Your Favor Rests Upon Me…

Future-2-If I Could Leave This Place

Your Favor

I finished my record.  I was done.  We headed to Seattle, for our daughter’s wedding.  She married the love of her life.  It was wonderful!

Do I use the word “wonderful” too much?

While there, my wife, who was doing the flowers for the wedding, had to pick up all the flowers, greens, etc. for the wedding.  While checking in to our Air BnB, she thought, “Maybe we can see if we can find some more greens to go with the flowers.”  I didn’t know the green parts weren’t part of the flowers.  Greens and flowers are – not…  the same thing…

Anyway, there were wooded walking paths all around our neighborhood.  So – maybe?

So while putting things away, we could hear a chainsaw, or some sort of gas-powered tool.  We head out on our walk – and along the walk path are greens – CUT DOWN.  EVERYWHERE.  God literally placed all the greens we could need, at our feet!

I mean – ALL OF THEM.  P picked up more than she needed, and left a ton more than that on the trail!  Here is one pic, so you can see what I’m talking about.
IMG_2931

And that is just part of what my wife pulled together, from what was left for us.

God is so good…  I don’t typically think of things like this, or get caught up in the fascination of things like this.  But God – just TOOK CARE OF IT for us.  Wow…

Your favor, Lord, rests upon us…

So we’re heading to the store, to pick up flowers.  And we have to potentially cancel the order for greens, because we have enough now.  As we start to feel a little guilty, my wife gets a voicemail – no phone ring, just a voicemail.  It happens, we’ve all had it happen.

“Um – Mrs. Haj-nas-eee-wic – Haj-nas-erts – um, we got your roses, but – so sorry…  We couldn’t get any of the greens.  So sorry….”

!!!!!

God takes care of us.  Lord, your favor rests upon us…

I did not intend to write a song for Stella and Cody.  I mean – I DID.  But when my original idea went somewhere else, I did not consider writing another song.  I thought I was done.  I did not intend to write a worship song – when I couldn’t come up with anything, I thought I was done.

Then this…

I wrote most of it in Seattle, came home and wrote the verses.  I recorded myself plunking piano awkwardly, which fits the song.  This is probably my favorite song.  Because it reminds me of that beautiful day.  Of the way God’s favor was and is on Cody and Stella.  Of how God’s favor is on us…

God is so good….

Your Favor
Though I see through darkened glass
I will trust in You
Though I can’t forget my past
I will dwell on You
It seems the days turn into years
As Years go by as days
And as I rejoice through my tears
I delight in all Your ways

And as I stumble awkwardly
Through life
Toward You…
You give my greatest friend to me…
Someone who mirrors You

Your favor rests upon me…

Song written:  August 9, 14, 2017
Song recorded:  August 14, 2017
Song first released:  August 15, 2017

Your Favor

You can pre-order my new record here!  If you pre-order today, you’ll get EVERY song on it today!  Almost a week before everyone else!  🙂

Advertisements

Come Away With Me, My Darling…

Future-2-If I Could Leave This Place

Longing For the Northern Wind

My wife…

Sigh…

I could spend hours just thinking about her.  How cute she is.  How funny she is.  How amazingly gifted she is (She can do almost anything).  How amazingly GIVING she is…

My wife…

We both long for time away together.  So when we get it, we spend a lot of time talking about how wonderful it is.  It is nice that she likes me as much as I like her…  If she didn’t, that would be awkward…  🙂

Wanna see how much she likes me?
16836387_10155064261121952_8171662104441286524_o

That much…  🙂

This song is a play on Song of Solomon, and a tribute to our favorite place to visit together – Blue Fin Bay on the North Shore of Minnesota.  Wonderful, wonderful!

Sigh…

I reached out to Toby Wilson to play pedal steel again, as well as dobro.  What a wonderful addition to the song!  And then I wanted some cool harmonica – the kind you hear on Willie Nelson songs.  I went to Fiverr again – and found this young man who lives in India, goes by the name Divyarat (No last name).  I’m pretty sure he just recorded to his laptop in his apartment livingroom.  But it sounds SO good!  And he’s super talented!  I think he made the song what it is.

