“THE SPIRIT OF GOD: Classic Hymns and Spirituals,” by Jenny Oaks Baker, Shadow Mountain Records, $15.98
Jenny Oaks Baker‘s recent solo album titled “The Spirit of God: Classic Hymns and Spirituals” seeks to honor pioneer legacies of faith.
“It has been thrilling to create a musical tribute to the inspiring legacy of faith of the pioneers and other devout men and women who sacrificed so much for the religious freedoms we cherish,” Baker, a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, wrote in the album’s “Artist Notes.”
“The Spirit of God” also represents the album debut of Family Four, featuring her four children: Laura Baker on violin, pianist Hannah Baker, cellist Sarah Baker and Matthew Baker on guitar. The family plays together on two tracks, including the album’s title song and “Oh Shenandoah.”
The album includes 10 tracks carefully arranged to take listeners on a journey of faith. For example, in a dynamic rendition of “Bound for the Promised Land,” the music is designed to mirror the journey of one of the violinist’s ancestors who dreams about leaving England for Zion.
Other songs include “God Be with You Till we Meet Again,” “Israel, Israel, God Is Calling,” “Down to the River to Pray,” “Praise God, from Whom All Blessings Flow,” “Bound for the Promised Land” and “Christ the Lord Is Risen Today.”
From longings to cross an ocean to yearnings to reunite with loved ones further along in their eternal journeys, “The Spirit of God” honors the faithful legacy of pioneers past while deepening the faith of pioneers today.
It’s her 14th solo album, and the album is arranged and produced by Emmy Award winning composer Kurt Bestor.
This write-up originally appeared in the Mormon Times (Deseret News) on April 26, 2018.