Recently I received a free iTunes download card while at Starbucks. This particular download was for a new artist of whom I had not heard. This particular song, Rise Up, came from her debut album titled Bible Belt. The name of the album and the song piqued my attention. Once I started listening, I was really interested.
Birch has that bluesy voice that just makes you stop and listen. The musical composition causes you to feel the music. But what about the lyrics? Birch seems to be wrestling with some aspects of spiritual life as expressed in her lyrics. For example, this song includes the following:
My mama tells me I won’t get
Thru the pearly gates
Cuz I ain’t sorry for my sins
And all my mistakes
Well mama I don’t know
If I’m going up or down
But I know heaven’s gonna be
One lonely town
After reading some articles about her including those from her website, she appears to have difficulty with her conservative Christian upbringing. She still admits that she is influenced by it.
Birch was raised by a missionary-pastor father. As she moved into young adulthood, she showed up to a service he was leading wearing a black Goth cape. She did not enter until everybody was situated so as to make her grand appearance.
I want to listen to the remainder of Bible Belt. She is certainly a gifted artist who wrestles with eternal issues. She relies on musical composition of the hymns for her own musical inspiration. I hope that in the future the words of some of those hymns will give her clarity on whether she will go up or down and that heaven is really not a lonely town.