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Jason Silver

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Thoughts and Reflections on Scripture

2016

January February April June July August September October November December

December

Friday, December 23rd, 2016
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A new friend, who recently became a supporter at Patreon.com asked me to re-record the music for Psalm 89. The first version was done at the piano without a decent microphone, and really sounded pretty horrible.

I'm happy she asked me, and happy with how it turned out. These verses from the Bible are beautiful, and seem like a prophetic indication of Jesus, who is of course from the line of David.

I pray this song helps you to commit these verses to memory, so that the Bible becomes part of your every day thoughts, and your worship stems from the very word of God.

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Thursday, December 15th, 2016
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Sometimes I'm surprised by the style and genre of music that seems to jump off the page at me. Is it inspiration? Maybe-- but It's fun to do, and keeps my creative juices flowing.

This Psalm just lent itself to a bluesy style electric guitar (thanks to my friend Sean Patterson for playing!) and a B3 Organ. I wish I had a southern gospel choir to sing along and it would be perfect...

The video started as a neat stock footage of an older film projector. The camera looks straight down the lens of the projector. I added some other Creative Commons footage of arrows, and harps, and sheep, and the universe to help describe the lyrics. I think you'll like the finished effect!

Thanks to my patrons for helping to make this happen! Roger Grant, Connie Fournier, Luni Lin, Erica Smith, Michelle Popovits, John Harvey, Bud

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Friday, December 9th, 2016
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Last Sunday afternoon I sat at the big ol’ grand piano to write the next Psalm. It was going to be a toss up between Psalm 18 and 28 and 33, all of which have yet to be completed.

28 was moderate in length, so as I said, I sat at the piano to come up with an idea. But the chord that I played kinda got misplayed, so that instead of A major 7, I played a B over A.

But I just let it ring for a minute, and thought: “that's cool!” So a new melody was born.

The Psalm is a cry out to God, like so many of them. It's also a reminder to oneself that God will protect us... I find it encouraging in my down moments to remember that I am not alone at all! God and the whole fellowship of believers is with me.

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November

Friday, November 4th, 2016
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Hey everyone, how are you today? I'm loving this new song- and the video too. I filmed it LAST autumn, actually - it's near my house along a road called “Canoe Lake Road.”

The song makes use of some amazing samples of cello, viola, and violin - as well as a really realistic grand piano.

On a more spiritual note, this song of quiet trust by David has an intimate and lovely aspect to it. He's talking to his God, and affirming his humble attitude, but he ends it by asking his whole country, the people of his faith, to keep their hope and trust in God.

As Christians, we are grafted into the house of Israel, and this song is for us too-- hope in the Lord, starting now, and never stop, ever!

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October

Friday, October 28th, 2016
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I went for a hike with three of my children - we went to Gould Lake Conservation Area, and I took my wife's cool phone, with the amazing camera! The footage I used for this lyric video was taken along the lake, where we stopped to eat our apples and drink from our water bottles.

I removed the audio track of the video, but in it my daughter Grace asks me about the meaning of one of my videos... I love it that my kids are intelligent, thinking people!

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September

Thursday, September 29th, 2016
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Boney M has made this psalm famous, so many people know the title “By the Rivers of Babylon,” even if they don't realize that it's a lyric taken from Psalm 137.

I've tried to do what I always do; to faithfully stick to the original words of the ancient Psalm, even if the words seem awkward to sing, violent, “unchristian,” or generally inappropriate. I think it's more important to stick to the original intent of the lyricist / psalmist, and try to understand where they were coming from than it is to be politically correct and lose the original intent.

These words mean a lot to me because I'm a musician, and I've found myself in a type of captivity or exile.

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Thursday, September 29th, 2016
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The title is a bit of a “teaser” - obviously, I believe that there IS a god. Just as this psalmist claims, it strikes me as quite foolish to assert there is no god.

It's interesting, because I've been speaking to a new friend recently, who is very interested in philosophy. We've been speaking about religion and faith, and he claimed to have once been an ardent atheist, moved on to agnostic, and presently sees himself as a pantheist. He's on a journey, and though I didn't say so to him, I wouldn't be surprised to see his faith eventually lead him to Jesus.

While I understand why people choose atheism as an approach to life, it seems so arrogant to me. Just as one may claim it's impossible to know if there is a god, I would argue it is equally impossible to know if there is not a God. Agnostic seems a much more rational approach to theism. It's humble, it's not antagonistic.

Let's be honest here: we believe that even faith is a gift given by God. He reveals himself to us in his own time. Let's pray for our antagonistic, atheist, and agnostic friends that God will give them faith.

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Thursday, September 1st, 2016
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It was about 1914.

My grandfather, Earl Abrams, was six months old when his father was killed in the old Lacey mine, north of Sydenham. His mother moved in with her brother and sister, but died shortly thereafter, from the Spanish Influenza of 1918. He and his sister were now alone in this world.

This video is of that property.

There's not much to see-- the structure that is still standing is of the hen-house. In the sixties, the house burned to the ground with my grandfather's aunt still inside. She had left a note in the mailbox that the house was on fire, and for the post-man to send help.

We are such frail and temporary creatures. We lay foundations, only to have them be destroyed. And God, in his holy temple sees all of humankind, and the upright will someday see his face.

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August

Saturday, August 27th, 2016
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As I do these songs each week, one of the challenges is to keep it sounding fresh, and though nearly exactly like “I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For,” it's a different, fresher style for me.

My family were listening to U2's top songs recently, and Joanne said, “You need to do a style like U2.” So here it is!

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July

Saturday, July 9th, 2016
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This psalm is a little different in style- kind of a bluegrass thing going on.

My wife is singing harmony with me, and this is the first time I tried playing fiddle on a recording - I know it's pretty terrible, but I don't know any fiddle players available on short notice.

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June

Wednesday, June 15th, 2016
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I've been a sucker for Irish-style music and haunting penny-whistle for a long time. There's something about this music that plucks at the old heart-strings, this much is certain.

The words of this Psalm are comforting to us, because we all have felt depressed from time to time. I love these words:

Why are you cast down, O my soul,
and why are you disquieted within me?

I pray this Psalm is a comfort to you.

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April

Friday, April 29th, 2016
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The video I recorded for this Psalm originally was of a little abandoned church in Wilmer, Ontario.

There's something sad and haunting about all these empty, little churches. I don't know if it's a common sight in other parts of the world but they seem to be everywhere around here.

I suppose it's not that unusual, since so many people have stopped believing in and worshipping God.

It was a beautiful, snowy Sunday afternoon, and I was driving home after playing organ in a church in Westport, Ontario. Everywhere I went was a potential postcard, but I didn't bother stopping anywhere until I came to this church.

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February

Wednesday, February 24th, 2016
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I am really happy with this song ... not necessarily my performance of it, which I'm never completely satisfied with for any song, but I like the style of song where there's a hooky piano part, and a different melody for the vocal line. It's just pretty to me, I guess.

I hope that it's also worshipful and a blessing for you!

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January

Wednesday, January 27th, 2016
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Psalm 67 is nice and short, and well suited to a contemporary style song. It has a repeating section that I have given to “the congregation", as well as a kind of conclusion section at the end that's like a bridge.

I decided to just use my computer to record this one-- I didn't feel like dragging all the sound equipment down to the big piano in the living room, and so I used software synthesizers in the computer and a little 24 key controller keyboard. The drums are done using a program called Hydrogen, and all the synth sounds are from a program called ZynAddSubFX. I also used something called Linux Sampler for the main piano sound.

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