Didn’t We Say is a song about the vows and promises we make/take on our wedding day. Marriage has become disposable today. I overheard one woman tell a friend, “Marry him, see how it works out, and if it doesn’t you can always divorce him later.” Really? Men and women have become consumers within the bonds of marriage: If I get what I want, I stay, but if the basic requirements of our contract are not met, then I’m out! Jesus must be horrified with what we’ve made of marriage. Just to be clear: To have and to hold, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, till death do us part, is Jesus’ beautiful picture of the covenant between a husband and wife—where there can be no separation.
Hot Dogs and Beans is another metaphor-laden tune, done in the typical “white-boy” reggae style that epitomizes my Caribbean influences. I love Reggae, Ska, Dub and Soca styles, all of which originated in the Caribbean Islands. I will never go so far as to adopt an accent from St. Kits or Trinidad (how cheezy!), but the music is happy and lively. I began recording this style in the late 80’s, long before other Christian artists popped up in the genre. I will leave it to the listener to sort out what “Hot Dogs and Beans” are metaphorically.
Soon and Very Soon is one of Andre Crouch’s most famous gospel songs. He passed in early 2016 and this track is dedicated to Andre, one of gospel music’s treasures. His soon and very soon has arrived for him now, and like the lyric says, “No more dyin’ now…, no more cryin’ now…he has gone to see the King.” Sydney Velasquez lends his considerable talent to the tune and gives gospel sentiments and style the song deserves. By the way, I absolutely love the idea of a place where there is no more crying.
Shattered is my offering of an Irish folk song. One day I was considering the Father’s love and goodness toward me and I was literally undone. When the love of the Father falls upon you and He reveals Himself to you—you will know it, for it will change you deep inside. It is from this revelation that we can face any trial that comes our way; His goodness anchors us strongly in place as we ride atop the circumstances that come against us, for we know that the outcome is His.
He Shall Reign was written by Roby (“Robie”) Duke, an incredible talent who passed away in 2005. …gone too young and too soon. He has had an incredible influence upon me as a writer and guitar player. Like so many Christian artists and leaders, he has been treated so unfairly by the so-called Christian community, after he did what we all do at one time or another…make a mistake. As an aftereffect of his sin (as if they never sin, hmmmm…) he was “disqualified” by many for future ministry; by those who think they are above reproach. No, not only are none of us righteous (not even one according to the apostle Paul, Romans 3:10), when we use the failures of our fellow Christians against them—when we condemn them—we do the devil’s work for him and our lips become the mouthpiece for destruction. Jesus said the poor will always be with us—I think the self-righteous will be, too! Have mercy on us, Oh Lord…
Sunshine Baby was written and sung by my talented daughter, Graziella (Gracie). In fact, all my daughters are musically gifted and I’m so proud of them all. Grace wrote the melody, the lyrics and chose the chord structure for the song when she was just seven years of age. Seven! That’s nearly Mozartesque! You may be wondering why a children’s song is on a adult Christian album… I counter by asking ask the question, “When is recording music with your daughter not ministry?” She even sang the harmony to her lead vocals. Can you tell how proud I am of her? As my youngest child, she has a special place in my heart. I wish my Terry and I could have gone on bringing babies into the world forever. Children are God’s greatest gift to husband and wife.
Foundling speaks of abandonment. James, the half brother of Jesus, said that real religion is visiting the orphans and widows. I used to think he wrote this because of their low station in society, and to do so would be a selfless act on the visitor’s part. But that is not why at all! Somewhere in his life, James experienced or witnessed the loneliness through abandonment that an orphan/widow feels. Look at it this way: widows and orphans only want one thing: to belong, and just about everyone they know belongs to someone. If you see someone all alone, reach out to them and give them the belonging that they crave. One of my heroes of the faith, Heidi Baker of Iris Global Ministries says, “Stop for the one.” Which one, you ask? The one in front of you; the one you know. And please, please, don’t ever abandon someone you claim to love. Abandonment is not a fruit of the Spirit, no matter what the circumstances are.
Grace is what it is: undeserved, unmerited favor. Considering how much Jesus gives to us, I ask you, “How can we withhold this from one another?”
Restore the King! is a swashbuckling ode to a king who lost his kingdom, but through the power of loyalty and love was restored. Listen to the drums of war all throughout the song, as they beat time to the battle movements of an army that wins back stolen ground for the kingdom of God! The voiceover was performed by my good friend Robert. Well done, Bob!
Terry’s Song was written for the person I love most in all of the world. One Spirit—one flesh. la mia migliore amica, mia molie, Teresa. Ti amo sempre eternamente, non importa cosa.
Together Again actually received a little local airplay back in 1978. It was first written for my high school sweetheart—whom I married in 1985—Teresa, my one and only, my best friend, the love of my life.