Guest Post: Translation Series #5: On Faith Alone

This is a guest post from NewSoGoFan.

Today’s song is one that I’m confident none of my readers have ever heard. It is sung by a young Christian artist named Robert Pierre. These days, he works in the realm of catchy Christian pop/rock and is slowly building a name for himself as a face to watch. I personally have lost interest in his music at this point, but one song he recorded some years ago has always stayed with me. It’s called “On Faith Alone,” and it was inspired by a movie about Martin Luther. I’m not entirely sure who wrote it, but I believe his parents co-wrote it with one other person. A music video was shot for the song in England. It is well worth a watch. Robert’s voice had not yet changed at the time the song was recorded, and his clear boy soprano is captivating:

While I was brain-storming “translation” ideas, this song recently came to mind as a natural candidate. With its soaring melody and solid lyrics, it could easily become an SG hit. But who to translate it? Immediately, I thought of the Booth Brothers. This could be a great way for them to continue in the same vein as a song like “Before the Cross.” Naturally the key would need to be changed. But picture this:  Start it in B-flat and have Jim Brady carry the first and second verses. Range-wise, his elastic baritone could easily handle the melody. Then hand off to Michael at the key change. It could be huge. As for the production, I see no reason to stray too far from the original, as the original was excellent, but it would be easy enough to do an equally tasteful accompaniment that wasn’t absolutely identical.

What do you think? Should this song be rescued from obscurity? And if so, who should rescue it?

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26 Letters to the Editor

Southern Gospel Journal welcomes letters to the editor. We will post the most thoughtful and insightful submissions. Ground rules: Don't attack or belittle groups or fellow posters, or advance heresies rejected by orthodox Christianity. Do keep comments positive, constructive, and on topic.
  1. I’m sorry to unhinge your confidence, but I have heard this song before! My daughter has been a fan of his for several years. Actually, I think Lauren Talley could sing this beautifully.

    • That’s interesting. It could possibly fit on one of her solo albums.

    • I, too, have heard this before…

  2. While I was in no way “blown away” by the song, if it were to be carried over into the SG genre, absolutely leave the piano/strings only rendition. And shoot a music video in England (jk). But those subtleties alone actually make the song HUGE. I believe it would indeed carry over well in the industry. And I like the choice of the Booth Bros. I can totally hear it.

    • I agree. A large part of what “makes” the song is the production. That’s why I said any fresh rendering should stick with that formula.

  3. I have not only heard of the song – but also have a copy of it. 😉

  4. Well, NSF, if it makes you feel any better – I haven’t heard of the song! 😀

    • Thank you Amy! (Boy, it’s gonna take a while for me to get used to “Amy Herrera.” Like everybody else, I was going “Who was that?” before until I saw the pony. :-D)

      Yeah, I was taking a chance when I said that. But I was at least certain that none of the blog’s exclusively SG readers had heard of it, and I reasoned that the song was obscure enough for there to be a good chance that even those familiar with CCM wouldn’t know it. Apparently I was wrong! 😉

      • It’s gonna take me a while too. LOL

  5. I haven’t heard the song, but I must have heard at least 20 that sound virtually the same.

    • You know what, with the state CCM is in today, 20 more songs like this one might not be such a bad thing…

      • Agreed. It pretty much follows a paint by numbers formula, but it’s easier on the ears than a lot of the junk I’ve heard on Adult Contemporary Christian radio.

      • Although, next time you hear a song that uses Latin in the lyrics, feel free to let me know. 😉

  6. Wow! I listened to this and I have fallen in love with this song. It is amazing I could see it fitting with a few different groups. Lyrically it is amazing and stylistically I don’t really see it as being that different than some other songs in Southern Gospel currently. This is a great song thanks for introducing me to it.

    • You’re welcome Shane! Glad somebody liked it. 😉

      • I did VERY MUCH SO and the “Sola Fide” lines are just ingenious. I have a VERY wide variety of musical styles that I love. I pretty much embrace all music so long as it’s “tasteful”; this includes opera and SOME but not very much mainstream music…but there are a few things I don’t like “rap/death metal”. HAHA just pointless. But for the most part I’m eclectic and I like progress!!(wonders if I will be attacked now LOL)

      • By Robert White Johnson, Al Denson, Karla Pierre, and Scott Pierre.

        I found the sheet music: those are the writers.

      • Well, “progress” can mean all kinds of things. 😀

        I have pretty eclectic taste as well. There’s a little bit of everything in my collection except the categories you mentioned… no rap/heavy metal here! 🙂

      • “rap music” is an oxymoron.

      • Amen, amen, and amen, in saecula saeculorum… LOL.

  7. I listen to pretty much anything except heavy metal and country (which I suppose is strange considering my love for SG)

    • Well, not all country music is created equal.

      FYI, I happen to know that Daniel isn’t much of a country lover either, so you two might have something in common. 😉

      • I don’t love any secular music – the only gray area for me is that I do like some classical, particularly by Christian composers.

      • Now to me that’s just funny—obviously it’s a nice bonus if a classical composer was a Christian, but when it comes to music with no lyrical content whatsoever, that shouldn’t really make the slightest difference to how we evaluate a composer’s work. If I hear a piece of great classical music, I don’t need to know whether the composer was a Christian or not to say that this is a great piece of music.

        As for secular songs, there I sympathize more with Daniel. Even the greatest secular songs still have a feeling of emptiness to them. Billy Joel’s “Piano Man” is a perfect example. It’s the stuff greatness is made of, and yet the message is not a hopeful one.

      • Worldview influences all art.

      • Balderdash and rubbish. But we can agree to disagree. 😉