Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Down the rabbit hole with musician Eric Wyse

The other day I purchased at Marc's for $1.50 a Christmas CD, "Log Cabin Christmas; 20 songs of the season performed in simple folk styles."  It's really lovely, and quite relaxing.
So in deciding to mention it on my blog, I needed to do a little research.  I chose the name of one of the producers, Eric Wyse, because the rest of the production, musicians, and location stuff didn't look too promising-- Barbour publishing, licensed from Classic Fox Records, made in the USA (in Uhrichsville, Ohio).

What a find.  Wyse is a song writer and pianist, and I'm not sure about how much production he does on the side, but I've enjoyed listening to his Christian music.  These are called "rabbit holes" when you get an idea and it takes you to places you didn't know you needed to go.  From his home page:
An accomplished keyboardist, songwriter, church musician, and record and video producer, Eric Wyse will complete 19 years of service as Organist/Choirmaster (1994-2001) and Director of Music/Organist (2001-2013) at St. Bartholomew's Episcopal Church in Nashville, Tennessee June 2013. In September,  he will begin a new position as Director of Music/Organist at St. Michael’s Church in Charleston, SC.
As a pianist, Eric has recorded the best-selling  "Reflections" series of solo piano music with sales in excess of 200,000 units. His organ work was featured on the worship project "City on a Hill - Sing Alleluia".
He is best known, perhaps, as the co-writer of the modern hymn, "Wonderful, Merciful Savior," written in 1989 with his wife, Dawn Rodgers. Recorded by numerous Christian artists including Selah, Phillips Craig & Dean, Kari Jobe, Anthony Evans, Kathy Troccoli, Travis Cottrell, and Clay Cross, the song received a 2002 Gospel Music Association Dove Award nomination for “Inspirational Song of the Year”. It appears in many new hymnals, including Rejoice Hymns (Majesty Music, 2011), Songs for Worship and Praise (2010, Taylor Publications), The Baptist Hymnal (2008, LifeWay Worship), Hymns for a Pilgrim People (GIA/NAACC, 2007), and The Christian Life Hymnal (Hendrickson, 2006). Other songs written by Eric include "Lamb of God (Angus Dei)" recorded by BeBo Norman and Mark Hall & Megan Garrett (Casting Crowns) and his setting of the Lord's Prayer, "Our Father in Heaven", which is gaining acceptance in churches across the country.
An award-winning producer and consultant in recording and video production, Eric has worked with a variety of artists, including Keith & Kristyn Getty, Brooklyn Tabernacle Choir, CeCe Winans, Amy Grant, Donnie McClurkin, and Hee Haw’s LuLu Roman. In 2007, he produced a critically acclaimed full-length London recording of Handel's Messiah with British conductor John Rutter, featuring The Cambridge Singers & Royal Philharmonic Orchestra.
 And even after researching it, I still have no idea who the musicians are for this CD.  I do think that is an oversight. They are good. So, after wandering around that rabbit hole, I decided to look at Uhrichsville, Ohio, a town I'd never heard of.  What I found was a wonderful Christian publishing company, named Barbour.
Faithfulness to the Bible and Jesus Christ are the bedrock values behind every book Barbour's staff produces from its 115,000-square foot facilities in Uhrichsville, Ohio. When the company's unit sales reached fourteen million in a fiscal year, Martins commented, "I'm really excited about that figure. That's fourteen million Christian books - not fourteen million hamburgers, or fourteen million cars, or fourteen million computers. It's fourteen million books sharing the message of Christ!"
What a fun search. And all for $1.50 from a remaindered supply at Marc's.

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