My wife does not cry when she hears this one.  But her eyes, they do smile.  Just like they do when she looks at me…

Longing For the Northern Wind
Never saw a sight so beautiful
As the way you look at me
Your eyes they smile so wide
And your love you cannot hide

Come away with me, my darling
For the northern wind is calling
I’ll place a seal on your heart
For your love alone I’m longing

All I wanna do is to know you
To know everything about you
I can’t remember anything before you
And I wouldn’t wanna try

Come away with me, my darling
For the northern wind is calling
I’ll place a seal on your heart
For your love alone I’m longing

I would do anything
Just to be with you…

Song written:  May 21, 2017
Song recorded:  May 21, 26, 28, 29, 2017
Song first released:  May 27, 2017

Musicians:
Toby Wilson – Pedal Steel Guitar, Dobro
Divyarat – Harmonica

Longing For the Northern Wind

You can pre-order my new record here!

God, You Make Things New…

Future-2-If I Could Leave This Place

I Give Myself

This song was going to be for Stella and Cody, as they got married in Seattle.  I planned to write it while in Seattle, and it would be my sort of “post wedding tribute”.  I had the title, and an idea of what to write about.  But I wanted to save it, so I could “write it in the moment”.  I’m kinda weird like that, I know.

God had other plans…

This song is for some very dear friends of mine.  They went through some of the most horrific, painful things any married couple could endure.  It’s not my story to tell.  I will say however, God is bigger than us, and their marriage is evidence of this.  In a world like ours, with all the quick judgement and saving face that we fall into, they should no longer be married.  But their faithfulness to Jesus, and more important – HIS to them – is the reason they are fighting for their marriage.

And guess what? Every one of us who is married, has, is, or WILL go through something like this.  It may not be as monumental.  It may be worse.  But in the moment, it sure will feel like it’s the end, or should be the end.  What will you do?  Will you fight your spouse?  Or will you fight FOR your spouse?  Will you give up?  Or will you give in to your Lord and Savior?  Will you let your marriage die?  Or will you LAY DOWN YOUR LIFE for your spouse?

It’s a daily, often hourly, choice.  God is good, and He makes all things new.  This song is a great encouragement for all married couples.  Put Jesus first, so you can put your spouse first.

I was blessed to have my dear friend Katianna Carlon sing this one with me, and my other dear friend Spencer Bernard play the blistering guitar solo.  They made an ok song great!

Dear friends, I love you, and pray for you all the time.

T.

I Give Myself
If I had a million years
To make up in a day
I’d do it all
I’d give it all
If I caused a million tears
I’d wipe each one away
I’d do it all
I’d give my all

Grace, it covers
Grace, it washes you clean
New, God You make things
New, I give myself to you…

I don’t know how we got here
I wonder, is it me?
But I promise
To take you home
I give myself to you
I give myself anew
Will you have me?

Grace, it covers
Grace, it washes you clean
New, God You make things
New, I give myself to you…

I give myself to you…

Song written:  May 7, 2017
Song recorded:  May 7, 20, 22, June 30, 2017
Song first released:  May 7, 2017

Musicians:
Katianna Carlon – Vocals
Spencer Bernard – Guitar Solo

I Give Myself

You can pre-order my new record here!

My Heart Is In Memphis…

Future-2-If I Could Leave This Place

My Heart Is In Memphis

Almost a year ago, Adam and Kate were married.  What an amazing day, from the bluegrass band they had playing PRE-WEDDING, to the house the stayed in, to the yard they got married in two houses down, to the walk Adam led us on to HIS BRIDE, to the amazing (A- MAY- ZING!) food, to the dancing and laughter.  Beautiful, brilliant and wonderful.

One thing I loved, was watching Adam and his mama dancing late in the evening.  It really was sweet, and I could not take my eyes off them.  To see the joy in my wife’s face, dancing with her son…

Wanna see?  I am stealing this pic from someone, so I ask for forgiveness in advance…

15042028_10104432063141890_3800040812757858550_o

Isn’t that just tremendously heart-warming?

So – P adores her kids.  And Adam and Kate are way too far away.  They moved to Seattle, then to Memphis – WAY TOO FAR AWAY.  It is such a wonderful time when we get to see them, and so crushing to my wife when we separate.

