DAVID KWIATKOWSKI – STAFF WRITER
During lockdown in 2020, many people took the time to take up new hobbies or return to old ones. In the end, everyone just had themselves and the objects in their home to keep busy.
Grammy and Emmy Award-winning singer and multi-instrumentalist Harry Connick Jr. was on tour in March 2020 when, like the rest of the world, he was sent home.
“As the weeks and months passed, I started writing some music to describe my feelings,” Connick said in an interview with Guideposts. “I was alone at my house in my recording studio, just surrounded by a bunch of instruments, and I just played them one by one. Over the next six or seven months, I had enough material for an album.”
His new album Alone With My Faith came out in March of this year and was entirely arranged, played and sung by him. The album acted as a journal and an outlet to Connick during the throes of the pandemic as he dealt with loss himself.
“For me, (this pandemic) really reinforced the importance of family and faith,” Connick told Guideposts. “We really didn’t know what was gonna happen. I personally had a rough time, because I lost a bunch of people in my life that were close to me, family members and friends. Most of them died as a result of complications from COVID, and when you’re not really able to have closure in a circumstance like that, you can’t really go to a funeral or mourn or grieve in a normal sort of fashion, it really kind of becomes burdensome.”
Connick kicked off his “Time to Play!” tour last week in Indianapolis at the TCU Amphitheater at White River State Park, and continues it at 8 p.m. Friday, Aug. 13 in Chautauqua’s Amphitheater.
He is making stops at outdoor venues across the country with his seven-piece band to showcase his New Orleans influences featuring music from his vast musical catalog spanning a remarkable multi-decade career.
Although there are Christian songs on this album, Connick told CBN News that he wanted to make an album that deals with any phase of having faith.
“I wouldn’t call this the gospel album I had thought about making, only because it’s not a collection of spirituals that everybody knows. It’s got some original songs,” Connick said. “Quite honestly, some of the songs deal with struggling with faith as much as having faith, so when I was home, I found myself counting on my faith, or questioning my faith, or whatever it was, and I said, ‘I’m going to write about it.’ The album that I thought was going to be a gospel album years down the road turned out to be this album.”
Connick seeks to connect everyone in the belief that things will get better, because they have to.
“In every level of faith, whether you’re feeling doubtful about it or whether you’re super powerfully strong about it,” he said, “I think it gives us some words in our contemporary world, because this is a shared experience, so these songs are written for what we’re all going through together.”