You hear Jordan Feliz sing “The River” on WAY-FM, but did you know he has a crazy love story? We sent Rob to take Jordan for a little ride in the WAY-FM car. He got the scoop and helped us get to know the man behind the music a little better.
ROB: Tell me about how you got involved in music…
JORDAN: When I was probably in second grade, I started playing piano. As I grew up, I started finding a desire to play for my church’s worship band, but we already had a a keyboard player so my youth pastor was like, “Well we need a drummer.” So I basically taught myself how to play drums. I started playing. Then a couple weeks later our worship leader didn’t show up for a service. So I just got up and sang one day, and it ended up working out.
ROB: It ended up working out?
JORDAN: I kinda got thrown into the fire, and that started my fire for playing. My freshman year in high school I started writing music. That was the time I really started digging in to writing lyrics.
ROB: Why did you start writing lyrics?
JORDAN: It’s kind of interesting. You all of a sudden start hearing things that you want to say. And as I started creating something on piano or guitar, I would naturally pull from the feeling. I start throwing out words that felt like what the music was making me feel. As I dug deeper and deeper, I started getting inspired by sermons, and my songs became a lot more Jesus-focused. You start hearing something and get inspired by someone, and that fuels the fire. My inspiration was Jesus.
ROB: Tell me a little bit about how you met your wife, and how you ended up getting married…
JORDAN: My wife and I met 11 years ago at a resort in Phoenix, AR. Both of our families were on vacation, and we met at the pool.
ROB: Was this on spring break?
JORDAN: No. It was over the summer, but we basically hung out for a week and decided we really liked each other. She actually wrote on a piece of paper the day that I left that she was going to move to California and marry me, which is hilarious because it had her AIM, myspace info, and all kinds of stuff on it. We actually have it hanging in our house now. It’s in a frame.
ROB: Did you guys instant message a lot?
JORDAN: Oh yeah, oh yeah. Everyday. Text messaging. All kinds of stuff.
So, we started that whole journey. And when we both went back home, she was living in Chicago, and I was living in California. So we started on this long distance relationship that ended up going for four and a half years. Her family moved to Phoenix a year after we started dating, so that made life a lot easier to travel and see each other. It went from 2,000 miles to 600. So, that’s how we started the relationship.
Our parents got to meet a year after we met so that made life a lot easier to fly and see each other and visit each other’s families. And then like clockwork 4.5 years later, she moved to California. And a year after she moved, we got engaged. And a year and a half after that we got married. And now we’re married, and we just had our first daughter- a little girl. Her name is Joelie, and she’s nine weeks old. And I’m a new dad.
ROB: So what’s that like… what changes?
JORDAN: A lot changes. Sleep changes. It’s like broken sleep no matter what, but it’s awesome.
Honestly, there’s so much good. It’s incredible. You find a whole new respect for God our father becoming a father… becoming a parent. You never understand love the way that you do when you look at your child. It’s a totally new feeling. It’s like your heart just explodes the day that you see her- the day that you lay eyes on her. It becomes your life goal to do the best you can for her and to do everything to basically make sure that her life is okay. And that she’s taken care of. Man, it’s a really overwhelming experience, but in the nine weeks I’ve been a dad, it’s been the most rewarding.
ROB: What’s scheduling like when you’re a dad, husband, and an up and coming artist and songwriter?
JORDAN: It’s… it’s crazy. It’s pretty nuts, but it’s amazing. It’s been so fun to go through. My wife is extremely supportive of what I do. She and I both have a passion for ministering with music. That’s been incredible to have her support in that. Scheduling is insane. You’re kind of all over the place. I had to leave my wife and my baby when she was three weeks old and do a radio tour. I was home for 6 days, and then I left for three weeks. One of my friends that I was on tour with goes, “Man how does it feel that you’ve been gone for half of her life already?”
But honestly, it is conflicting because your heart wants to be at home, but when you have a calling that God has given you, you kind of feel like he’s given you a different drive. When you’re home, you’re a dad, and you take the time to be a dad and really engage in that. When you’re gone you take the time to engage and invest into your career and other people’s lives.
ROB: Let’s go back to your love story. When you guys met you were pretty young, 15 & 14… How’d your parents feel?
JORDAN: I think both of our parents. Let me just say it from my side. My mom and my dad were definitely like who is this girl that Jordan keeps talking to on the phone every night. Because my parents hadn’t even met her because basically they were off doing their own thing, and me and my buddy Trevor were at the pool and just kind of skateboarding and doing whatever all day and just hanging out at the resort while my parents were with their friends. And so, both of our parents, if you could just draw a question mark over the top of their head, that’s how the first year was for them. What is going on?
It was so funny because we’d both get in trouble every once in a while because we’d stay on the phone for too long because it was during that time that it was free to call somebody anywhere in the United States after 9 and if you stayed on past a certain time you’d get charged a bunch of money. There would be times where we would be up on the phone for too long. There would be days where me and Jaime wouldn’t sleep. We would just be on the phone. We’d be talking until we got ready for school the next day. My parents and her parents would be mad… so mad. They would be like we got long distance charges for like three hours on the phone. It was crazy.
ROB: How much was the biggest bill?
JORDAN: They never told me. Someday I’ll prolly have to be like I’m going to give you an extra, like, 100 dollars for the phone bill cuz of that one time. I definitely got some slack for that. I think both of our parents were like there’s no way this is going to last. And I think once it got past three years our parents slowly started to accept it, but I still think really up until our senior year, they really didn’t think it was going to progress. That really is the craziest part of my life is that story. Just the fact that Jaimie and I found each other so young. I mean really, when you know you know, you know? When you know you know, you know?
ROB: Is that going to be a song?
JORDAN: You know that’s actually a good idea. Let’s try to figure that one out right now.
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