. You will have to manually cut and paste... sorry about that.

[Edit 7/1/07: Thanks to Zanne & Glenn/Jenn Wong, I now have Firefox, so voila! A link!]

Monday, June 25, 2007

ECC Worship Blog

I'm now an official blogger on the Evangelical Covenant Church worship website... I'll be posting on Fridays. Check out my first post here.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Sweet Jane

I've been a Jane Siberry fan for a while now. Her album When I Was a Boy is a masterpiece, and its opening trio of songs, "Temple," "Calling All Angels" (featuring k.d. lang) and "Love Is Everything," still knocks me out every time.
I wouldn't go as far as some... There's a whole community of people who think she's a goddess (some, I think, literally). But I think she's a unique voice... truly like nothing I've ever heard.
Jane is also a bit of a strange bird... She certainly follows her own muse wherever it may lead her. Lately it's led her to sell all of her possessions, change her name to "Issa" and establish a "self-determined" pricing policy for downoading .mp3s from her website.
I think it's pretty revolutionary, and I think you should check it out. Here's her statement about what "self-determined" pricing is all about. She writes, "You decide what feels right to your gut. If you download for free, perhaps you'll buy an extra CD at an indie band's concert. Or if you don't go with your gut feeling, you might sleep poorly, wake up grumpy, put your shoes on backwards and fall over. Whatever. You'll know what to do." And later... "Things to ponder. Not too long, though. Life is out there waiting.I am making a choice to work this way and take full responsibility for whatever it may bring to me. You make your own decision and stand by it, too. This is not a guilt trip. Feel no pressure."
Funny thing; I downloaded her entire catalog (I had 2 of her albums already), and I've been sleeping like a baby. I guess that "feels right" to my gut.
So, go check it out. Thanks, Jane... uh, I mean Issa.

Sunday, June 3, 2007


Singing this song at Sunday At 6 was completely inspiring and humbling. May these words be true in my life and in the collective life of the Body of Christ at PCC.

Words & Music: Charlie Hall/Matt Redman

Oh Christ, be the center of our lives
Be the place we fix our eyes
Be the center of our lives

You're the center of the universe
Everything was made in You, Jesus
Breath of every living thing
Everyone was made for You
You hold everything together

We lift our eyes to heaven
And we wrap our lives around Your life
We lift our eyes to heaven, to You

If only I could learn, really learn to "wrap my life" around the Life of Christ. What would that look like?

Thursday, May 31, 2007


I'm bursting with pride and gratitude. Joshua Matthew is twelve years old today. My son is an awesome young man... strong, talented, kind, smart... I'm so glad God made him and gave him to his mom and me.

God, thanks for Josh... Continue to grow him up into the man You want him to be. Give him everything he needs and help him to seek you with all of his heart, soul, mind and strength. Meet him as he seeks YOU, and may he follow Jesus all the days of his life, all the way to heaven...

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Thanks, Steve

I'm taking the night off from Sunday At 6, and it's cool to know that the band is in capable hands. Steve Young is getting to be a pretty in-demand worship leader, too, so I have to use him while I've got him...

Rock and Roll!

Saturday, May 26, 2007


I was driving the kids around the other day in the minivan, and I thought I'd open their mind to some semi-classical music. I found the classic 1959 recording of Leonard Bernstein playing Gershwin's Rhapsody in Blue with the Columbia Symphony Orchestra on my iPod.

They were very impressed and interested, and Josh asked if he could se it on Youtube. I didn't think they would have it, but I was wrong. It's not the same performance, but it's darn close, and it still shows the magnificence of the piece and the brilliance of conductor/pianist Leonard Bernstein. This piece woke me up to classical/orchestral music back in high school. It was only years later that I discovered Bernstein's contributions to musical theater. I was (and am) a big fan of Stephen Sondheim's work, and Bernstein gave Sondheim his first Broadway gig... writing the lyrics to Bernstein's music for West Side Story. Amazing stuff.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

The Last Time I Saw Jesus

I found this painting somewhere online... If anyone knows where, please let me know. I am using it for my desktop right now, and I just have no idea where it came from. I have been so affected by this image... For some reason it strikes me as just right. Jesus at the carnival. It's strange and somehow comforting. Jesus is God Incarnate... right here in the mess of our human existence. Jesus at the freakshow... I love it.

For some reason I'm reminded of a song by my favorite band, Over the Rhine. It's called Jesus in New Orleans, and you can hear it here (the studio version from the magnificent double album Ohio) or purchase a "fans only" live version here.

