I don’t believe I’ve written anything about World Library Publications (WLP) in my blog so here we go—
WLP is certainly smaller than GIA or OCP but that doesn’t mean they don’t have excellent music and/or composers. During the season of Lent, we are doing a song called Journey For Home by Ed Bolduc. Ed normally writes in a more contemporary style than I am used to playing, but I do like his compositions.
The Liturgy Documents tell us the instrumentation for Lent should be “sparse” with very little instrumental accompaniment used to support the singing by the congregation—but, songs like Journey For Home make for the argument that sparse can also mean a song becomes listless or uninspiring in the wrong hands, or instrument in this case.
For Me, Journey For Home passes the goose bump test. We used this composition as the recessional song for the 4th Sunday or Lent this past weekend. When I sang the opening phrase:
In our weakness we’re made strong. In our suffering we’re made stronger. We live and journey, journey for home…
…I had to stop for a while to regain my composure. The words are so strong, but the feel of the song which is slow and driving just pulls your heart into the moment. The octavo (which you can view in the “Journey For Home” hyperlink above) is arranged for piano, guitar and two trumpets. I also added a cello part based mostly on the piano arrangement and I transposed the B flat trumpet part to flute which works pretty well.
But what really helped pull the emotion out of the song was the drum kit and bass guitar. I know, you traditionalist are all choking, but in this contemporary piece, that is what works and that percussive sound and deep thumping bass guitar sound (all done with incredible taste I might add) is what takes the choir and assembly into that Lenten desert…where our hearts are longing and sometimes breaking. And hopefully takes us to the prayer and comfort of a God who we know will never leave us to fend for ourselves.