The music was written in
and is an attempt to deal with the events of that first Resurrection
Day (the day often referred to as Easter Day) and takes us on a journey
through the day from before the dawn through to the appearance of Jesus
to those in the upper room that evening and then beyond to what that
day means to the world.
This is the prologue or introduction to the work. The music starts in a
peaceful way but, gradually, an undercurrent of turmoil starts to rise
through the music that demonstrates the battle against death. Finally
the music “explodes” as Jesus conquers death, takes the victory and the
resurrection takes place.
There are two ‘streams’ of music in
the build up. In the one channel is the peace and tranquillity music
which sets the original scene but after two times (the second with
harmony to the melody) it slowly fades to oblivion, gradually losing
its dominance. In the other channel the ‘turmoil stream’ starts very
softly but builds up until in the final time through it is the only
music left. The two streams then merge into one for the finale of the
prologue when death is conquered and the stone is rolled away, freeing
Jesus from the tomb and from death.
Both styles of music are
contrasting but the same sequencing. The peace and tranquillity is
dominated by the use of the pan pipe for both the melody and harmony
and it has a soft electric piano chord set and a gentle drum track. In
contrast, the turmoil stream uses a distorted guitar melody and chord
set along with much harsher rock style drumming.
The women rise early that Sunday morning to carry the prepared spices
to the tomb to prepare Jesus’ body for burial. There is a real air of
sadness in this song as they are heading off for what they perceive as
their final farewell to the one who has been their teacher and guide
for the past few years as they have travelled with Jesus throughout
Galilee and Israel.
AT THE TOMB:
The women arrive and are surprised that the stone has already been
rolled away. An angel appears to them to tell them that Jesus is not
there but that He has risen and that they need to tell the disciples.
Confusion is the key word to describe the feelings of the women.
They hurry back to where the disciples are gathered and tell them what
has happened but their news is received with much scepticism by the
5. PETER AND JOHN AT THE
Peter and John, however, decide to check out what the women have told
them and race off to the tomb to see for themselves. They arrive (John
first) and Peter goes in first and sees that it is truly empty but that
the clothes Jesus had been wrapped in were still there. John also sees
the same when he enters. There is a special note that the clothes had
not just fallen but were neatly folded.
In the ways of Jewish tradition, when the master of the house left the
table he would do one of two things. If he was finished, the napkin
would be scrunched up and thrown at the side of the place setting and
the servants would know to clear away the table. If, however, he was to
come back, the napkin was neatly folded and the servants would know
that the master would return to the table.
Mary had followed (possibly with the other women) Peter and John back
to the tomb. After the men had left (we are told that Mary stayed),
Mary notes that two men, dressed in white, are sitting where Jesus had
been laid. She challenges them about the whereabouts of His body. A
voice from behind causes her to turn and, assuming this is the
gardener, she asks where the body of Jesus has been taken. Only then is
she allowed to see that this is Jesus. He consoles her and assures her
of things to come now He is alive again. This is the first appearance
of Jesus after His resurrection and it is interesting to note that it
is to women and not to men that Jesus chooses this first appearance.
Women may have not held any real importance in society at that time in
history, but they held special importance to Jesus.
8. JESUS APPEARS TO
This is an interesting appearance as it occupies just one verse (Luke
24:34) and we can only assume what may have occurred at this occasion.
We are told that Peter was entrusted with the Keys of death/life and
that part of this meeting could be for Jesus to take back those keys
now that He had conquered death. All we can assume was that this was an
encouragement and instruction meeting for Peter. All of this, however,
is pure speculation and I decided that a pure instrumental track was
needed so that no assumptions were passed on to others through what a
vocal track may have conveyed. The music has contrast as the soothing
voice of Jesus speaks (twice at first) then followed by two different
music styles for Peter, endeavouring to show he must have been feeling.
THE ROAD TO EMMAUS:
Two of the disciples were returning to the small village of Emmaus just
a short distance from Jerusalem. Understandably, they were deep in
discussion about the events of the last three days. Jesus joins them in
their walk, though they are not permitted to recognise Him. After
having these two tell Him why they are so sad, Jesus takes them through
all the scriptures that had pointed to these very events. Still they
did not recognise Him. As it was on dusk when they arrived at Emmaus,
the two disciples do the right thing and invite their new friend to
stay the night as it was not safe to travel the roads at night. Jesus
accepts their invitation.
As they sat down to eat, Jesus took the bread and blessed it and their
eyes were opened. What joy must have flowed through their hearts in
seeing their risen Lord. Jesus is removed from their sight but they are
so filled with joy that they head straight back to Jerusalem to share
their wonderful story.
They arrive to a room full of excited followers because here was just
two more who had seen the risen Lord. As they shared their joy with one
another, Jesus appears to the whole gathering, as further evidence of
His resurrection. And what joy must have filled that room that night as
they received His encouragement and blessing. What a day it had been.
12. THE DAY THAT CHANGED
This finale simply gathers together the joy of then and now of the
victory that Jesus had gained for all mankind when He rose and
conquered death. The song is capable of standing alone but takes us
beyond that first day and endeavours to show how special this day was
to the world that was to follow. The feature of the song is its
extended ending that brings about the blending of several different
instruments that highlight the complexity and joy of what the
Resurrection means to us.
Downloading the album (49MB in size) will give you all 12
songs plus the CD Insert cover (actual size for printing) with a file
the contents that will also fit in a CD case. The file is a
zipped file and will need to be unzipped.
ORDER CD Number: SAPM2012006
|ALL SONGS ON THIS ALBUM ARE
WRITTEN BY R. J. BURLING