The first quarter of 2018 has come and gone and we’re delighted to be able to say “Thank You!” to our members with an exclusive special edition download of The Orchardist’s latest album, People, People (they’ve even included coloring pages!). Members check your inboxes, and enjoy the music! Keep reading for a look at what’s been going on in 2018. Read More ›
I think I’ve cried more while listening to this song than any other in my career, and it’s partly because I didn’t write it. I wish I had, because it’s everything I love about songwriting.
If you haven’t yet listened to The New Respects, we’re here to remedy that. To put it simply, they play like they love each other. Their songs overflow with life and energy, well-crafted yet well-worn, like your favorite pair of shoes. And as you listen, you get the sense that they’re laying it all on the line with every lyric and melody. There’s no hiding here; only heartfelt, transparent truth-telling. What’s not to love?
Have you ever tried to cook ten pounds of pasta all at the same time? Add a guest list of thirty people plus two bands of hungry musicians, then imagine trying to cook ten pounds of pasta in water that refuses to boil without experiencing even a pulse of anxiety. Miraculously, the water boils (after you frantically separate the unyielding noodles into three separate pots) and there’s more than enough penne for everyone attending the event, plus extra penne which you later find has melted together at the bottom of the cookware.
When my dad answers the phone on Easter Sunday, he doesn’t say, “Hello?” He says, “He is risen!” And he won’t say anything else until you respond with “He is risen, indeed.” I thought it was goofy when I was a kid, and now it makes me cry. Dad didn’t invent it, after all.
Last year, the seemingly inexhaustible lead singer of Switchfoot, Jon Foreman, released the second four-EP project of his career, called The Wonderlands. The four EPs, Darkness, Dawn, Shadows, and Sunlight, track the hours of the day and explore a variety of themes. As if such a project were not already ambitious enough, Foreman decided to celebrate the project by playing 25 shows within 24 hours in his hometown of San Diego. This musical experience took place between October 24th and 25th of 2017, and a film crew was there to capture the action. For those of us fans not able to be there for such a momentous occasion, we can now experience it through the film 25 in 24, an hour long documentary just released.
A man plucks a simple line on an upright bass. After two bars a muted trumpet and a fragile acoustic guitar add soft harmony, and a singer moans sotto voce. Then the trumpet pauses, and the bassist and guitarist start a meandering pianissimo jazz progression in 12/8 time, to which the singer rasps a simple plea: “Fix me, Jesus.” As the bass and guitar accompaniment ascend, the singer’s voice ascends likewise, into a raspy falsetto, repeating the plea with heightened urgency: “Fix me, Jesus.” Through a verse and another pass through the refrain the singer repeats the plea several times, softly, the very softness not muting but expressing the ardor: the singer must enter the plea “Fix me, Jesus,” but will not presume to sing it in full voice—not, at least, until Jesus has begun to fix and strengthen him.
Last month I had the chance to ask Audrey Assad, one of my favorite songwriters / thinkers / poets / Twitter-ers(?), some questions about her new record Evergreen for CCM Magazine.
We don’t know exactly how it all went down, but we do know this: Jesus was dead, and then he wasn’t. A battered corpse was stretched out on a slab, and then the heart in the ribcage started beating again. Jesus inhaled and at once the heavy air in the tomb became more than air; it became breath.
[Editor’s note: Today is the day—as we walk into Easter weekend, through Good Friday and towards Sunday, we now have Resurrection Letters: Volume I to keep us company. Below is Mark Geil’s review of Andrew Peterson’s latest offering.
[Editor’s note: Throughout Lent, Sandra McCracken is sharing weekly writings, each of which is tied to a song from her new EP, Songs from the Valley, available at her website. Below you will find the seventh of these writings, to be read alongside her song, “Letting Go,” which you can listen to here.]
[Editor’s note: In case you haven’t heard, Chris and Jenna have worked tirelessly and done a terrific job with their Kickstarter campaign—their campaign ends at 9 pm EST/8 pm CST today! You’ll receive an immediate download of their record upon backing, so do yourself a favor and put your chips in with these kindhearted people. You can support them on Kickstarter here. Scroll to the bottom to watch their Kickstarter video and stream a song from their album.]