About 2 years ago Roy Salmond who produced my CD LIGHT UP THE SKY said to me ‘Bob Bennett had an idea and I like it – the 25th anniversary of Steve Bell’s first recording COMFORT MY PEOPLE is coming up and we should do a tribute CD’.
It’s really difficult to articulate the influence that Steve has had on my life. When I was a teen I attended a weekly Sunday night service he led at Youth For Christ. His band rocked. His charisma was engaging. His musicality was inspiring. And he led me to love Jesus and all the good-ness, truth and beauty that came with that. Funny enough, he even cared enough to remember my girl-friends name. To me that meant he paid attention…he cared about some starry eyed punk musician. It made an impression.
Fast forward a bunch of years (I won’t say how many) and here I found myself listening to Steve Bell songs trying to pick the perfect, seminal ‘Steve’ song that would fit me and would honour this man that has influenced and brought that good-ness truth and beauty to countless audiences everywhere, not to mention his own peers. And then it dawned on me.
The 25th anniversary of Comfort My People. What’s the perfect song choice? Well, the title track of course! I could not believe that none of the other incomparable artists had scooped this tune. So I made a demo of the song, sent it to Roy for consideration and a few weeks later I was at Whitewater Productions in Vancouver recording the song.
So, that’s the history, and here’s what I want to tell you about this tune. COMFORT MY PEOPLE is inspired by Isaiah 40, where the prophet Isaiah is quoted ‘Comfort, comfort my people says your God’…what follows is a passage of poetry and prophecy that points us to the greatness, compassion and justice of God in a very profound way. I can see why Steve wrote a song from this text. Read the whole chapter – you’ll be amazed.
It ends triumphantly saying ‘but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint…’ What a promise! It is often quoted and I can see why.
There’s so much more here…why not read the text again…and listen to the song…and see what good-ness, truth and beauty you find in it for you today. Enjoy a free listen and view the ‘making of’ on my YouTube channel, and thanks for supporting the music by purchasing my version of COMFORT MY PEOPLE available on iTunes.