This Week’s Project: The Old Rugged Cross

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I’m starting a new series of videos this week: Hymns. I’ll be taking several of my favorite hymns and adding some modern production techniques to see how they turn out.

This is something I’ve wanted to do for a long time, but I’ve never felt confident in my ability to pull it off. To start with, this is going to require singing, and I know that I’m not the best singer. Also, most of these hymns don’t follow modern arrangement conventions, so I won’t be able to depend on the arrangement tricks that today’s songwriters make use of. But really, this biggest thing is that each of these hymns means so much to so many people… I’m afraid of performing a disservice to the writers/composers and the many generations who have sung these songs.

However, I still think it’s worth a try. For me, it’s going to be a way to meditate on each hymn’s lyrics and message, and the related Scripture. But additionally, each of these hymns have been a part of me, and I want to share them with my kids. Most of these songs aren’t used in church as much as they used to be, so this might be the only time they hear them. And finally, my hope is that they will be a blessing to you, and that by sharing them, they become a part of your life, too.

Cross Picture

The first hymn I’ll be working on is “The Old Rugged Cross” by George Bennard, written in 1913. I remember singing this in church growing up, but for whatever reason, I haven’t heard it sung in church in many years. Despite that, it’s a part of me, and every now and then it pops into my mind, so I’m going to record this one first.

The challenge will be the time signature and the style. If you look it up on YouTube, it’s been a favorite of country singers, but… I’m not a country singer or musician. So I’ll be trying to put my spin on it while still sticking very close to the spirit of the original.

This will be an interesting project. I truly hope that the process and end product will be meaningful to you.


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