When Christian hip-hop artist TobyMac hits the road with Danny Gokey, Mandisa, Ryan Stevenson and Finding Favour, the jaunt is going to be more than a tour.
It’s a family reunion.
“I wouldn’t even call them ‘support acts,’” he says. “To me, the tour is a collaboration. It’s a themed tour and I invited a bunch of my friends. We’re going to try to do some collaborative things in the show. It’s going to be a special night.”
The 2018 “Hits Deep Tour” supports TobyMac’s Grammy-winning latest album This is Not a Test. It features the chart-topper “Love Broke Thru” and the Top 10 track “Light Shine Bright,” featuring Hollyn.
The last time he visited the Valley, TobyMac says, it was just about the time This is Not a Test was released. Seven singles later, he’s ready to introduce new music from a forthcoming album.
“I’m in the middle of a record,” he offers. “I’m in the studio now and taking a break to do this tour. I’ll have a producer hidden away on my bus, continuing to work away. The album should come in August, with the first single in January. This is exciting for me.”
He describes the song, “I Just Need U,” as a bit on the “creative side.”
“It’s got the most infectious bass line that I’ve ever done on a song. It grooves hard, but it takes you on a journey, sonically, with the backbeat being soulful. In my opinion, it kind of nods to the song ‘Move’ a little bit on my last record.”
His background musicians, dubbed DiverseCity, have easily picked up the new songs.
“My band is so talented,” he says. “We come up with the show together. We don’t hire a show producer. We get in the trenches together and come up with parts.
“I have guys in my band who can play horn amazingly well, so I have a horn section, two trumpeters and one trombonist. They’re their second or third instrument. Anything we dream up with this team of people, we can pursue it live. It’s like a dream come true.”
TobyMac with Danny Gokey, Mandisa, Ryan Stevenson and Finding Favour, Gila River Arena, 9400 W. Maryland, Glendale, 800.745.3000, ticketmaster.com, 7 p.m. Friday, February 2, $15-$70.