Release Date: May 25th 2018
Reviewed by: Jonathan Andre
- Remember to Remember
Steven Curtis Chapman. Three little words that, if uttered by anyone to an avid fan of Christian music as myself, will be accepted with intrigue, excitement and wonder, knowing that Steven himself is perhaps one of the most prolific and influential Christian artists, ever (alongside others like Amy Grant, Michael W. Smith, Jars of Clay, Audio Adrenaline, Carman, Delirious? and DC Talk, all whom have had their rise to prominence in the 1990s). Even now, as many such artists aforementioned have either released albums less frequently or have departed the music industry altogether, Steven’s durability in a music world where artists come and leave it at the drop of a hat, is nothing short of miraculous and a testament to the quality of his music as a whole. Well into his 50s, Steven doesn’t look like he’s slowing down, and why would he? With songs like ‘All Things New’, ‘Miracle of the Moment’, ‘Cinderella’, ‘Not Home Yet’, ‘Do Everything’, ‘Heaven is the Face’, ‘Glorious Unfolding’, ‘More to this Life’, ‘Lord of the Dance’ and ‘Live Out Loud’, just some of his many, many chart-topping songs spanning more than 30 years; we have been blessed to listen to one of Christian music’s most humble and poignant singer-songwriters, an artist that any artist who is to be venturing into Christian music, should look up to. And now all those years later, Steven has unveiled a new song in ‘Remember to Remember’. Whether this song is the first single of another project he could be working on, we don’t know. But what I do know is this- if anyone is an avid fan of Steven and his music as I am, then stop whatever you’re doing and check this song out fast…it’s that good! This song is a must have if you love Steven and his music, or if you love Christian music in general. It is a timely song too, as this message comes at a moment in history where it is very much needed, as Steven continues to press on and relay to us our continual need and necessity for us to consciously remember His goodness and faithfulness at all times, even in those moments where we often don’t see it in the fore…especially those moments!
Standing at 3:40, a perfect length for a radio friendly track, we are blessed with quite possibly one of my favourite Steven Curtis Chapman single’s I’ve heard since ‘Miracle of the Moment’, ‘All Things New’ and ‘Do Everything’. With whistles and ‘ahhh’ backing vocal moments to bring the song to a start, Steven delivers lyrics with such poignancy and emotion that we can’t help but be transfixed to see how the song will develop. And as we hear the song, we hear a message- one of remembering, of understanding and continuing to understanding what God did for us and what it means now that death has been defeated, that love has won and continues to win in our lives on a daily basis. As far as radio singles go, this new one from Steven is one of his best, as we’re reminded that we ought to ‘…remember the way He led you up to the top of the highest mountain, remember the way He carried you through the deepest dark, remember His promises for every step on the road ahead, look where you’ve been and where you’re going and remember to remember…’ Because frankly, we are a forgetting bunch. We remember for a time and then we forget when circumstances come our way. And so this song is as a reminder to remember, and a reminder to remember to remember. We can never be reminded enough to always recall the moments of His goodness to us, and to use such times in the past as a platform for us to call upon His name, longing for Him to undertake such things again now. And with a message like that, who can’t love this new song from Steven, most likely from his yet-to-be-titled album coming later on this year?
‘…over the past few years as I was in the process of writing/telling my story in my book, Between Heaven & the Real World, I was reminded over and over again of the incredible power and importance of remembering. In the Old Testament, God told His people to tell and retell to each other the stories of His faithfulness, and even build monuments (stones of remembrance) to help them remember the places where He had showed up in profound ways on their journey. He knew how much they – and we – would need to have those tangible reminders. Remembering keeps us grateful, humble, and most of all hopeful!…’ This quote above is what I reckon the song is about, in a nutshell. ‘Remember to Remember’ is a reminder for us to continue remembering, and to not allow busyness or moments of distraction from things like work, study, hanging out with friends, TV, whatever it is for us, to get in the way from us remembering His faithfulness before, and His faithfulness now. While a little musically safe (very acoustic guitar driven, as with many of Steven’s songs before), it’s the message that continues to be the drawing card for anyone who loves a great SCC song. Though it has been 30 or so years in the biz for Steven, this song still proves his longevity as a singer-songwriter and quite possibly one of my favourite artists within the last 20 years or so! Well done Steven for such a song as this- a certain to be replayed over and over on my Spotify playlists in months and ever years to come!
RIYL: Michael W. Smith, MercyMe, Lifehouse, Chris Tomlin, Amy Grant