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The Year of Praise Podcast: 52 Songs of Praise in 52 Weeks

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Marion, OH






YOP 15: “I Can”

The song for Episode 15 came together in under an hour (though a lot of time was spent to record the vocals). "I Can" was inspired by my wife Kim's verse of the day which happened to be Philippians 4:13 ("I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me."The chorus has a call and response format and, since I didn't have a chorus of people, that's just me over and over and over again. I'm really looking forward to re-recording this song with a big group of voices. Hope you enjoy and...

YOP 14: “Blessed Assurance”

Episode 14 features the classic hymn, "Blessed Assurance." This began as a choral number, but I chose to release it in a solo form to (finally) get a song out for this week. Once the arrangement is done and recorded, you'll get the full version as a future bonus episode. *** LYRICS "Blessed Assurance" Blessed assurance, Jesus is mine! Oh, what a foretaste of glory divine! Heir of salvation, purchase of God, Born of His Spirit, washed in His blood. This is my story, this is my song,...

YOP 13: “Bigger Than You”

Episode 13 has an original song that's very appropriate for Easter. "Bigger Than You" is a bluesy and soulful number that goes out to anything that might make you spend time worrying. Happy Easter! *** LYRICS "Bigger Than You" Lost in the darkest night I know I'll be alright. I'm not alone there - that much is true. Fear and doubt just go away. There's no reason for you to stay. You don't scare me, my God's bigger than you. I trust the One who sent His Son to die - was crucified and rose...

YOP 12: “What A Friend” (featuring Grace Blackford)

Episode12 features another arrangement of a traditional hymn ("What A Friend We Have in Jesus") and features guest vocalist (and listener of the podcast), Grace Blackford. I've been able to watch Grace grow up in our church (Emanuel Lutheran) where I directed her in the youth choir and I couldn't be more honored to have her as a guest vocalist on the show. Thank you, Grace! This hymn's author had quite a sad and tragic life and the lyrics were penned in a letter to comfort someone else....

YOP 11: “Let Us Break Bread Together”

Episode11 features atrack from my 2006 album,Verse by Verse (which was recentlyreleased in digital format for purchase on bandcamp). I hope you enjoy my arrangement of "Let Us Break Bread Together" with an accompanying scripture reading by Pastor Mark Schuring of Emanuel Lutheran Church. You can stream the entire album to preview before you buy (only $10 for 16 tracks). If you haven't already, please take a moment and send me an email at hello@yearofpraise.comletting me know where you're...

YOP 10: “Give Me Jesus”

Episode10 features a cover of the hymn, "Give Me Jesus." Following a difficult week, I was quickly humbled and reminded how blessed I truly am. During this week (or any time, really), I'd encourage you to focus on the positive aspects of your life and what you really "need" compared to what you think is necessary. SPECIAL ANNOUNCEMENT in this episode immediately following the song so listen to the end of Episode 10 for that! I'm loving the song stories people have shared with me so far. If...

YOP 9: “Walls”

Episode 9 brings another song from RESOUNDworship's 12 Song Challenge. Each month, Joel and Sam from The RESOUNDworship Songwriting Podcastgive a challenge to write a praise and worship song with specific guidelines. February's song guidelines were: 1) Songs about and for the church community 2) Strict range limit: C up to Bb 3) Accessible melody and structure The song's simplicity proved to be the most difficult part of the challenge. Still, I was able to keep the melody and rhythm fairly...

YOP 8: “Fight On”

Episode 8 is here with a new song and a special story. My cousin Kevin and his wife Gretchen are parents to a beautiful baby boy named Cayden. As of this episode's release date, Cayden is 335 days old - almost ready to celebrate his 1st birthday. Unfortunately, his celebration won't be the same as most little boys and girls his age. Cayden was born witha birth defect known as a congenital diaphragmatic hernia (CDH). The diaphragm has a large hole in it which allows the lower organs (such...

YOP 7 – “Still”

This week is another first - a choir! I wrote "Still" in early 2013 in response to the violence and fear gripping the world at the time. It was first performed with a choir at the Marion Palace Theatre for a concert put together by my good friend, Ryan J Ratliff. The recording in this week's episode is from the second performance of the song which took place at Emanuel Lutheran Church with their Adult Choir. SPECIAL THANKS... to Darlene Schaadt for helping me locatethe video. to Tanyce...

YOP 6: “I Am Blessed”

Gratefulness is this week's theme with a song I wrote a few years ago called "I Am Blessed." While it's an older song, this really is its debut because I've never performed this one. It's an uptempo song somewhat in the style of Lost and Foundand I never felt comfortable playing it for anyone. But this project isn't about me being comfortable, it's about sharing songs of praise - and that's exactly what this song is. No matter what negative things might happen in my life, I know I have...

YOP 5: “Great and Marvelous”

In this week's episode I debut a brand new song, "Great and Marvelous." This praise and worship song was written as part of the 12 Song Challenge being presented by Joel and Sam at The ResoundWorship Songwriting Podcast. January's challenge was a Scripture Song, with lyrics pulled directly from (and only consisting of) certain scripture passages. I chose Revelation 15:3-4 (other options included Romans 11:33-36,John 14:5-21, Jeremiah 6:16,Hebrews 12:18-29). If you'd like to learn more...

YOP 4: “The Church’s One Foundation”

Today'sepisodefeatures my cover of a traditional hymn ("The Church's One Foundation"), a brief story about my reason for choosing that particular song, and some of the history behind the well-known hymn itself. If you'd like to learn more about the project and sign up for the email list, visit LINKS Emanuel Lutheran Church (INTRO & OUTRO MUSIC) The post YOP 4: “The Church’s One Foundation” appeared first on YEAR OF PRAISE.

YOP 3: “Forever Will I Sing”

On this episode, I debut a praise and worship song ("Forever Will I Sing") written for a children's choir. If you'd like to learn more about the project and sign up for the email list, visit LINKS Emanuel Lutheran Church (INTRO & OUTRO MUSIC) The post YOP 3: “Forever Will I Sing” appeared first on YEAR OF PRAISE.

YOP 2: “Given For You”

On today's episode I thank everyone for the response to Episode 1, debut a communion song ("Given For You"), and talk about the role of listening in my creative process. If you'd like to learn more about the project and sign up for the email list, visit LINKS The Craft of Christian Songwriting by Robert Sterling (BOOK) Emanuel Lutheran Church (INTRO & OUTRO MUSIC) The post YOP 2: “Given For You” appeared first on YEAR OF PRAISE.

YOP1: “Be Not Troubled”

On this episode I release my first song ("Be Not Troubled") and discuss the inspiration and motivationto originally write the piece. If you'd like to learn more about the project and sign up for the email list, visit LINKS Be Not Afraidby Craig Courtney (SHEET MUSIC) Isaiah 43:1-2 (SCRIPTURE) The All-Ohio State Fair Youth Choir Emanuel Lutheran Church (INTRO & OUTRO MUSIC) The post YOP1: “Be Not Troubled” appeared first on YEAR OF PRAISE.

YOP 0: Introduction to The Year of Praise Podcast

Iwelcome you to The Year of Praise Podcast, share what the project is all about and why Istarted on this Christian songwriting challenge. If you'd like to learn more about the project and sign up for the email list, visit LINKS The Awakeningby Joseph Martin (SHEET MUSIC) Joseph Martin (OFFICIAL SITE) The story behindThe Awakening (FROM JOSEPH MARTIN'S OFFICIAL SITE) The All-Ohio State Fair Youth Choir (INTRO & OUTRO MUSIC) The post YOP 0: Introduction to The...