James “J.J.” Hairston and Youthful Praise, the inspired pen and iconic sound that introduced such gospel hits as “Awesome God” and “Incredible God, Incredible Praise,” are sure to set the gospel world afire with their highly anticipated release, Resting on His Promise (Light Records). This CD offers more than just the trademark East Coast choir sound, expansive melodies and inspired lyrics for which Youthful Praise have set the standard. It also offers the contagious energy of driving rock-infused tunes and plenty of foot-stompin’ rhythm to satisfy the traditional gospel music fan.
Hairston’s ability to craft tunes with timeless melodies and timely lyrics is aptly demonstrated by the title track “Resting on His Promise.” The gentle reminder that we are children of an all-sufficient Father will “put your mind at ease,” as the lyrics say, and draw you into His rest.
The words of “Hear Me Lord” epitomize the project’s theme: “Every miracle in Your Word is preceded by a sound / I need a miracle, so I’ll make my own sound right now.” And what a beautiful sound it is. Whether it’s the triumphant song of praise proclaimed in “What a Mighty God We Serve,” the intimate worship of “Close to You” or the emphatic testimony shared in “You Can Make It,” Hairston and Youthful Praise give unrestrained expression to the heartfelt emotions of the believer.
Hairston once again called upon his friends to lend their voices to Resting on His Promise and received standout performances from David McClure, Dion Kipping, Myron Butler and Dorinda Clark Cole. There is even a surprise appearance from “The First Lady of Gospel,” Shirley Caesar.
Resting on His Promise is sure to exceed the expectations of the most committed fans. This album will take listeners on a musical journey that will stir hearts to worship and lift arms in praise. Those hearing Youthful Praise for the first time will discover the joy of being swept up into a well-woven tapestry of praise and worship by one of the greatest choirs of our day.
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