Esther Moore reveals the inspiration for her debut album All Shall Be Well
Esther Moore's debut album has already wowed critics and reached number 14 in the iTunes singer/songwriter chart. We caught up with the Bath-based musician to find out more about her journey so far.
CT: You've released this album while 7 months pregnant! What has that been like?
EM: [Laughs] People can't believe it! This has been an album baby as well as having a real baby. It just worked out that way, we weren't going to put our family plans on hold just because of the album but that's been a journey in itself.
I felt like I had all of these dreams but none of them joined up or lined up. They all seemed incompatible with each other. A person who has really influenced me is Josh Garrels. His music and voice is amazing but the way he does it with his family and his kids who are just as involved in his music as anyone else...That really inspired me and made me realise it doesn't have to be one dream or another but I can go after all my dreams and God makes a way for it to happen.
CT: You were gearing up to release an album some time ago when you were living in Jerusalem. What happened?
EM: I decided to start recording an album with my brother in law six years ago. We recorded it in bedrooms in the back of a closet. We recorded everything, all the instruments then right when we were going to record vocals, I came down with laryngitis. I had to leave the country and it just didn't work out.
It's been a long journey but at the same time I'm so glad it came out when it did because City of Gold is a recent song that was just written a couple of months ago. There's loads of songs that are on there which wouldn't have been on there if we had done it before.
I'm just really happy now with the quality of the album. We had to transform our flat in Bath into a studio for a week to record this album and it captured the feel of what I wanted it to be, that organic sound but one that was still really high quality and produced really well.
CT: Being based in Bath, UK, must be very different from Jerusalem. Do you have fond memories of Israel?
EM: I absolutely loved growing up there. It was my home and I hated leaving it. I felt so at home there and I still do. We love the city and the place and the culture. I've never been to a city quite like it. It's such a mix of Eastern culture and Western culture and ancient and modern. The song City of Gold was inspired by the city of Jerusalem. It has so many layers and there's so much depth to it. I've always loved how multicultural it is.
At my school everything was political and everyone had a very passionate opinion. I really got a chance to see both sides of the whole issue. My parents run a 24-7 worship and prayer centre called Succat Hallel and I grew up leading worship there and a lot of my music skills were developed in that environment.
Something they do now is a conference that brings Arabs and Israelis together to promote reconciliation and it's incredible. It's called Elav and its amazing.. There's a lot of hatred on both sides and a never-ending cycle of revenge and violence. So they come to this conference and by the end they've completely changed. They go from hating each other to loving and becoming best friends. I really loved to see that and be a part of that.
CT: What is the title track All Shall Be Well about?
EM: It was written when I wasn't going through a hard time a few years ago but since then lots of things have come up and that's pulled me through that.
There's been quite a lot of ups and downs of great things of job getting married and starting a family, but then there's also been difficult periods as well that I've gone through. The theme carries on through the whole album, I didn't want to sugarcoat things and say everything is perfect all the time because that's not true, that's not life, that's not real.
No matter what hardships come, no matter what we go through, no matter how hard life is, we can have that knowledge that all shall be well.
CT: What are your hopes for the album?
EM: It's already exceeded my expectations. It got to number 14 in the singer/songwriter top 100 iTunes chart just within a few hours of it coming out. The response has been overwhelming, it's amazing. I would love for it to get out as far as possible and what I love about music is it reaches across cultures and boundaries. I hope this album will provoke people to think about there being more to life and the fact that no matter what life throws our way, all shall be well.
One of the things I love about music is its universal and reaches past boundaries and walls that people put up to anything religious and it beings about a message of truth in a non confrontational way.
There's a quote by Adrian Plass that I once read. He was writing about how Jesus used parables to reach people and break past walls. It jumped out at me and I think you can say it of music: "It entertains at the front door while the truth slips in at the window." It's a way of reaching people that would never normally step inside a church.