Phillip Sandifer is a writer, recording artist and music producer. His music is primarily known within the Contemporary Christian music field. He has recorded with such artists as Jennifer Warnes, Billy Crockett, Bob Bennett and Michele Wagner and written music for Glen Campbell, Fernando Ortega, Bob Bennett, Dawn SmithJordan (Miss South Carolina), Gary Powell and others. He has participated on recordings distributed by EMI, Disney, BMG and Warner Music Group although most of his solo recordings have been released on Urgent Records, an independent label founded by Sandifer in 1984, and more recently Wider Sky Music.
Phillip was born in Baltimore, MD but moved to Dallas, TX as a youth. He attended Highland Park High School (University Park, TX), Auburn University (Auburn, AL) and the University of Texas at Austin where he received a degree in History. He holds Masters degrees from Clemson University (Clemson, SC) and Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary (South Hamilton, MA). Currently he is working towards a Doctor of Ministry degree in Christian Worship at Covenant Seminary. He has been married to Rene Burchard Sandifer since 1984. They have 4 children.
Sandifer began his music career in 1981, when he created an independant album on a minimal budget. Since then, he has authored and performed six #1 songs (as noted in CCM Magazine and The Christian Research Report) in the Christian Music field. His top songs include "Just Because You Are" (#1), "When It's All Been Said And Done" (#1), "Learning To Love You" (#1), "The Less Traveled Road" (#1), "From A Broken Heart" (#1), "What You Mean To Me" (#1), "Man Of Compassion" (#1), "Arizona Highway" (#10), "On My Way" (#11). He has produced twenty five full-length albums for himself and others. Phillip and his brother Michael record as the group Santa Fe which achieved two top ten songs "Wider Sky" (#10) and "Love Speaks Louder" (#8) on their debut recording "Moon Circles". Sandifer acknowledges that while financial gain may elude those choosing the route of the independent label there is a great deal of satisfaction in creating largely on one's own terms. While not as visible as many artists, maintaining artistic control over his music has allowed for a career described as "constant" and music described as "consistent". His releases were originally distributed on Urgent Records through Sparrow Distribution (now known as EMI Christian Music) followed by Benson Distribution (now known as Provident-Integrity Distribution). In 1998 Phillip participated as a vocalist on Disney Records "A Bugs Life Sing Along" which was nominated for a Grammy Award in 1999.
In 1999 Phillip withdrew from the music industry in order to focus on expanding Christian radio's reach in his hometown of Austin, Texas, finish his educational pursuits and spend more time at home with his family. In 2000 he joined a local church staff in order to participate in furthering the involvement of the contemporary arts in church settings. In 2004 he participated as a guest vocalist on his second Disney Recording - "Luv-A-Byes", recording the Kenny Loggins classic (and one of Phillip's favorites) "Return To Pooh Corner". Between 1999 and 2005 Phillip participated in launching 4 new radio stations broadcasting largely Christian music programming in the Austin, TX area. In addition, he launched a local community radio station (KDRP-LP, aka K-Drip) to serve his local community of Dripping Springs,TX. KDRP plays an eclectic mix of music including Texana flavored music and involves many local personalities. Currently, Phillip serves as the Worship & Arts Director at Colonial Presbyterian Church in Overland Park, KS. In late 2011-12 he renewed his writing and recording career releasing two new solo projects "Prone To Calamity" and "Expressions: Songs Of Worship" (an album of worship songs). Of "Prone To Calamity" Cross Rhythm's Phil Thomson noted "This has to be one of the best self-produced albums I have come across in many years. In January of 2012 Sandifer also released "Simple Hymns", the first of what he says will be an ongoing yearly offering of traditional hymns produced in his simplistic acoustic guitar based style. In April of 2013 Phillip will be releasing “Both Hands” a collection of 10 new songs.
Through partnerships with SongsMatter.com and HymnsMatter.com Phillip contributes a significant percentage of the proceeds from his recordings to The Global Orphan Project (www.theglobalorphanproject.org) and The International Justice Mission (www.ijm.org). He believes that music really can matter in the world by creating awareness and financial assistance in helping organizations such as these which are seeking to house and cloth orphans and end human trafficking.