The Gentle Wolves Vol. 2: Track 8 – All Things New

Today’s song:
All Things New
Words and Music: Seth Woods, 2008.

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This is the final track of Vol. II from us Gentle Wolves.  This is one of my favorite songs.  This is also, for now, the last of Seth Woods’ precious songs that Servant Church uses regularly.  It is so simple, and can be oh so powerful.  Thank you Seth for your incredible singing spirit.

Look for the bandcamp.com collection of Vol. II in the next week.
Also, look for Vol. III in two weeks which will be 3 songs for advent.

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The Gentle Wolves Vol. 2: Track 6 – God of the Dead

Today’s song:
God of the Dead
Words and Music: Seth Woods, 2008.

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This is one of the last of Seth’s songs that have made such a mark on Servant Church in its first year.  I love the simplicity of this song.  The joke has often been made that ‘God of the Dead’ makes a great metal band name.

This song serves as a corporate prayer. It is an ‘us’ song as opposed to an ‘I’ song.  These are important because the Christian life is not about ‘me and God’, its about ‘us and God’.

Key lyric: Open your mouth and breathe our new name

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The Gentle Wolves Vol. 2: Track 5 – O For a Thousand Tongues to Sing

Today’s song:
O For a Thousand Tongues to Sing
Words: Charles Wesley, 1739.
Music: Charles G. Glaser, 1828.  Additional lyrics by Richard Kentopp, 2010.

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This is the first Wesley song which I have been able to convert to something not involving a large organ.  Now that I’m working for a Methodist church, there’s a lot of pressure to do many more similar conversions by our great champion, Chuck.  While I do appreciate Wesley’s theological and ecclesiastical legacy, his songs are very…. wordy.  And…. melodically complex.  Sometimes it seems like he was in a competition with his brother John to see how many words they could cram into a day.  We might see more of Wesley at Servant Church in the future, but for now I’m still catching my breath from getting through the last stanza.

I decided to add the cheezy little refrain in the middle for two reasons.  First, musically, it just begs a refrain, something phrased slowly that doesn’t feel like we’re rapping with the Wesley brothers.  Also, I wanted to contextualize the song to our local context at Servant Church.  ‘Teach us the songs that will cause all to sing, breathe through our lives to impart the grace that only you can bring’ This is a nice cheezy wedding of Servant Church’s mission statement and Wesley’s original lyrics.

Key lyric: My gracious Master and my God, assist me to proclaim, to spread through all the earth abroad the honors of thy name.

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The Gentle Wolves Vol. 2: Track 2 – Come Down O Love Divine

Today’s song:
Come Down O Love Divine

Words: Ralph Vaughan Williams, 1906.
Music: Seth Woods, 2008.

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Sorry for the delay in posting this song, I had some problems having this track come together.  It eventually worked with some percussion help from my long time collaborator and brother Winston Reed Chapman.

This is another of Seth Woods’ incredible songs that we use regularly at Servant Church.  The lyrics, taken from the turn of the century America, speak perfectly of the ways which we are dependent upon the LORD.  We absolutely can not visit our Creator.  Instead God, his fire, light, grace and love are things we must receive and certainly can’t conjure.

Key Lyric: Come down O love divine, seek thou this soul of mine and visit it it with thine own ardor glowing!

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The Gentle Wolves Vol. 1: Track 7 – Be Thou My Vision


This will be the final track of The Gentle Wolves Vol. I.  Look for Vol. II to begin posting in the early fall.  In the next week these will all be available through Bandcamp.com as an album.  Please point people towards the blog, and towards the bandcamp album.  It will be free, but you will be able to donate to Servant Church if you like the music that the community is fostering.

I, Richard, the head Wolf, want to say a special thanks to regular Wolves Kyle Robertson (piano), Paul Price (guitar), and Molly Beaird (vocals) for helping me make these recordings.  We are almost done with 14 more songs, so there is plenty more music on its way from these Gentle Wolves.

Today’s song

Be Thou My Vision
Words:  Dal­lan For­gaill, 8th c.
Music: Irish Folk Origin
Adapted by : Richard Kentopp, 2008.

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Also one of the most popular hymn of the last few centuries, this is one of our favorites at Servant Church.  This version features the beautiful Molly Beaird on vocals.  I have a couple of friends who claim this song as their ‘life prayer’.  I’m not exactly sure what a ‘life prayer’ is but if its something that you want to say to God every morning to keep you on track, then sign me up.

Key Lyric: Let thy goodness like a fetter bind my wandering heart to thee!

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