I wrote this song for Adam, from P’s perspective.  I tried to capture how she feels, and I kept thinking of the picture above, as I was writing.

My wife cries every time she hears it, and turns it off – she just can’t…

My friend Tony (the challenger…) suggested I find someone to play pedal steel on this.  So I did!  Toby Wilson lives in the UK, and offers his services (pedal steel, dobro, acoustic guitar, etc.) on a site called Fiverr.  I first learned of Fiverr from another friend of mine, Spencer Bernard, who suggested I look into it for musicians who play those instruments I cannot myself.  Great ideas Tony and Spencer!

I really, really love how this song turned out.  And there I go again with making my wife cry…

My Heart Is In Memphis
My child, don’t you worry
If you can’t make it for Christmas
I’ll keep the phone line open
Just to hear your voice again

My child, you’re all grown up…
And I can’t stop it if I try
Still you’ll always be my son
And I ain’t gonna lie

Oh and I
I wanna dance with you forever
And hear your laughter fill the room
It’s all these memories that I treasure as I long for you…
My heart is in memphis…

My child, don’t you stop
Love your woman
When times are harder than you thought
You would ever have to bear

My child you’re all grown up
And the pain is part of growin’
But the pain won’t kill your joy
Oh, you’ll always be my boy

Oh and I
I wanna dance with you forever
And hear your laughter fill the room
It’s all these memories that I treasure as I long for you…
My heart is in memphis…

Song written:  March 17, 2017
Song recorded:  March 17, April 7, 2017
Song first released:  March 18, 2017
Single released:  April 7, 2017

Musicians:
Toby Wilson – Pedal Steel Guitar

My Heart Is In Memphis

You can pre-order my new record here!

 

For Devon…

Future-2-If I Could Leave This Place

God Be With Me

This is the first song I wrote for this collection.  The story goes like this:

Some time in December, our nephew Devon, stationed in San Diego CA, asked my wife, “Tell Ted I’d like him to write me a song.  Make it a country song”.

At first, I was a bit intimidated.  I have never written a song on demand.  And a country song?

Then I thought, why not?

I quickly tossed the country song idea – would love to write country songs, but I don’t think I can intentionally write one.  This made it easier to just put something down – the result being “God Be With Me”, or the working title, “For Devon”.

I wrote the song in one sitting, and recorded and mixed over three days.  The song was finished and delivered to Devon on New Year’s Day, January 1, 2017.  I made his mom and my wife cry.  I too write the songs that make the young girls cry…

I really like this song, and I really really like Devon.  He’s a good egg.  A bit wild, a bit rebellious.  But good people all the same.

A note:  Devon was discharged from the Marines, due to back issues.  Total bummer.  But he’ll always be a Marine to me.  Semper Fi, young man!

God Be With Me
Out on a mission
From boy to man
Family I’m missing
In this foreign land

God before me
My brothers behind me
God be with me

My father, he worries
My mother, she cries
But the world is a dark place
And my oath is right

God before me
My brothers behind me
God be with me

Tell my mama she don’t have to cry
I’ll be home soon
And you say, “Semper Fi”

God before me
God behind me
God be with me

Song written:  December 23, 2016
Song recorded:  December 29, 30, 31, 2016
Song first released:  January 1, 2017

God Be With Me

You can pre-order my new record here!

Song Story #8 – Wedding Coat

sins-of-the-father-final

Wedding Coat

A little more than a year ago, I released a record called “The Wedding Coat“.  The record was written from the perspective of marriage, divorce, the pain around that.  It was a response to not only my past, but seemingly so many that I love, going through similar things.  I did a campaign around that record, ultimately raising $3000 for marriage counseling.  My hope was, and is, that God would use that for SOMEONE.   Some couple, or couples, where money might be the obstacle to getting help.  I still believe that the God who raised the dead to life can restore a dead marriage.

By the way – I’ve seen it with my own eyes, very recently.  God is so good…

So this song, I wrote with the theme of wrapping up the record.  The first verse was my past, how I treated my ex-wife.  Many can relate.  Some would still be proud of that.  Some, like me, not so much.

