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Great Hymns with a Fresh Touch - CD
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"Great Hymns with a Fresh Touch" - this CD is just what the title implies - some of the greatest hymns to hit the hymnals from the 16th to the 20th centuries. It brings together all of the best elements of Jerry's other recordings combined including grandiose orchestral settings drawing from Martin Luther and J.S. Bach and even Beethoven. Other moments feature subtle touches of jazz, ethnic and just piano - plain and simple.
 
  • Joyful, Joyful We Adore Thee - Jerry found a driving jazz groove and slipped in this Beethoven piece from his Ninth Symphony.
  • Amazing Grace - oo, what the Celtic flute does to this enticing arrangement.  It builds to a peak and comes back home.
  • Praise God From Whom All Blessings Flow / Praise to the Lord the Almighty - big orchestration of two great hymns but with a surprising interlude playing on the immortal four notes of Beethoven's Fifth Symphony.
  • His Eye Is on the Sparrow - so a propos for the day in which we live.  From the very first notes of the arrangement, it evokes pictures of sparrows fluttering in the trees. This arrangement stands alone with no orchestra whatsoever.
  • A Mighty Fortress Is Our God - this piece has to be done in grandiose style; appropriately it brings in strains of the "Hallelujah Chorus" in the last 16 bars.
  • Beneath the Cross of Jesus - lush! Just plain lush with gorgeous oboe lines.
  • The Old Rugged Cross - amazing what 4/4 meter and a gentle Latin touch can do to remove any of the triteness of this old hymn. It's what Jerry means by "fresh touch.''
  • Holy, Holy, Holy - this arrangement is more than a hint of African flavor - straight from the Congo.  Clearly Jerry was influenced by their mission trips to Central Africa.
  • O Sacred Head Now Wounded very traditional string arrangement.
  • This Is My Father's World - what do you do to freshen up this old hymn?  Give it some Dave Brubeck 'Take Five' 5/4 meter.  An incredibly energized treatment.
  • I Bowed On My Knees and Cried Holy - coming out of the 20th century, this one retains much of its original feel with gorgeous string support.
  • Dear Lord and Father of Mankind - much the same style as "Beneath the Cross of Jesus."
  • How Great Thou Art - now this arrangement has it all.  Starting very mysterioso in the verse, it shifts gears to a more traditional chorus feel. Then it begins an energetic drive that carries it toward a grand finale orchestral finish.  A huge arrangement.
  • Just As I Am - tender, sensitive, plaintive, simply piano!

 

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