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BRH choir makes joyful noise with new CD

Nov. 19, 1999



Many students listen to CDs, but students in the Baylor Religious Hour Choir are especially excited about one in particular.

Last spring, the choir entered the Hearn Recording Studio to record Amazing Love, the choir's first CD in six years. The CD has 11 tracks, including titles such as 'Joyful, Joyful,' 'I Am,' 'Hallowed Be Thy Name' and 'Lamb of God.'

'We are very excited about what God is doing in [the choir] and about the opportunity he has given us. We hope that Amazing Love will be used to minister to students in the same way that it has ministered to us,' said Rebecca Kennedy, choir director.

The recording experience was meaningful to the choir in many ways.

'Billy Ray Hearn, whom the recording studio was named after, was a former member of the choir,' Kennedy said. 'All the mixing and editing was done on the Baylor campus in this studio. We recorded two a cappella pieces in Armstrong Browning Library.'

The choir was hoping to have the CDs in time for Singspiration, its homecoming performance, but because it is its busiest time of year, the company had some trouble printing the CD cover.

'We are really asking for students to buy the CD. A lot of students on campus don't get to hear us because we don't sing a lot on campus,' Kennedy said. 'Our ministry is typically in Texas churches.'

The making of the CD was facilitated completely by students.

'Our engineer, Ben Gatzke, is a graduate student at Baylor, and our creative designer, Matt Allen, graduated from Baylor last year,' Kennedy said. 'I was the only person who was not a student who was involved in doing this.'

The CD took dedication from many people, including the vocalists, the full instrumental band, the director and the sound technicians.

'Our last recording was done on Diadeloso. The students sacrificed a lot and we had a lot of extra rehearsals,' Kennedy said. 'We couldn't get into the studio before 9 p.m. because the School of Music uses it up until that time, so there were two or three nights when we recorded early into the morning.'

The members of the BRH band put in even more practice.

'Not only did they record their piece, they came and sang with the choir too,' Kennedy said. 'There are a lot of hours put into this recording.'

By purchasing a CD, students can be involved in helping the BRH ministry to continue.

'Part of the proceeds, once we pay off the CD, will go towards our choir tour which will be out of the country and a lot of money,' Kennedy said.

BRH is not funded through Baylor. All the members pay dues and participate in fundraisers to offset the cost of the tour. The choir also takes a love offering from churches where it performs.

'All the money is through the students' work and time commitments,' Kennedy said.

Beginning Monday, students can buy the $15 CD at the Zachariah and Elizabeth Bobo Baptist Student Center. Students can also order it and listen to sound bytes of the songs by visiting the BRH web site at _Choir.

The CD is a mix of contemporary Christian and traditional music.

'We have a wide variety because there is an occasion where we sing for students, but we also go into churches and sing traditional anthems and hymns,' Kennedy said. 'I think Baylor will be proud of this recording.'

BRH will perform some songs in Chapel-Forum on Monday and on Dec. 1.

'This would make a good Christmas present,' Kennedy said.

Regardless of the sales, BRH is thankful to have this opportunity to extend its ministry.