Earlier this month indie singer/songwriter Wes Pickering released his fifth studio album simply titled Hope. Spending much of 2011 working on the songs for his album, Hope is the best yet from this artist! You can learn more about Wes, find out about tour information (he’s currently on a Christmas tour with Josh Wilson), and buy the new album at his Internet base, WesPickering.com!
As soon as Wes shared the music video for “Open My Heart” with me, I knew I had to share it with y’all. Watch the video below and then I’m going to let Wes to tell you a little more about the song, co-written with Andrew Osenga.
Dig deeper into “Open My Heart” with Wes
“Open My Heart” was one of the first songs written for my new album Hope. Andrew Osenga and I gathered at his studio and began discussing things that were on our hearts. Both of us wanted to write a song about the contrasts between faith and doubt. As with many of the other songs on Hope, Mark 9:24 was a verse that played over and over again in our minds: “I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!”
It’s rare to find such a bold proclamation of faith that, at the same time, acknowledges the presence of serious doubt. We wanted to capture that sentiment: “God, open our eyes when we don’t see you.” It’s faith, but it’s also the admission that surrender is a difficult thing to do when we don’t have all the answers. I think that’s where we find ourselves closest to God, the place where we are completely vulnerable to His will.
I can’t begin to tell you how blessed I feel to get to write with a musician like Andrew Osenga. He has such an ear for melody, and writing lyrics just comes easily to him. We never seem to get stuck when we write together because he always has new ideas to get us over the humps.
We finished the song within a couple of hours, but I didn’t record it for over a year. When I finally began tracking for Hope, “Open My Heart” was the first song I worked on. The plan for most of the album was to use a lot of electric guitar, but for “Open My Heart,” I had this idea of making a rock song completely with acoustic instruments. Sometimes if you set limits on yourself, you force yourself to become more creative. So I played acoustic guitar, mandolin, piano, and I found fun ways to make drum sounds with things like an empty guitar case. My friend Scott Gypson came over and recorded this great upright bass track. The result is this wonderfully big sound, like a rock band playing an unplugged show in your living room.
I’m really excited about this song. It’s a great way to start the new album, which dives even further into the themes of doubt, faith, and hope. My prayer is that people who listen to Hope with find encouragement to dig deeper in their faith in spite of any circumstance they face.– Wes Pickering
Pretty cool video, eh? What do you think of all the instruments Wes is playing? How many instruments do you know how to play? What do you think of the song, album, video? Share all your thoughts below! (And I bet we can even get Wes to respond to some of ’em.)