When the Heart Awakes
Listen to When the Heart Awakes
The first song I wrote from this collection, When the Heart Awakes is a mother's lament. It's a portrait of a troubled woman who gave up custody of her daughter, as she ponders what her child will think the day she grows up and looks back.
This arrangement hinges on the performance of Cassie Webb, an exceptional singer, a friend and sister-songwriter at MCA Music Publishing where this was cut. I had tried a few previous versions, but felt they were not telling the story clearly. I asked Cassie if she could create a choir behind my vocal. She said it be no problem, requesting only that she be allowed to arrange it according to her aesthetic, as she saw fit. Sure thing! So, one evening, she, Scott Thunes and I recorded the song a few times live. I picked the best take and then turned it over to her.
For the next two days, Cassie weaved a choir track by track. We sat transfixed. Hour by hour the tracks were laid and the choir grew. She kept detailed notes of each take, marking their notation and nuance.Her partner, writer/producer David Skeet, sat at the mixing consul and assisted her in keeping track of all the subtly different layers. I would suggest the kind listener pay close attention to Cassie's sense of dynamics: her choir has a full understanding and intimacy with the lyrics.
It was a remarkable two days. I was a little sad when she said her part was done. I wanted to sit there forever watching Cassie work, listening to her magnificent voice.