It was in November of 1992. I was with Dad in his hospital room, and I had brought a video tape of me singing The Old Rugged Cross in church. We watched it together. He cried. I cried. It would be one of the last times I would spend with him. The cancer that was taking over his body would take his life just a few weeks later.
From that moment on, The Old Rugged Cross was not just a page in the hymnbook. Now it touches something deep in me. So when I heard My Brother’s Keeper sing this wonderful old gospel song at the taping of their show for Red Barn Radio, they didn’t just sing it. They shared it. They turned it loose and let it fill the room. Joy and sorrow welled up in me in such a way that I couldn’t tell where one emotion ended and the other began.
When I introduced myself to the members of My Brother’s Keeper, they reminded me that we had met before. I first met this group of brothers when we shared a bill in Brookville, Indiana. That was five years ago, and I remember thinking then this that these young men had the potential to do something special.
The Cloud and the Clearing
Wednesday night’s show at Red Barn and their latest album, The Cloud and the Clearing, have both proven me right. Their songwriting, arranging, instrumental skill, and tight vocal harmonies are all top drawer. They’ve already had the chance to open for performers like the late Ralph Stanley, and they will only get better. They sing their faith without being preachy, letting the music do the work. I look forward to seeing where they go from here.
I hope you’ll visit their site and purchase a CD copy of The Cloud and the Clearing. The entire album is outstanding, and The Old Rugged Cross is a bonus track, only available on the CD. I think you’ll be glad you did.
Thank you, Josh, Benjamin, Titus, and Caleb, for stirring up precious memories and sharing your sweet gift.
I still miss you, Poppa.