The View From Here

Posted to Wikipedia by Bob Bennett, himself, on 2007-07-27

In July, 2007, Bob posted these song-by-song blurbs to the Wikipedia entry for The View From Here. All was well until December, 2008; when one of the many Wikipedia Deletion Police took it upon himself to vandalise the entry by removing these notes. After a couple of weeks of playing the edit war game I (Christopher Rath) finally gave in and moved the information to this page. At some time in the future I will attempt to move these notes back to Wikipedia; but, in the mean time, they will be available here.

Note, Bob's current notes for the songs on this CD (as opposed to this historical set of notes) can be found on his website.

 

The View From Here CD cover image.

These song-by-song blurbs were originally composed by Bob Bennett for inclusion in the CD booklet for "The View From Here"; however, cost constraints made inclusion of the booklet unworkable. At that time, Bob forgot to write about the album's closing song "All Hail The Power Of Jesus' Name", and so that song is accurately missing from this section. Also included here is the original full length dedication to his Mom.

Dedication
This album is lovingly dedicated to my Mom: Betty Jane Bennett. While every one of us was reeling and grieving in the days following the horror of September 11th, a good part of my family was gathering daily in Mom's hospital room at St. Patrick's in Missoula, MT. We were astounded that Mom battled back from a certain death and we have rejoiced in every stolen day that has followed. From the very first time I picked up a guitar (some 37 years ago now), she always told me: "Bobby, you have to sing every song with oomph." (which I took to be her way of saying that you always mean it ... you never, ever, phone it in). I love you very much, Mom.
The View From Here
Written with Tom Prasada-Rao. Tom definitely gave the song it's cool and gentle groove. Tom came over one afternoon and I was in another whiney mood about how my second-floor apartment really has this horrid view and how Southern California has no night sky to speak of. I just started singing lines about it and we took off from there. Even I was surprised at the "something" we built out of all the "nothings" we kept stumbling over.
Defiant Lamb
Originally written for the Moody radio program "Proclaim". They wanted a song that somehow tied into four specific parables. I managed to do that and write about my own conniving and ingratitude as well.
A Life That Is Not My Own
Written mostly for my oldest son Paul upon his graduation from Marine Basic Training in April, 2001. But also triggered by the incredible plight of my friends Steve & Sandy who almost lost their adoptive son due to the most inane and unfair of legal technicalities; actually now a landmark case of sorts in California adoption law.
Still Rolls The Stone
For many years, my second least favorite of my songs. (The first was and still is "Whistling In The Dark", but that's a whole other story.) I avoided this song like the plague. Then I slowed it down, cut some repetition, played it with my fingers instead of a flatpick and it felt new and better. So I resurrected it ... so to speak!
The Kings Of Summer Street
Written with songwriter extraordinaire Don Henry. We had so much fun with the hang time, we barely got around to the work! A fictional story that seems, nonetheless, wholly true.
The Communion Rail
For the Church. And for His beloved servants: my dear friend and pastor Fr. Stephen Felkner and a new friend, Fr. Jamie Howison. Here my late-in-life Anglican heritage makes its way into a song. I used to think the Lord's Supper was "merely symbol", now I'm pretty sure it's more than that. But I don't always know or understand the shape of that "more". Whether through remembrance or elements or a combination of both, I cannot say. I am tempted to wonder if the Eucharist is a little like gravity, operative whether fully understood or not. I also appreciate the constant renewal and restoration which precedes my coming to the communion rail.
Lord Of The Past
A simple phrase uttered by my friend Michele that led to the title of this song. If God is not in the business of changing the past (at least not so far), maybe He can change how I relate to what has gone before. Faith or belief does not render me only a "new creature", I am also a person who is still reaping what I have done and failed to do. I sing this song in the push and pull of these "competing truths".
We Were The Kings
As soon as Don and I had written the bulk of "Summer Street", I got this idea to write a song about these same guys as old men. This was the hardest song to write that I've ever attempted. Part of it was dealing with the heartache of saying goodbye. Part of it was that I drew from feelings and observations about my own father and also my lifelong friendship with one guy. And so I must dedicate this song to my oldest and best friend Dan Rupple. Yes, the details are made up, but the "him and me" is as true as it gets. May we live to be the old men we used to laugh about when we were young!
Heart Of Hearts
Written by the late Mark Heard. Doubt always seems to move in right next door to Faith. Mark never feared to write about that juxtaposition. And a lot of folks in the church "neighborhood" just didn't want to hear a guy sing about a town that wasn't Mayberry. My reaction when I heard him? Finally, a guy who understands me! I hope I honor his memory with this version and, if he's listening, I hope he likes it!
Man Of The Tombs
A biography that somehow managed to become autobiography as well. One day, if things work out as I hope they will, I will meet this man. The italic subheadings in a lot of Bibles call him "The Gadarene Demoniac". I want to know his name, shake his hand and ask him to tell me the real story that I could only imagine here.

ęCopyright 2007, Bob Bennett
Last updated: 2009/01/01 @ 09:23:27 ( )