Amy Grant and Michael W. Smith bring their ‘2 Friends Tour’ to the Bismarck Civic Center Wednesday, October 5th. The pair have toured together many times over the years, beginning in 1982 when Smith was Grant’s keyboard player.

IW: What is it like touring with Michael W. Smith again?
AG: It feels very familiar. Touring with Michael made me want to pull up more of the older songs, put those back in the set. He is fun loving and easy to be around. We don’t have tons of time together of the road, and we’re not on the same bus, but it is nice to travel with an old friend.

IW: The ‘2 Friends Tour’ is not the only thing you are doing this year, you are also touring on your own, correct?
AG: I am touring more this year than I have in a long time, part of that was the inspiration to tour with Michael. Last summer we did a show together in Detroit and enjoyed it so much, that night we got our calendars out and said, ‘how soon can we do this again?’
I looked at the calendar a couple weeks ago, and realized I had 70 shows between now and the end of the year. I haven’t done 70 shows in a year since Vince and I were married.

IW: Is there anything you ‘never leave home without?’
AG: I think I’ve left everything! I would like to say my guitar, but I actually went to film a concert, got to the airport and forgot my guitar! One of the crew lived close to the airport, so he ran and got his guitar, so I borrowed his.
I figure just showing up is what matters! You can just about borrow anything else – clothes, a bible, you can borrow a guitar, but you can’t not show up.

IW: Your latest CD, ‘Somewhere Down The Road’, is a wonderful collection of songs that a lot of women can relate to. Was there a specific message you were trying to convey when you recorded it?
AG: My intention with this last record was to do a collection of songs that describe the journey of life. We are seeing our children grow up, celebrating good times and hard times.
My mom, who passed away in April of this year, when I think about her, I think about her approach to life. It was never, ‘life was going to be easy,’ but during a tough time it was, ‘well, I guess now we’re going to see what God’s mercy looks like from this angle.’
She was always so encouraging. When I was a little girl, she would say things like, ‘Amy, if you can learn to be loved by the Holy Spirit, your life will be more exciting than any secret agent you’ve ever seen.’

IW: What is the format of the concert, do you sing alone and together?
AG: There is no opening act. Michael and I have two different bands. I host the first half of the show and he hosts the second, but we share time together on stage.

Editor’s Note: Grant said there would be a mix of old and new favorites, as well as songs that have made it big on the Pop charts.