Sovereign Grace Music and Shiloh Church are Recording a Gospel Album!


In 2008, Sovereign Grace Music ran a print ad that announced we had been hoping to release a “Gospel Project” that winter.

Ten years later, we’re ultimately producing fantastic on that guarantee. Much better late than by no means, I guess.

On Thursday evening, February 28, eight Sovereign Grace people had been at Shiloh Church in Jacksonville, FL, led by H.B. Charles, Jr., recording a reside project with their 120 voice choir, ably directed by Joe Pace. The album involves five previously recorded Sovereign Grace Music songs, two songs from Shiloh, and four songs written or co-written for this album.

So what is Sovereign Grace undertaking recording an album with Shiloh Church?

The Require

For the previous 30+ years, Sovereign Grace Music has been in search of to generate songs for neighborhood churches that are theologically driven, gospel-centered, and musically engaging.

It is that final phrase that can be elusive. “Musically engaging” for whites may well not be that moving for African-Americans. Or Hispanics. Or Chinese. Or individuals from quite a few other ethnic or racial backgrounds.

Thankfully, in today’s more than-connected planet, music designs can transcend cultures and blend collectively. Basic or catchy melodies have a way of producing their way across ethnic and national boundary lines.

But individuals on a regular basis ask me if I know of any congregational songs that resonate with a black church culture and also include doctrinally sound, gospel-wealthy lyrics.

My common answer is, “Some. But not adequate.”

The Story

As I’ve talked to African-American brothers and sisters about the will need for such songs, I’ve wondered if we a single day we may well companion with a church or ministry to generate an album.

Allan Bynoe, from East Point Church close to Atlanta, has been a fantastic buddy more than the years and was an early adapter of Sovereign Grace songs for his church. Aaron and Tiffany Johnson, leaders of Doxa, the music group from Epiphany Fellowship, also helped flesh out some new sounds for songs from Sovereign Grace and other people.

But a couple of years ago, my son, Devon, occurred to meet H.B. Charles, Jr. at a conference they had been each participating in. They clicked right away. And he discovered that H.B. was taking songs he heard at conferences and introducing them to Shiloh.

A small later, Devon recommended we ask H.B. if his church may well want to record a project with us. That seemed like a fantastic partnership for a quantity of factors.

H.B. is devoted to the authority and sufficiency of Scripture, preaches the gospel regularly and passionately, and is developing a neighborhood church about these priorities. He was currently wanting to see his church sing additional doctrinally-wealthy songs and he was undertaking some thing about it. Moreover, Joe Pace, who leads the music at Shiloh’s Orange Park campus, is closely connected with H.B. and shares his heart. He’s also been in gospel music for decades. On leading of all of that, we’ve had a developing affection for these males and what God is undertaking by way of them.

So, we emailed Joe and H.B. to ask if they wanted to do a joint project. Their response was an enthusiastic “Yes!” They saw the worth in a gospel album that was additional congregational than artist driven. We saw the worth in placing a small “seasoning salt” on our music.

Immediately after operating by way of a selection of information, the dream became a reality this previous Thursday.

The Method

Going into this project we wanted not only to record an album, but to develop in our partnership. We wanted to celebrate the valuable truths we hold in frequent and discover how they may well express themselves differently in our diverse musical cultures.

Sovereign Grace Music tends (even though not exclusively) to worth intentional, theologically driven, cohesive lyrics. Gospel music tends (even though not exclusively) to use fewer words with additional passionate music that stirs the feelings. How do these two match collectively?

To discover out, we held a 3 day retreat in January that was a single of the most enjoyable occasions of songwriting I’ve ever seasoned. Jon Althoff, a Sovereign Grace pastor from Nashville (who also writes a lot of our little ones songs), contributed four new songs. We ended up co-writing some of them about the conference space table. We talked about the relative strengths of repetition and dense lyrics, and how singing about who we are and what we’re undertaking is distinctive from singing about who God is and what he’s carried out for us in Christ.

The Heart

These conversations would by no means have been feasible apart from the humility Paul talks about in Philipians two:three:

Do nothing at all from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count other people additional substantial than yourselves.

We seasoned that humility repeatedly at Shiloh. Right here are just a couple of examples:

  • H.B. graciously permitted us to use their developing, choir, and employees to record the album.
  • Joe Pace stretched the choir by getting them sing songs with additional words than typical.
  • They let us edit two songs lyrically and took our recommendations.
  • The musicians, who had been excellent and a joy to operate with, received techniques they may well serve the congregation additional efficiently. They even let me play on a couple of songs (even though I’m nevertheless figuring out what some of the chords had been).
  • The choir rehearsed 10 occasions more than two months in addition to their common weekly rehearsals.

That is a lot of Christ-exalting humility on show. I pray they saw some thing comparable in us. I know we discovered a ton from the choir’s joy, their enthusiastic engagement with God as they sing, the talent of the musicians, the really like and generosity of every person we met, a commitment to God’s Word and the gospel, and their genuine embracing of some white people who want to glorify Jesus with them! And I’ve come to know Joe superior as a passionate Christ-follower, a brilliant musician, a faithful pastor, and a buddy.

The Hope

We do not know specifically how God is going to use this album. But we pray the music and lyrics will result in us to see Jesus as additional glorious, gracious, and satisfying than we had just before. We pray these listening to and singing these songs will encounter the very same joy we did in producing it.

Most of all, we pray this album reminds us that God’s praise extends far beyond our small corner of the field. And that when God sent his Son to redeem a individuals for his glory, he didn’t specify what type of music we really should use. Only that we really should sing loud, to the Lamb, and collectively (Ps. 33:three Ps. 47:1 Rev. five:9-13). And that is what we did final Thursday evening.

Lord prepared, the album, named Behold Our God, will be out sometime in late summer season or early fall. We’d appreciate your prayers in the meantime!


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