REVIEW: Cameron Moore – self-titled e.p.

CamMooreEPCameron Moore
Self-Titled E.P.
Independent

Highlights: “Drowning”, & “Unrelenting”

 

 

 

This past Summer I took First UMC‘s youth to CROSS MISSIONS in Charlotte, NC. While there one of the staff that led our team was a fuzzy, kind, humble young man named Cameron. He worked hard & served our team well. One morning he pulled out his guitar, & we co-led a song or two – some popular covers, & I began to see a side of him I didn’t expect. Over the course of the week, I realized he was a writer & was recording a CD – so I asked if I could hear a track before the week was out. Let’s just say that I was more than pleasantly surprised! [Read more…]

Christmas Song Tutorials for the Church: “Mary did you Know?”

MaryI explained a bit about what this series is about in my last post POSTED HERE, so I won’t retread new ground, however I’m sure a few of you are puzzled: “Mary did you Know?” has been floating around for just under a quarter of a century! However, it’s a classic that moves my heart, & one that has some tricky spots for inexperienced musicians/worship leaders.

This tutorial video has two parts:

  1. A short intro & song demonstration and…
  2. A short breakdown of a few specific simplification strategies.

 Watch the video for more information:

[Read more…]

REVIEW: The Church by Ascension Worship

Ascension WorshipAscension Worship
THE CHURCH
Ascension Music Publishing

 

 

 

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With rise in popularity of iTunes an increasing number of independent artists have – wisely I believe – focused on releasing single or EPs instead of full-lengths, so when I see an independent band release a full-length I often approach it with apprehension. At best, I expect I will download two tracks – the highlights – and the rest of the CD will turn out to be filler. I can count on two fingers how many full-length indie worship records have proven otherwise; Unhindered’s self-titled CD, and “The Church” by Ascension Worship. [Read more…]

REVIEW: Sojourn – The Water and the Blood

ARTIST: Sojourn
RELEASE: The Water and the Blood: the Hymns of Isaac Watts Vol. II
LABEL: Independent

I’ve been listening to Sojourn Community Church’s music since 2006, when they were still mostly unknown outside their home-base of Louisville, KY.  Upon first listen I was struck by a number of things: these folks are creating music missionally, in a style that connects directly with their community, not following fads or fashions to get radio play or label attention.  Secondly, they care about doctrine, and history, crafting songs that express and pay homage to not only where the church may be headed, but where it’s been.  Lastly, their music consistently manages to be modern, paradoxically,  by being so faithful to crafting genuinely timeless songs. [Read more…]

the Beauty of a Capo well-used (& the horrors of cheap capo-dom)

Hello.  My name is Shannon, and I use a capo.

*GROUP RESPONDS: “Hello Shannon!

I admit it – I’ve thought that before about “Capo Users”. I’ve gotten hand-cramps for the sake of my glorious anti-capo-dom. I’ve forced complex songs into simpler keys, far outside my sweet-spot vocally, to massage my ego and not use a capo.  I’ve played chord-shapes that don’t ideally befit the riff/hook for the sake of being that guy who’s “better than the capo users.”  Yes, on rare occasions I used a capo, but only on open tuned guitars – the fact that I once had 4 guitars on stage, 3 of which were in alternate tunings, gave me enough “cool points” to counteract the evil capo – sorta like buying “Carbon Credits”.

Back in ‘03, however, I saw Shane & Shane live.  Those guys have MASTERED the guitar, and they’re capo maniacs: capos upon capos – cut capos inserted at odd angles into other cut capos.  I think at one point he had to be using a capo on his vocal chords, too – Mr. Bernard’s range is pretty …well… “pretty” [Read more…]