Tomlin Songwriters Conference Publishes Hymnal For 21st Century
Attendees at the annual Chris Tomlin Songwriters Conference were part of a special project this year. For the first two days of the conference they learned songwriting skills and tips in the style of Tomlin. Then they gathered in groups of 6-10 people for the remainder of the week and wrote hymn lyrics and tunes.
When it was all said and done, they had produced a hymnal for the 21st century. Ironically, it looks a lot like the Baptist Hymnal, but with variations. Tomlin explains the situation. “Obviously my style tends to come through in my conference training. When the attendees gathered together, they just started thinking about the older hymns and realized there is no reason to reinvent the wheel… or song in this case. Many of those great works just need a catchy chorus to freshen them up.”
Tomlin expects a resurgence of singing hymns now that his team of songwriters has republished all of the great hymns of Christian history with his edits. As one of the attendees stated, “It is sort of like what Eugene Peterson did with the ‘The Message’ only we didn’t actually remove words from the hymns.”