Why should the Presbyterians have all the good music?

January 24, 2016

It’s been a while since I wrote about Christian music, but something this morning really made me pause and think.

Horatio Spafford is known for a few things, principally as a chum of great evangelist Dwight Moody and the writer of “It is well with my Soul” – a hymn inspired by the tragic loss of his four daughters in a shipwreck when crossing the Atlantic to holiday in England. The hymn, published by Sankey to a tune by Philip Bliss, is a standard in traditional protestant Christian churches, an inspiring message that whatever the world throws at a person God’s love and grace are sufficient to meet the challenge. It’s a hymn strong on key Christian themes, and recognised and sung across the English-speaking world.

Which is why I’m rather disappointed that Matt Redman nicked the chorus to shore up one of his recent compositions. Read the rest of this entry »


Chip off the old block

December 12, 2015

This evening the Doorknobs played another charitable gig in aid of the Aldridge Church Centre building fund, and St James’ Church Mere Green.

My role in these affairs is basically to sit at the back of the band on piano, fulfilling the time-honoured position of chord monkey (assistant chord monkey if a guitarist is present) and filling in with blistering improvisation if there are gaps to fill. Read the rest of this entry »


Carol Servicing

November 9, 2014

Like any good garage there are levels of service available from most churches this Christmas.

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Christmas at the Parish church in Aldridge.

November 24, 2013

I’m a musician on the rota of band leaders at Aldridge Parish Church. This Christmas will be one of the more intense ones for me, because I’m playing at the carol services (two of them, back to back, December 22nd evening) and the morning of December 15th. Read the rest of this entry »


Harvest Songs – Where’s all the new material?

September 23, 2013

I’m playing at church on Sunday. My minister is talking to me about Harvest themed songs, and he hasn’t found much to enjoy from the “modern” worship canon.

Not that there is much really.

Harvest for most Christians is about thanking God for the abundance of creation. Even with all the skill in the world, farmers rely on nature to operate within normal tolerances and for us, that’s in the gift of Almighty God. We like a good knees-up. Anyone who thinks we don’t know how to party has never read about Jesus’ first recorded miracle – the whole water into wine thing. We are encouraged to celebrate, but apparently we must do it with a tragically dated soundtrack.
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Psalm 150 – and why the guitar is an instrument of truth.

February 6, 2013

Have you read Psalm 150? It’s a bit of the Bible which is quite short and to the point, but also very clear on a single issue.

Praise God. Praise him with music, and dancing.

I can’t dance. Read the rest of this entry »