PARKERSBURG - A local man is trying to turn what began as a hobby of playing music into a career as a Christian artist.
Anthony Mossburg, 25, has spent the last couple of years recording albums and touring several states performing his music.
Most recently he performed at Pointfest music festival at Cedar Point in Sandusky, Ohio, on Sept. 15. Mossburg won the Christian music festival's talent contest, which got him 15 minutes on stage as an opener for other artists.
This photo, taken by Kaitlyn Hickey, shows Anthony Mossburg performing at Pointfest music festival at Cedar Point in Sandusky, Ohio.
"That will probably be the last festival of the summer," he said.
Mossburg taught himself how to play guitar when he was 9 years old. When he was 18, one of his friends found a recording of him singing and told Mossburg he should start performing. With the encouragement of his mom and friends, he performed once at his church.
"I did it once and didn't really want to," he said.
In addition to his music, Anthony Mossburg works with an organization called Holt International that helps children in orphanages around the globe.
Mossburg sponsors a child for $30 a month until they are adopted or reunited with their biological families.
So far this year he has helped 40 kids.
At that point, he wasn't considering making a career out of music. However, he went on to Marietta College where he met a friend who he played guitar with and performed a concert to raise money for charity. Soon after that concert he met Christian music artist Billy Wayne Arrington.
"I traveled with him for about six months and did a recording," Mossburg said.
When he got back to the Mid-Ohio Valley he sold that CD while working part-time at Microbac near Marietta, Ohio, and worked on his music on the side. Soon after, he recorded his first professional CD in Atlanta titled "Cover Me."
"About a year later I recorded the most recent CD, 'The Rambler,'" he said.
After those two CDs, Mossburg starting getting more opportunities to play and decided that music was something he wanted to pursue as a career.
"It kind of picked up and kept going. People kept asking me to play," he said.
Mossburg now focuses on his music full-time. He has a manager, Libbi Hatfield, who helps book his concerts and promote his music. He sells both "Cover Me" and "The Rambler" when he plays shows at churches and other events year-round.
Mossburg writes all of his own songs and draws inspiration from everyday life such as heartbreak and rough times, as well as his faith. He says he rarely sits down with a song idea. Instead he just plays until something sounds good.
"Usually, I start playing guitar and find a melody, find some chords that I like and then I'll sing nonsense words until it comes together," he said. "And then afterwards, I'll go back and piece the lyrics together."
Both of Mossburg's CDs are available on iTunes and Amazon. To learn more about Mossburg visit his website at www.anthonymossburg.com or his Facebook page. He is currently working on his third CD and on collaborating with other artists.
"I just try to play as much as I can," he said. "I definitely want to do this as a career."