“Psalm 117” & “Selah #2” – Storytellers

“Praise the Lord, all the nations, exalt Him all peoples.  For His lovingkindess is great towards us, and the truth of the Lord is everlasting.  Praise the Lord.”  -Psalm 117

I wanted to share another story behind the song from one of the tracks off of our “Enter His Gates” album (You can get your copy of the album at the church or on iTunes).  Tracks 8-9 are the “Psalm 117” suite.  My torn up guitar got a beating on this track as we had a great time arranging and recording this song.

It’s titled “Psalm 117” because it is completely taken from Scripture.  All songs I write are based on Scripture, when it works, I like to just sing Scripture without any extra (how could I say it any better?!).

I wrote this song years ago for a student camp we were leading called “Submerge.”  A band in our church named “Brannon” recorded it on an EP we did in house.

With all the unbelievable missions activity that is going on in our church, I wanted to revisit the song and also bring out the groove that it was originally written.  More percussive and acoustic and dirty was what we were going for.  My boys also got to count off the song at the very beginning which they enjoyed immensely.

Eric sang the lead in one take.  Seriously.  He walked in on his lunch break, nailed it, and since we had time, I got him to sing in some more places on the album.

The instrumental section was really fun.  I had this idea of how to create another selah instrumental moment that you see throughout the Psalms.  So the first half of the section is based on an acoustic guitar solo that I worked at to be able to do in one take.  Parts would have sounded better if I would have punched in and out of the recording, but I wanted it to be a legitimate jam on the album.

The second half has Gary unleashed on the saxophone.  He recorded 3 takes which were all great.  Before the 3rd one, I told him to play all the runs he always wanted to but never had an opportunity to play them.  And that’s what you hear on the album.  The other 2 takes, I spliced up and stuck through the “Psalm 117” track.  He never actually played there and we ran out of time that day to record it, so I took those parts and scattered them through the track.  Gary looked puzzled and asked, “Did I play those parts?”  He did, but he did it at a different place.

Out of all the wonderful moments on this album, that one is what I hear about the most.  Check it out below – hope you enjoy it!

You can get your copy on iTunes here or take a listen below: