Category Archives: Demos

Stupid Things

Sometimes people ask me how I come up with ideas for songs. It can happen in a variety of ways: sometimes I’m working with a text that suggests a particular melody; other times a particular series of chords proves fertile … Continue reading

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Psalm 13: How Long?

I continue to experiment with the intersection of Jazz and Psalmody. Will my experiments prove fruitful? Who knows. But I’ve learned that experimentation–play–is an important part of music growth, so I’ll continue to follow this path to see where it … Continue reading

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Come, Sinners, Come, to the Gospel Feast

Pastor Nate preached from Luke 14:15-24 last Sunday. The parable of the great banquet is compelling and comforting, but there aren’t a lot of songs based on this text. Charles Wesley to the rescue! In 1747, he wrote a beautiful … Continue reading

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Anaweza, Bwana/You Are Able (Swahili)

I first heard this catchy little Swahili song in the video below, which was recorded at my previous church. I am ashamed to admit that I know little about it except that it is sung in Swahili, a language spoken … Continue reading

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O Risen Christ, Our Living Hope

Each week as I plan worship services, I study the scriptures the preacher has chosen in order to plan music that fits their theme. I spend lots of time at hymnary.org searching for songs and often find things that are … Continue reading

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Abide with Us (Emmaus Road)

My blog has been quieter than usual because my time has been devoted to a super-secret, epically large composition. But I still try to find time for a little musical bonbon here and there. In this case, the musical bonbon … Continue reading

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A New Heart, O God

This week’s sermon at Fuller Ave Church follows the lectionary: The Ten Commandments (Exodus 20:1-17). This is not a passage that lends itself to a long list of inspiring songs! But as I researched the service, I kept thinking about … Continue reading

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God of Knowledge, All-Consuming (with Hunter Lynch)

God’s omniscience. How do we speak about it without using hifalutin words like “omniscience”? How do we sing about it? And does this esoteric theological category have any bearing on our life and faith? Hunter Lynch addresses these questions in … Continue reading

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The Perfect Song

One of the traits that makes me annoying (among so many others) is my pursuit of perfection. I’m not a perfectionist in the traditional sense of the word–abusing myself for every short-coming–but I do seek excellence. (Making me an excellentionist?) … Continue reading

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Joy (with Harry Plantinga)

Harry Plantinga, the guru behind Hymnary.org, is fluent in computer code. But lately, all his work with Hymnary.org is rubbing off on him and he has also started writing hymn texts. “Joy” is a short, meditative lyric based on the … Continue reading

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