Jesus in New Orleans
Words: Karin Bergquist/Linford Detweiler
Music: Karin Bergquist

The last time I saw Jesus
I was drinking bloody marys in the South
In a barroom in New Orleans
Rinsin' out a bad taste in my mouth

She wore a dark and faded blazer
With a little of the lining hanging out
When the jukebox played Miss Dorothy Moore
I knew that it was him without a doubt

I said the road's been my redeemer
I never know just what on earth I'll find
In the faces of a stranger
In the dark and weary corners of a mind

She said the last highway is only
As far away as you are from yourself
And no matter just how bad it gets
It does no good to blame somebody else

Ain't it crazy
What's revealed when you're not looking all that close?
Ain't it crazy
How we put to death the ones we need the most?

I know I'm not a martyr
I've never died for anyone but me
The last frontier is only
The stranger in the mirror that I see

But when I least expect it
Here and there I see my savior's face
He's still my favorite loser
Falling for the entire human race

Ain't it crazy
What's revealed when you're not looking all that close?
Ain't it crazy
How we put to death the ones we need the most?

The last time I saw Jesus I was drinking bloody marys in the South...

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Magic Flutes and Sacred Space

I went to see Stephanie Balavac and Rachel Bittner play in their flute choir, Magic Flutes, on Friday night. That's right, a 28-piece flute choir. All flutes, all the time. (OK, OK, there were a Native American drum, a keyboard and a double bass, too.) The music was unexpectedly beautiful. Steph introduced a piece that she had arranged, Mark O'Connor's "Appalachia Waltz," and there were other beautiful pieces by Vivaldi, Mozart, Bach, Debussy and more... Really nice. Emily went with me and nearly fell asleep on my lap. I kept offering to take her home early, but she wanted to stay for the cookies afterwards.

The concert was held at St. Matthew's Catholic Church in San Mateo. It was a very ornate sanctuary... One of my friends calls it the "Alien Jesus Church," but I found it oddly appealing. Having been raised in such sterile Evangelical surroundings (my most formative years spiritually were spent worshipping in a multi-purpose gymnasium/auditorium), I really find myself drawn to the sacred, the mystical... I know that's kind of stereotypically "postmodern," but it's true for me.

Humbled and Grateful...

I love being a part of a community of believers who are so committed to living the gospel in the world... Last Saturday was a beautiful day indeed.

Friday, May 18, 2007

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Jerry Falwell Dead at 73


Welcome home, Jerry... Rest in peace and may you be very surprised by the amazing grace of God.

I have so much to say about this... Jerry Falwell really influenced my early experience with faith. My parents were devotees of "The Old Time Gospel Hour" and even wore the "Jesus First" pins. However far I have come journeyed from my early admiration of his political views and his right-wing theological dogma, I am still grateful for the role he played in my life... if for no other reason than I can look back and see how I've grown in my understanding of our great God.

It'll be really interesting to see what the Evangelical community has to say about this over the next few days, as well as the broader Christian world. What will Muslims, gays and lesbians and feminists say? What kind of legacy has he left for the Kingdom of God? Is the world truly more "moral" because Falwell was in ministry for 50+ years?

More later. I have to get some work done.

Monday, May 14, 2007


Welcome to Matt's Blog 2.0. I used to blog on my website, but I hardly ever updated it. And I would always cut and paste it into my Myspace blog too, but that got to be really tedious. Blogger makes it really easy, so I'll try it out...

Since there's never really a good way to start, I'll just do a brief intro for anyone who cares, and then I can dive in to the things I really want to talk about tomorrow.

My name is Matt Nightingale. I'm a follower of Jesus; husband to Luanne and father to Joshua, Jacob, Emily and Zachary; pianist/singer/songwriter; music and creative arts pastor at Peninsula Covenant Church; and licensed minister in the Evangelical Covenant Church.

I'm passionate about God and what it looks like to be whole people, living as God designed us to live. I'm passionate about my wife and kids and being the best husband and father I can be. I'm passionate about music and the arts... creating it and enjoying it! I'm passionate about the Church, the Bride of Christ, and I want to know how I can serve God through the Church and help it to be relevant to a 21st Century world.

I'm passionate about culture, and I'm not afraid of it. I think God shows up in the world a lot more often than most Evangelicals seem to think he does, and I love to see glimpses of grace as the Kingdom slowly works its way through the big, bad world. I want to do all I can to redeem this place. Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Amen.

My favorite band is Over the Rhine. My favorite show is Lost. (I'm currently catching up... nearing the end of Season 1 on DVD.)

I'm on Facebook and Myspace. Look me up.

If anything I write resonates in you, please join the conversation. I look forward to this journey together.
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