EURweb.com – Israel Houghton has taken worship music to another level. For years he has led thousands of people in praising God through song, especially as worship leader at Lakewood Church pastored by Joel and Victoria Osteen. He has written or co-written 11 of CCLI’s Top 500 favorite songs, including “You are Good,” “I Am a Friend of God,” and “Say So,” to name a few.
Israel says that thematically, the earlier albums he did with New Breed were about the church and what God is doing. The most recent albums they have done focus more on social and global concerns. Israel strongly believes that people who consider themselves worshippers have a heart for social justice. The song, “The Power of One” is the song they wrote specifically around that thought for this new album with the same name.
Israel was asked to write a song for a main stream artist. His dear friend and fellow worship artist Ricardo Sanchez was at his house and they were working on the project for the mainstream artist. The only criteria for the song was that it would be a socially conscious kind of song. Israel started with a 1970s, activist guitar vibe and the first thing that came to Israel’s mind was the first line of the song, “What if it all depended on me…” Then Ricardo came up with what Israel thinks is the best line of the song, “Don’t hang around/Stand up or sit down.” Israel felt that they had the makings of a provocative song, because it makes the listener have to do something and take responsibility. The song came together, they recorded a demo of it, and it provided the feel for the whole album.
The music of Israel and New Breed is in demand for everything from film soundtracks to commercial jingles. Anywhere the message can be disseminated, Israel will bring it. Ultimately, the purpose of the brilliant new music on A Deeper Level is to light a fire under church people to rise to a higher purpose.
“Like the song ‘Say So’ states,” Israel concludes, “We’re not here to salt the salt and light the light. We’re here to get out to where there is darkness and no flavor – where people need the strength that we, as Christians, have access to and possess.”
August 19, 2012 //
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