My long time collaborator for my progressive rock band Philhelmon and I have finished a new video! This is something that was being worked on at the same time as our last album Perpetual Immobile, but we chose not to include it on that album. I can’t speak for Henk (from Philhelmon), but I think it made sense since this didn’t quite fit the narrative of Perpetual Immobile. We decided to finish it and put it out since we are both quite pleased with how it turned out!
The hymn “Flee as a Bird” originates in the 1800s of USA. Henk did a great job making it unique. This may be on the forthcoming Philhelmon album that Henk and I are currently working on. What do you think of our reworking of this classic hymn?
Here is a little history on the song - impressive since this woman is known for writing these hymns in a time where women were more repressed than they are now:
“In 1839, beset by the recent deaths of her husband, brother, sister, and infant son, twenty-seven-year-old Mary Dana began to pour out her grief in verse. Although her diaries do not record when she first conceived of writing songs as such, she had expressed her disdain for the repertoire heard at an 1835 sacred concert in no uncertain terms: “Deliver us from such Music.” That deliverance came, in part, through th esix song collections sh ewould publish before her own death in 1883. Those songbooks would brilliantly document in music the wedding of American religious life and the antebellum of reform impulse. While she faced difficulties common even to the relatively privileged women of nineteenth-century America - physical illness, widowhood, and economic hardship - her career represents a remarkable triumph: transforming love songs into sacred lyrics, she produced engaging compositions that are performed to this day, living links to the musical and reform cultures of her time.”
- From Patricia Woodard’s “Flee as a Bird”: Mary Dana Shindler’s Legacy