Just before Christmas I got an email from a music publicist out of Nashville. She's been working with one of my all-time favorite musicians, Twila Paris, I guess getting the word out about her latest album.
I've been a Twila fan for ... let's see ... 23 years? My freshman year of college (I was a child prodigy, for those of you who are doing the math - I started college at the age of 5), I discovered Warrior is a Child and fell madly in love. The summer after I graduated, I found Runner, a phenomenal song which reached down deep to my core and held me together at a time when I was falling apart in so many ways. I'd take Bethany's taser, the Walkman, and I'd walk the neighborhood at night, listening to Runner over and over. I wore that tape clean to death. I'll paste the lyrics to Runner at the bottom of the post. And some day I'll gather the courage to remember that summer and post about it.
You have to know something about me before I review this album. Yes. It's something weird AGAIN. I have a strange relationship with music. I love it, but I can also live without it. At the same time, there's always a song running through my head. I absolutely hated the three or four weeks recently that our church ran a video with the song "Look at My Belly" running through it. That was stuck in my head for nearly a month. Agh! It's there again!
Anyway, it takes me awhile to warm up to an album. There have been a few which have claimed my soul at first listen, but very few. It usually takes about 20 listens to determine whether or not I truly like an album or an artist. And yes, if I really hate an artist, I know in the first 30 seconds.
So I took a couple of weeks to listen to Small Sacrifice, to get a feel for it, to let it seep in. This one has definitely grown on me. If I listen as background music, it's just Twila. Honestly, I wouldn't know which album. It is SO Twila. I love that about it. Beautiful lyrics, sweet vocals, soft music. Chick music.
The first song, We Know Love, really threw me off. I listened while working on a couple of things, not really giving it my full attention. I thought something was seriously wrong because I kept hearing Twila say, "Me no love." What the heck? Who forgot the grammar check? So I had to grab the case and look for the title. Now that I know what it says, I like the song. But maybe my youngest gets his auditory discrepancies from me?
Then my daughter swiped the CD and it was gone for nearly a week. At nearly 15, I was surprised she'd want to take my music. Since I've had it back, it's gone nearly everywhere with me and is right now playing in my laptop. I love it.
My two favorite songs are probably the title track, Small Sacrifice, and the last one, Alleluia. I love the chorus to Small Sacrifice:
It's one small sacrifice
I give You all my love
I give You all my life
A token for a prize
It never could be worth
The honor You deserve
This album is definitely a keeper. And as promised, the lyrics to Runner:
Courier valiant, bearing the flame
Messenger noble, sent in His name
Faster and harder, run through the night
Desperate relay, carry the light
Carry the light
Runner, when the road is long
Feel like giving in but you're hanging on
Oh runner, when the race is won
You will run into his arms
Obstacle ancient, chilling the way
Enemy wakened, stoking the fray
Still be determined, fearless and true
Lift high the standard, carry it through
Carry it through
Mindful of many waiting to run
Destined to finish what you've begun
Millions before you cheering you on
Godspeed dear runner, carry it home
Carry it home
Until I write again ...