O Help My Unbelief

O Help My Unbelief will probably be the closest, personal cover song I will ever do.  We’ll see.  There are a couple of musical arrangements floating around the internet but none is more soulful, more revealing, and more imprinting than Justin Smith’s version, in my opinion.  His crew over at Indelible Grace have done more to raise the standards of theologically-astute Christian music lovers than anyone else I know.  Another old hymn set to contemporary style music, IG is not only about the high calling of congregational worship but encourages the believer to revisit the lost impact of a well-crafted hymn through a more appealing modern twist.

This is the second of two studio vocals my sweet friend, Jenn, recorded.

I have not encountered a more personal testimonial of sovereign, agape love than this hymn.  And I have been brought to tears more than once by the impassioned call to humble worship before a very powerful Savior through the arranged music.  If my musical tastes had a heart, this would be the steady, rhythmic beat of it.

Lyrics::Isaac Watts

Music::Justin Smith

Drums::Electric Guitar::Bass::Ben Mueller

Acoustic Guitars::Piano::Rhodes::Wurlitzer::Simon Lenaerts::Recorded at Silensstudio in Belgium.

Vocal Recording at Hartt Recording Studio::Jennifer Nulsen

Producer::Mixed::Mastered::Simon Lenaerts::Silensstudio

[Personal Note::The collaboration efforts of consummate professional and kind friend, Simon Lenaerts, on my behalf with, so far, the most significant song of my life is profoundly humbling and eternally appreciated.]

Lyrics::

1. How sad our state by nature is! Our sin, how deep it stains! And Satan binds our captive minds. Fast in his slavish chains.

But Hark! a voice of sov’reign grace, Sounds from the sacred word: “O, ye despairing sinners come, And trust upon the Lord.”

2. My soul obeys th’ almighty call, And runs to this relief. I would believe thy promise, Lord; O help my unbelief! Foul, to the fountain of thy blood, Incarnate God, I fly; Here let me wash my spotted soul, From crimes of deepest dye.

3. Stretch out Thine arm, victorious King, My reigning sins subdue; Drive the old dragon from his seat, With all his hellish crew. A guilty, weak, and helpless worm, On thy kind arms I fall; Be thou my strength and righteousness, My Savior, and my all.

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Spread Thy Wings

Spread Thy Wings is an old hymn written by Thomas Kelly originally published under the name What Is Life, ‘Tis But a Vapor but then reworked and published by Baird under the new name, Spread Thy Wings.  Not a lot is known about this old text, yet hymn-hound Clint Wells found this gem and set it to some modern music. Kudos, Clint!

This is my first studio recorded song for this decade and my friend and studio recording engineer student, Jenn Nulsen (keep an eye on this one—>she’s going places) invited me into her school’s studio to record some project work.  This was one of the results.

Lyrics::Thomas Kelly

Music::Clint Wells

Acoustic Guitar::Dan Thomas

Percussion::Don Bassette

Recorded::Mixed::Mastered::Jennifer Nulsen

Recorded::Hartt Recording Studio::University of Hartford

Lyrics::

Verse 1: What is life?  ‘Tis all a vapor.  Soon it vanishes away.  Life is like a dying taper.  Oh, my soul why wish to stay?

Chorus: Why not spread thy wings and fly? Straight to yonder worlds of joy.  Spread thy wings and fly. Straight to yonder worlds of joy.

Verse 2: See that glory how resplendent. Brighter far than fancy paints.  There in majesty transcendent. Eyes fixed on His boundless grace.

Verse 3: Joyful crowds, His throne surrounding.  Sing with rapture of His love. Through the heavens His praises sounding. Fill Thy emerald courts above.

Verse 4: Go and share His people’s glory midst the ransom crowd appear.  Thine a joyful wondrous story. One that angels longs to hear.