(Spring-Fall 2005) Let my take you all through a very complex creative process; after all, stories like this one are the reason for this page! I play the piano for the local Methodist congregation, and one morning in February the pastor's sermon centered on Psalm 23, which was printed in their bulletin. It hit me: "What a gorgeous text, it deserves my own music setting." So I went home and pulled out my scriptures and tried to get to work...but I just couldn't get past the music of my two favorite settings (this is Psalm 23, don't-ya-know!). I started thinking about an adaptation, and then it hit me: "Sheep May Safely Graze" by J.S. Bach, the personification of celestial music. I've always enjoyed the number for its extremely pastoral, shepherd-like feel. What piece could possibly work better for a setting of Psalm 23?! I imported the sheet music from England (which cost like 13 dollars), pulled out my scriptures and tried to get to work...but I just couldn't get the text to fit the music without compromising the beauty of one or the other. The project seemed doomed to my "Works in Progress" folder. And then it FINALLY hit me: open the hymnbook, duh! And there it was, hymn #108, "The Lord Is My Shepherd." With two months of creative juices ready and raring to get used, the arrangement wrote itself (as they so usually do). From the offset, the main goal was to stay true to both pieces, at the same time sounding like each other but not being distinguishable. In other words, to sound like they were meant to be together, destined to be linked by some composer. I'm proud to be that composer, and am SO happy with this work!