Deep Waters – Part 4

LIGHTHOUSE---SMOOTH-SAILINGThe third song of this trilogy, A Still Small Voice, is from First Kings in the Bible.  I wrote the song many years ago for an Off-Broadway musical that I wrote and directed called The River that played both in New York City and at the Lincoln Center Out-Of-Doors Summer Festival in the early 1980s.  It was a show-stopping ballad that referenced the much loved Bible verses, “And after the earthquake a fire; but the Lord was not in the fire: and after the fire a still small voice.”

The song was sung by two wondrous African-American vocalists (one at Lincoln Center/the other in the Off-Broadway production) — both who added gorgeous embellishments to the melody in their inimitable Gospel style.

Though I loved what they each brought to the song, I always felt that the song could stand on its own and needed to have that chance in its life.

So it was an easy call to dig it out, dust it off and hand it over to Ms Wade to perform on this new CD, Deep Waters. 

It’s a song about listening … listening for the voice of God whispering through the silence.  It’s a song about stillness and the inner voice that comes to us with messages of truth – if we can just quiet down the ego, or mortal mind, enough to listen through the silence.

We recorded the song just last week.  Julia brought all that I knew she would to the song and more.  The session was so delicate, so quiet, that I was most grateful for our super quiet vocal booth we have here in our studio in NYC.  No noises from the outside, no subway rumbles, no sirens, no air conditioner noise – just the silence of a quiet mind.

Singing pianissimo is not an easy endeavor.  It requires great energy.  One wouldn’t think that, but it is oh so true.  Perhaps it requires even more focused energy than a soaring ballad.  It requires a perfect kind of control that few singers have at that amplitude level.  It took us four hours to record the song to get the close-mic techniques practiced and mastered.  We had to work to even diminish the natural mouth noise of opening and shutting the lips to keep the recording clean and free from any sound that would get in the way of the message and the performance.

This was all accomplished in a masterly fashion by Julia who added, on top of it all, a beautiful and inspired performance of the song itself.  The song now lives, once again, but in its original intention and original simplicity of melody.

It’s a song about the act of healing, about meditation and prayer, but most of all it’s a song about one’s inward listening to the voice of God.

A Still Small Voice
Adapted from 1 Kings
Music and Lyrics by Peter Link

There is something in the stillness
Calling softly to me
Even though I’m all alone
And the sound is like nothing
I’ve ever heard or seen
And it’s calling from the deep unknown

Then the mountains move
And the cold wind roars
And the fire fills the sky
But temptation always passes by

Leaving something in the stillness
Calling softly to me
‘Woman don’t you run and hide
You shall not be afraid
You can trust in me
If you listen to the voice inside’

“When the mountains move
And the cold wind roars
And the fire fills the sky
The temptation always passes by
If you listen to me’

It’s a still small voice
Oh a still small voice
Oh a still small voice
Calling to me

It’s a still small voice
Oh a still small voice
Oh a still small voice
Calling to me

There is something in the silence
When I quiet my mind
And the water’s rolling over me
And the hush it is endless
And the song runs free
And the voice is like a melody

And the time shall come
When the choice is made
And the voice deep inside
Will stay with me and be my guide
Through the waters ahead

It’s a still small voice
Oh a still small voice
Oh a still small voice
Calling to me

It’s a still small voice
Oh a still small voice
Can you hear it?
It’s a still small voice
Calling to me

Can you hear it calling?

 

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