The recording sessions for “Faith,” Skeleton Crew’s contribution to the Christmas in Detroit 3 project, began on 09/09/09. There was a palpable energy and vibe in the air that was felt by everyone involved.
We had the pleasure of working with Grammy Award winning record producer, Mark Pastoria, and Pastor Henry Covington who brought in the choir we incorporated for backing vocals on the “Faith” recording. Pastor Henry is featured in Mitch Albom’s new book, “Have a Little Faith.” The choir was both inspirational and perfect for this song; they weren’t professional singers, but a group made up of diverse individuals who in some way or another ran into varying degrees of hard luck in their lives. These beautiful individuals, with the help of Pastor Henry and others, have managed to turn their lives around for the better. They have gone on to help and inspire others.
It was during the subsequent recording session to record this choir of hope that we had the pleasure of enjoying a break from recording to talk to one of the choir members. During our conversation about the overall recording experience, the topic returned to the song “Faith” and its meaning.
It was at this moment that the individual we were speaking with offered to share a story that moved us deeply and one we will never forget. The choir member revealed that there was a time in the not-so-distant past where they had slept in a cardboard box outside of the very recording studio in which we were working.
This candid individual lived to party and often frequented Lola’s, the nightclub that occupied the first floor of the building that housed Harmony Park Studios, located in the newly revitalized Harmonie Park area of Detroit. This person eventually dug down deep for the courage and pulled themselves up and got their life moving in a positive direction through the help of people like Pastor Henry and others.
Then came the point in our conversation where this individual told us that they were about to leave the mission that helped them get their life in order and where they worked helping others. This person did not share with us whether they were leaving to become the denizen of despair they fought so hard to conquer or if they were leaving to pursue other opportunities.
It was at the time the choir member was about to announce their departure from the mission when Brian, the talented choir director, handed this person the lyrics to our song, “Faith.” They had not heard a note of the music nor had they ever heard of the band Skeleton Crew before. The choir member told us that immediately after reading the lyrics they were so moved they changed their mind and decided right then and there not to leave. The lyrics moved this person so much they felt this was their reason to stay on at the mission and continue helping others. Speechless and holding back tears we thanked this individual for sharing their very personal story with us.
The reward for writing and recording “Faith” has exceeded even our greatest expectations. To have a song like “Faith” or something you’ve created affect someone so much to the point it alters their life course and steers them in a positive direction is priceless and worth every effort in its production.
Skeleton Crew would like to thank Brian and Mark Pastoria for generously inviting us to participate in this incredible musical journey. We would also like to thank our engineer Alan and everyone at Harmonie Park Studios for making this one of the most memorable recording experiences of our career. Here’s to working together again soon and Merry Christmas to all!
peace & love ~Skeleton Crew®
PS: Help the homeless in Detroit and enjoy some great music by purchasing Christmas in Detroit 3 at http://www.christmasindetroit.org.