“Hi, I’m Ben. I play guitar. And I’m a Mormon. Mormon Guitar began as a little project to write an original arrangement of one of my kids’ favorite hymns and primary songs every month. It was also an excuse to play the guitar more often (but don’t tell my wife). Each arrangement looks for new insights into the meanings behind the hymns. I wouldn’t classify this album as easy listening; I look at it more as a bold statement of what the guitar can really make the hymns sound like. But this album isn’t irreverent either. It’s beautiful and emotional and gives the hymns a little more 'umph!' Know what I mean? It’s the perfect sound to keep a missionary motivated, a home happy, and a Latter-day Saint smiling!“
I don't normally listen to church music outside of church. It's not that I'm a heathen, it's just that they seem . . . boring. Not this set. While still reverent and totally appropriate arrangements, Mormon Guitar has managed to shed a whole new light on the sacred hymns and favorite primary songs. I find myself even listening to this album in my office at work and in my car -- not just on Sundays. These are incredibly beautiful, peaceful, inspiring arrangements and are great to listen to over and over and gift to missionaries, investigators, new members, old members, your kids, your parents, or yourself.
This is a great way to enjoy your favorite primary songs and hymns. They are played with such passion and upbeat. The guitar has definitely made a giant leap in the list of my favorite instruments. I also think Ben has a great voice and would have liked to have heard more of his voice.
Ben's arrangements capture the hymns in a way that portray the emotion that I imagine the original composers were feeling while writing them. I feel like I have gained a new vantage point to hymns that I have heard for 35 years, as though I have rediscovered them in some way. The simplicity of production does not allow distractions to get in the way of the message, and it shows Ben's confidence in his ability to record an honest performance instead of being tempted to over-polish the songs, as is all too common in the current musical climate. I would recommend this album to anyone.
I stumbled on Ben a few months ago when I read the Deseret News article about arranging "Families Can Be Together Forever" to celebrate the five year anniversary of his daughter being cancer-free. The songs he has posted on his website are great, but the CD takes the music to a whole new level. The way it's recorded makes you feel like he's right in your living room doing a private concert. I especially like the twists he puts on the hymns and Primary songs to give them a fresh sound without being irreverent. This is definitely my new favorite LDS album!
Some of my favorite hymns reimagined in different musical genres. Ben plays with his soul and his talent is impossible to deny. This is the perfect gift for a missionary, newly married couple, new member or anyone who appreciates soulful, rad guitar! I've even played his music for my 5 year old Primary class while they colored. Great music is timeless. So happy to add this to our collection!
I've had the pleasure of sampling a few previews of this album and I have to say it is a masterpiece. It's soulful, uplifting, and is sure to tug at your heartstrings. Perfect for the car, a lazy sunday afternoon, or for those times when you need to feel inspired. I wish I had had this on my mission. Its modern take on beloved hymns and primary songs from my youth helps me connect to them in a whole new way. I can't say enough good things about this album! Buy it. You won't regret it.
Classy passion that makes you feel the familiar hymns at your core. These are hymns that take you into their message and have you mentally reciting the lyric in a very personal way. Truly inspiring!
My family and I had an opportunity to hear Ben perform live recently. He took to time to explain what he was thinking and feeling as he did the arrangement for each song. It was a joy and an inspiration.
Ben Howington has captured the beauty of these selected hymns through skillfully-crafted arrangements. His care for both the instrument and the sacred nature of the music is heard through each note played. This versatile CD preserves the spirit of the hymns and is still able to ring with a renovated sound that could still be played in any setting! Thank you, Mormon Guitar, for taking the time to put together such a great album! I've enjoyed listening to each track repeatedly! (Especialmente gostou da bossa nova do Quero Ser Um Missionario)
Thank you for sharing your talents.