ONE WEEKEND IN MARCH me and my best friends, those I call my brothers, gathered for three days of worship. We traveled 300 miles to reach the studio. We thought it would be great to get out of town for once. The result of this weekend with my brothers is this album. I wanted to record the music live in an atmosphere of friends coming together.
Worship is not music. It is not about sounds and beats. Worship is your heart surrendering to God. A prayer. A relationship. A life. The sounds alone cannot please the Lord, but God will hear a heart’s cry. The inspiration for this album is The Bible. The Word of God has the power to give us life. These words can save, deliver, heal and set free.
The Word will work miracles in our days.
IT ALL STARTED IN THE FOREST. It started in the woods. For the past six months, before recording the album, I had been crying, crying in the forest, waking up in the middle of the night crying. Now here’s a grown man, a former marine soldier with tears streaming down his eyes. But these were tears of joy. Tears when I felt the presence of my Father, my King.
I guess it was what they call revival. Revival in your own life. I suppose it all starts in our hearts. Inside each one of us who believes in His word. One day I heard a voice. It was inside of me but at the same time outside of me. The words were gentle but at the same time clear: “Daniel – find a place where you only seek the Lord, a special place only for meeting your Father.”
I had read that Jesus himself said you should “go into your room, and when you have shut your door, pray to your Father who is in the secret place; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you openly.” Mat 6:6 (NKJV)
I had been praying my whole life but now the words burned like fire in my chest. “Daniel – find a new place where you only seek your Father.” I thought of our living room, but there I had children wanting to wrestle with me. Seeking my attention, love and care.
I thought of our bedroom. But there I “wrestled” with the love of my life, my best friend, my wife. Close to our home we have a forest and I answered the voice I heard inside and said: “I choose that forest. This will be my new place where I only seek the Lord.” It all started in the forest. It started in the woods. Something happened that I had never experienced before. There in the forest I “wrestled” with the Father and I met Him “face to face”.
I will never be the same again. Sunny days and rainy days, I kept on going to that place and it could best be described as falling in love. The songs on this album are a reflection of what I experi-enced in the forest. The songs just came from within me.
I did not care about writing good music or great lyrics. I did not care if the songs sounded good or bad. I was in love with God and everything inside of me just wanted to worship Him in that place. I felt His presence, His love and I believe I heard His voice through the word. I read the Bible and got a new revelation of the power in the word of God.
When we speak we are trying to describe and explain reality by using words and pictures, but when the Lord speaks, He is not trying to explain reality. He speaks re-ality. The reality is being created through Him. His words create reality. He said, “Let there be light; and there was light.” Gen 1:3 (NKJV)
The light, the reality we live in and see, came out of Him, because the power is in His word. There in the forest I understood the power of His word in a deeper way and I believe that if we connect with His word in worship, then the power in the word is not just an attempt to explain reality, but has creational power. Then His word will work miracles in our days. To meet the Father “face to face” is not exclusive to me. It is not exclusive to anyone. All people are loved equally by God and if you “draw near to God, He will draw near to you.” James 4:8 (NKJV)
“Whenever, though, they turn to face God as Moses did, God removes the veil and there they are-face to face! They suddenly recognize that God is a living, personal presence, not a piece of chiseled stone. And when God is personally present, a living Spirit, that old, constricting legislation is recognized as obsolete. We’re free of it! All of us! Nothing between us and God, our faces shining with the brightness of His face. And so we are transfig-ured much like the Messiah, our lives gradually becom-ing brighter and more beautiful as God enters our lives and we become like Him”. 2 Co 3:16-18
OUR VISION WAS TO CREATE AN ORGANIC SOUND. We wanted to record the music and lead vocals live. Holding nothing back but letting the passion, heart and desperation in the lyrics be reflected. We preferred this live sound before something more polished and clean.
Jonatan and Daniel planned and pre-produced the songs at home in Daniel’s living room and after two evenings of rehearsals with the band in Stockholm, five songs each evening, we traveled to the small town of Kungälv to record the ten songs. We spent three days in the studio record-ing the music and lead vocals together live.
As we were recording a worship album, it was important to us to present the music in a way that helps the listener join us in worship. Therefore we decided to record a choir some weeks later – to make some of the songs come to life even more.
We gathered our families and friends for a day of studio recording in Stockholm. Our goal was not to get a professional sound, but rather a sound of ordinary people, also the assumed listener, worshipping together with the band.
Using this way of recording the music and lead vocals live in the studio, the album would sound like the band sounds in a live concert. The exact same music made on the album we would be able to perform in concerts, but reaching the audience in an even deeper way.
The center of the vision for the album was the Word. This was a weekend with friends, brothers gathered together to worship the Lord. The way we recorded the album was to capture this atmosphere.
DANIEL CUMMINGS WAS BORN in Sweden to his Swedish mother and Jamaican father. His parents, married for 50 years, have six children and Daniel is number five. Upon moving to Sweden Daniel’s evangelist father traveled the northern part of this cold and snow filled country, singing and preaching the gospel. This was unique for a colored man in this part of the world, especially during the sixties and seventies. The combination of grow-ing up in Sweden, but in a big Jamaican family, has formed Daniel’s life and he has always had a close relationship with his parents and siblings.
Daniel’s worship songs are a mix of these two different parts of the world, which he inherited from his parents. “I love going to church in Jamaica, where everyone brings their tambou-rines and joins in the worship with singing and dancing”. With a mixture of Jamaican roots and modern Swedish heritage, Daniel’s music has a unique sound, heart and edge.
Daniel has been married for fifteen years to the first love of his life, his Swedish wife Josefin. They have two boys and one girl. For the past thirteen years, he and his wife have been entrepreneurs in the Scandinavian jewellery design and furniture business – which they started from scratch. Daniel and Josefin are passionate about their local church and they also have a special heart for helping children in need through an initiative they call Goldchild, which supports organizations helping children.
“The songs on this album came directly from my heart. Yes, I have always had an artistic side, but mostly I consider myself a worshipper.”