The second verse is actually my son-in-law.  See, at their wedding (an outdoor wedding in October, and we had SNOW.  It was COLD).  He stopped their wedding, mid-swing, to take his coat off and put it on his bride.  I still tear up, when I think of it…

The last verse is Christ, and we are His bride.

So – a couple things.

  1.  This song.  The original version is acoustic.  I wrote it that way.  I recorded it live, with a mic on me and another on my guitar.

    Note:  The original recording is actually two takes spliced together. If you listen closely, you can hear where I spliced together.  🙂

    Anyway, I played this song at a show last spring.  A friend came up to me, commenting on how he loved the song.  He told me, “Man, I hear a full band doing this song…”.  Huh…  I’d never thought of that…  So I did.  🙂

  2. These two records.  When I put together the “Wedding Coat” record, I would have loved to have done a full length.  I just didn’t have enough material.  In FACT – when I was writing, I wasn’t even planning on doing the record, or the campaign.  I was working on another record at the time.  And most of the songs on the “Wedding Coat” record were slated for that one.  I pulled them out, making two records.

    I did record some covers, that would have fit into the “Wedding Coat” concept.  But they weren’t my songs, so I opted to just give them away to those who supported the campaign instead.

    Then, I started writing new songs.  And the material for “Sins of the Father” materialized.  I thought, “THESE songs could have been side two of ‘the Wedding Coat'”!  Alas, it was a year later.

    So I think of this new record of mine as “the Wedding Coat, Part Deux”.  Where “The Wedding Coat” was about marriage, “Sins of the Father” is about family.  To me, they go hand in hand.

So to me, it seemed appropriate to do a full-on electric version of this song.  I really love how it turned out.  And so did my friend.  🙂

So there you have it!  That’s my new record.  Hope you enjoy!

Love you!

T.

Wedding Coat
I’m gonna buy myself a wedding coat
My life is over now, that’s all she wrote
I am no longer free, she killed my joy
Sucked the life from me, gave her a girl and boy

Toil and heartache is all you gain
A lifetime’s wages, such a waste…
Why am I so selfish, so self-absorbed?
There must be something better…
Better, Lord…

I’m gonna give my woman my wedding coat
To keep her safe and warm, this world is cold
But she belongs to me, I’d die for her
And a family we soon will birth

Joy and goodness, you give to us
What can I do, Lord, to measure up?
Why am I so blessed, so favored Lord?
There must be someone else…
Someone else…

I’m gonna waive my banner over you
You are my bride, I made you new
By my blood you gain my holiness
And my wedding coat shall be your dress…
And my wedding coat shall be your dress…

And my righteousness shall be your dress…

Wedding Coat

Song Story #7 – This Is Weird…

sins-of-the-father-final

The Lord Has Won My Soul

This song…  Is…

Weird…

I did not intend it to be.  I had the title, and the line came from it, “I’m gold, for I know the Lord has won my soul!”.  I really liked it.  It is a play on the passage in Romans 8:

For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
(Romans 8:38-39)

But then, as I was playing it, it sounded too much like an older gospel song we do in worship from time to time, called “Bless the Lord”.  Like this:

Now, I’m not opposed to “borrowing” from songs or songwriters – there is no original thought.  And I am sure I sound like a pale comparison of my favorite artists.  But this was just too close for me.

So I decided to scrap the song, and instead use it as an odd transition piece.

The last song, “Shedding My Skin” , ends with a hallelujah chorus, because the subject of the song is finally free from the shackles of life on earth and are before their heavenly Father.

So I thought it appropriate to get ridiculous and praise the Lord as ridiculously as I could.  I mean – when I’m before Him, won’t I be filled with awe and wonder?  And – with COMPLETE PRAISE?  I mean, no holding back, I’m before YOU, LORD!  HALLELUJAH!

So – I thought, why not?  Why not make it completely weird?

Why not put peacocks in the song…

And it transitions right into the last song on the record.  More to come on that one…

See, I like to make complete records, not just collections of songs.  So it’s important to me that they flow in some way.  Whether that be stylistically, or thematically – I want to try and create a story with my records.  I don’t know that anyone else would get that?  But that is my goal.  So – given that, this song ain’t so weird.

And who is Joe Pyeweed anyway?  More on that some day in the future…  😉

The Lord Has Won My Soul