You know him from his amazing big band work as well as his stint as judge on American Idol. But now, Harry Connick Jr. has come out of the pandemic with a full faith-based album in which he wrote, arranged, and played on all the songs.
CCM Magazine sat down with Harry to talk about this brand new project....
Harry shared his personal journey in creating this singular musical work in his liner notes, re-printed below.
HARRY CONNICK JR Personal Statement:
In March 2020, right after news of the pandemic hit, when my tour was cancelled and I headed home for however long it would last, I decided to record some music. Not only because I wanted to, but because I needed to. With no tour dates in sight, and with everyone’s realities upended and futures uncertain, recording was what was necessary for me to help guide me through the uncharted odyssey in which we all unexpectedly found ourselves. I found myself alone (with my faith!) in my home studio, surrounded by instruments and gear, bursting with an abundance of ideas. I was able to go deep within myself as a musician and a man, uninterrupted by the normalcies of collaboration or human interaction. It was a sort of “musical isolation chamber”, a silent retreat, the silence only broken by the sound of my own voice, the instruments I played and the occasional microphone I inadvertently knocked over, as I’m not the most graceful recording engineer that ever lived!
Seven months later, after countless tracks and edits, I can say that it was not only the secluded nature of the recording process, but the content of the songs themselves that helped me through this strange period. In fact, this was the first time that I found this level of comfort, peace and truth throughout the process of making music. Because the lyrics are all about the spectrum of faith, I found myself interpreting them in real time - they were allowing me to heal as much as I wanted them to help heal others. I didn't have to pretend or put myself in another place or time, as one often does as a singer or actor.
Besides the familiar, traditional songs, I wrote and recorded new music that tells the story of my experience during the lockdown. I, like most of us, felt joy, sadness, doubt, conviction, melancholy and inspiration - all the emotions that faith, or lack thereof, can elicit. Even though many of the songs are Christian, my hope is that they will resonate with people of all faiths, as it gives me great comfort to know that faith is an immeasurably beautiful gift that, with its universal spirit, can help bring us together in the most arduous of times.