November 16, 2010

Why waste money on psychotherapy when you can listen to the B Minor Mass?

That quote, in reference to Bach, is from Michael Torke, a current American composer.

Most of us are familiar with Michael W. Smith, and we know him to be a pop Christian artist. Over the last two years I have had the privilege to get to know his music in a whole new way. In 2000, Smith released his first instrumental CD -- Freedom. Before you think, "Oh, who cares, just another boring instrumental CD. Who listens to stuff without words anyways?", just hang on a second and give this a chance.

Smith's Freedom Project is one of the most beautiful collaborations of music I've heard in my life. Though mostly piano-driven, the pieces are coupled with strings and Celtic sounds of percussion and woodwinds (especially Hybernia), speaking deeply of Smith's dreams, aspirations, experiences, and loves.

And it's not even just that. It's worship. Songs like "The Giving" are so powerful in the message that's communicated from their sheer compositional beauty. Thematically, the album is much darker than Smith's previous works, with a sense of melancholy that pervades in songs such as "Carol Ann" -- written to express the experience of losing a close friend.

Friends, I implore you to YouTube the works of this magnificent work of art. Listen, worship, and be edified. Here is Smith's Prayer for Taylor.

the mrs.

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