WHERE THE GOOD WAY LIES | Steve Bell
Producers: Murray Pulver, Dave Zeglinski, Steve Bell
Project Design: Roberta Landreth (nee Hanson)
Signpost Music, 2016
Stand at the crossroads and look;
ask for the ancient paths,
ask where the good way lies, and walk in it,
and you will find rest for your souls.
My 20th career album is officially out on November 1st, and I am admittedly still astonished to be doing this work. I get a little misty if I spend any time thinking about the love and support I’ve enjoyed over the years, not least from all those who attend my concerts and buy my CDs. Thank you so much.
Where the Good Way Lies was a lot of fun to make. For little reason other than curiosity, we fired up the old analogue tape machines and recorded much of this one “old school.” Recording analogue, as opposed to digital, is a very different process. One doesn’t have infinite options and endless technical safety nets to rely on, so there is a focus and commitment required of the musicians that digital recording doesn’t demand.
This project was also fun for me in that I’ve recently picked up the trumpet again. In my youth I thought I would be a career trumpet player but eventually set it aside for the guitar and song writing. Recently, however, I started pining for the instrument I once loved and spent years on, so I got myself back in shape enough to play a bit on this recording.
Like most albums, this collection of songs is a set of life snapshots. Lyrically it covers a wide swath of ideas and emotions that one might expect from a 56 year old who is beginning to struggle with mortality while, at the same time, becoming increasingly enchanted with the eternally divine thrumming that pulses through all we know as life and goodness. There are songs here for my parents who are in their last days. There are hymns of devotion to a God who is present to us in stillness. There are invocations to love. There are celebrations of justice. There’s a farewell to a dear friend.
The title track is a bit of a departure for me. Lyrically it gives evidence of the growing influence that my Indigenous friends have had on my thinking and faith. There’s a sanity to an Indigenous worldview that challenges Western colonial Christianity to do some profound soul-searching. It’s hard but vital work: clearing the pathway of love from briers and obstacles so the way of Christ can be known and walked in a manner that honours the deep-down goodness of God and God’s creation.
Listeners will, I hope, be intrigued by the song’s inclusion of rapper Fresh IE and traditional Indigenous singer Co-Co Ray Stevenson.
To read the full story about the title track of this album visit HERE…
Life has certainly turned out to be infinitely more complex than I ever anticipated. At times it has left me bewildered and unsure. However, as I get older, I’ve become more “be-wondered” with the mystery of life, and less impressed with surety. Yet I remain convinced of the goodness of God, and of God’s son Jesus, and of the Spirit of their love that holds all things together. And I remain committed to sing of these convictions as long as my body allows and there are folks who will listen.
Below you may listen to the single from the new album: Love Is Our Way