Wednesday, January 13, 2010

A Case For Repetition...

I've been thinking a good bit about songwriting lately. (That tends to happen when you decide to record a new album!)

When writing a collection songs, most writers work hard at avoiding repetition. A songwriter wants each song to be something fresh, something unique from the others. But a recent CD purchase has forced me to rethink my position on too much of the same thing.

I've been a fan of Sovereign Grace worship for years, but their new Sons & Daughters project is one of the best things they've ever done.

As I've listened, I've been moved by the record's repetition. The theme of this project is expertly done and presented with crystal-clear precision. works.

The whole project is filled with words and phrases like "heirs with Christ," "adopted," and "orphans." It makes for a powerful listening experience.

I understand the difference between a record like this and the songs I'm endeavoring to write. One is done in a "sampler" style wherein multiple writers come forward with their individual take on the one large theme and the other is a collection of songs to fit a congregation through a particular season of a church's life.

But it has forced me to rethink repetition in the pursuit of a cohesive theme - whether it's an album or just a set of Sundays at church. While I want to write things that are fresh, I also want to have a solid grasp of the ideas needed for a given period of creation.