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Were You There

FBR is about inclusivity and I felt that making sure that a traditional Spiritual made it onto the album was and is an important part of that goal. American music as a whole has been heavily influenced by these simple melodies from the 18th and 19th centuries, and I believe we would be amiss to not acknowledge their presence in historical hymnody.

In researching a suitable song for such a purpose, I was sensitive to the fact that in general, most Spirituals were simplistic snapshots of biblical stories and concepts. I chose "Were You There?" because it referenced our Lord and made reference to His glory and greatness.

The melody is quite singable but has some nice rhythmic breaks that I found interesting. The doo-wop style was chosen as an homage to one style of music that has distinct roots in the genre of the text. The recording was blessed by Ben's guitar styling, being uncharacteristically relevant and surprisingly appropriate for someone of his young age.

The song ends with the author singing, "Sometimes I feel like shouting, 'Glory, glory, glory!'" and to that I add a heartfelt, "Amen!"


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