Phil Joel grew up in New Zealand and moved to the US in 1994 as bass player and vocalist for the band Newsboys. Six weeks after arriving in the US, he met his wife, Heather, at a radio station in Wichita Kansas while the band was on tour with Steven Curtis Chapman, and they were married Feb 1996.
1997 Newsboys receive a Grammy nomination for the Gold selling album ‘Take Me To Your Leader’
1999 Newsboys receive a Grammy nomination for the Gold selling album ‘Step UTo The Microphone’
2000 After being a part of writing and singing some of the Newsboys biggest hits such as Entertaining Angels, Woohoo, Beautiful Sound, and Love Liberty Disco, Phil signed with Inpop Records as a solo artist. His first solo album was produced by fellow band mate Peter Furler and featured the number one song ‘God Is Watching Over You’. The following tour was titled ‘The Strangely Normal Tour’ with Earthsuit (now Mutemath) and Katy Hudson (now Katy Perry) and LaRue as opening acts. Phil and Heather had their daughter Phynley that same year.
In 2002 Phil released his second solo album ‘Bring it On’ while still writing and touring with Newsboys. This album yielded singles such as ‘The Man You Want MeTo Be’ and ‘I Adore You’. After the album’s completion, Phil made a concerted effort to slow down his pace in order to balance band, family and church commitments. It would be another four years before writing and recording any new solo material.
2004 Newsboys receive a Grammy nomination for gold selling album ‘Adoration’. That same year Phil and Heather had their son, Eden.
2005 Newsboys receive a Grammy nomination for worship album ‘Devotion’
2006 ‘the deliberatePeople Album’ was Joel’s first independent release and released alongside the launch of he and his wife Heather’s new ministry ‘deliberatePeople’. The ministry focuses on helping people be deliberate about seeking God on a daily basis.
2007 marked a new era in Phil’s life and ministry as he stepped down from his 13 year role with Newsboys in order to spend more time with his young family and also pursue different ministry opportunities specifically related to deliberatePeople. The first album he released after the departure was ‘deliberateKids’, an album of songs that were initially written and recorded for his own children but got picked up and by Indelible/Word records. The project was well received and earned a Dove award nomination.
2008 Released fourth solo album ‘The New Normal’
2010 Released ‘deliberateKids 2’
2012 Released ‘Playlist’ a compilation of his solo music.
2014 Phil and fellow band mates form ‘Zealand’
2015 Zealand signs to Word records.
2016 Released ‘Zealand Worship the EP’
2018 Phil will be joining Duncan, Jeff, Jody, Michael and Peter on tour as Newsboys United. Zealand will perform as the opening act and will also be releasing it’s first full length album titled ‘Liberated’ in February.
Phil and Heather make their home in Franklin, Tennessee USA with their children Phynley and Eden; their 2 dogs Pip and Tira, and their four chickens.