Thanks for Visiting

Over time I have written a number of songs. I will continue to add them to this blog so, please, keep coming back to see what's new.


Friday, March 10, 2023

We Ever Pray for Thee

I held the door open for the prophet once.  I was 18 years old and just out of high school.  I had headed to Brigham Young University a month before school started, thinking I might have a better chance at finding part-time work before the throng of students arrived for fall semester.  I landed a part-time job doing janitorial work at the Wilkinson Center, hub of the BYU campus.  One week into the job, I was at work thinking it’s just another ordinary day, when I became aware that there was to be a commencement luncheon in room 324 that day and several church dignitaries would be in attendance.

Journal entry from August 15, 1980:

Three hours into my shift at around 1 o’clock I grab a rag and a squirt bottle and head up to the third.  Outside 324 there are about five guys wearing suits and have little transmitter earphones in one ear.  I am standing at a nearby drinking fountain — I’ve washed it about 25 times (inconspicuously, of course) hoping to get a glimpse of the prophet and then I hear one guy say to another,  “They’ve gotta be out by 1:15.”  I look at  my watch — 13 after.  I’m going crazy.  Then the secret agents (I call the bodyguards secret agents) say, “OK, here they come.”  My heart skips five beats.  I scooted up and I asked one of the secret agents how often the first presidency come here like this.  He said, “All four of them together come about once every 100 years.”  I ALMOST DIED.  Then the secret agent said to me, “How would you like to do the most important job in your life?”  I screamed, “Sure!”  He said, “Will you hold the elevator door open for the prophet?”  By now I’ve totally lost all my senses!!  I shove the rag and sprayer in my left hand and hide them behind my back.  That vest though, the only time I see them in person and I have to be wearing that pukey yellow janitors vest.  HERE THEY COME!!  My stomach is turning flops.  

First Marion G. Romney and N. Eldon Tanner and an agent get on the elevator and I get to shake their hands.  I was so excited I almost threw up on them. They go down.  Elder Packer and his wife and some others go down on the other elevator.  Then President Benson and his wife come.  BYU President Dallin Oaks and his family, Barbara Smith and her husband, FINALLY PRESIDENT SPENCER W. KIMBALL AND HIS WIFE CAMILLA.  I just couldn't believe it.  He was adorable wearing a bright yellow Hawaiian lei around his neck.  They were so gracious.  I shook their hands too.  

After they had gone and I came to my senses, I realized that the rag I had shoved behind my back was dripping wet (25 times, remember!?!)  I had held the rag against my pants all that time.  Now I have this big wet spot on the back of my pants.  For the rest of my shift I kind of walked with my back to the wall.


We ever pray for thee, our prophet dear,

That God will give to thee comfort and cheer;

As the advancing years furrow thy brow,

Still may the light within shine bright as now,

Still may the light within shine bright as now.

We ever pray for thee with all our hearts,

That strength be given thee to do thy part,

To guide and counsel us from day to day,

To shed a holy light around our way,

To shed a holy light around our way.

We ever pray for thee with fervent love;

And as the children’s prayer is heard above,

Thou shalt be ever blest, and God will give

All that is meet and best while thou shalt live,

All that is meet and best while thou shalt live.

— text by Evan Stephens 

Click HERE to download free sheet music 


Thursday, February 23, 2023

How Firm a Foundation

At an early age I was drawn to the music of Johann Sebastian Bach. I didn't mind practicing quite as much while playing his minuets and preludes.  As the years progressed I found his book of Inventions fascinating.  In college when cramming for tests late into the night, my go-to study music was usually Bach. I had to keep the volume down, however, otherwise I’d find myself focusing on the music instead of the task at hand.   

JS Bach was a man of God.  He spent his entire life working primarily as a church musician.  In all his 65 years, he was best known as a gifted organist rather than a prolific composer.  He created so many masterpieces, yet only ten of his compositions were ever published in his lifetime.  

His music possessed an incredible spiritual vitality.  As he would sit down to compose, he would often scribble J.J. at the beginning of a composition — Jesu Juva; Latin for “Help me, Jesus.”   And when finishing a manuscript, he routinely initialed S.D.G. — Soli Deo Gloria; “To God alone, the glory.”  

The musical gifts he offered the world are monumental.  Leonard Bernstein said, “Once you do get to know Bach’s music well enough to love it, you’ll find you love him more than any other composer.”  I want to visit Germany one day — to sit in the cathedrals where he played, both large and small, and imagine him at the organ.

I have always found it uplifting to steal away to a quiet room in my house and blast Bach’s St. Matthew Passion or Toccata & Fugue in D minor on the speakers until my soul vibrates.  Even now when I sit down to practice, I like to warm up with his Inventions, numbers 13 and 8.  They get my brain and sluggish fingers moving like nothing else can.  You will no doubt hear Bach’s influence reflected in my piano arrangement of ‘How Firm a Foundation.’    

Fun fact: My initials are TACH which happens to rhyme with Bach. So … yeah.

No wonder I love him so.

Click HERE to download free sheet music 

Wednesday, February 1, 2023

Amazing Grace

Amazing Grace how sweet the sound,

That saved a wretch like me!

I once was lost, but now I'm found;

Was blind, but now I see.

'Twas grace that taught my heart to fear,

And grace my fears relieved;

How precious did that grace appear

The hour I first believed!

Through many dangers, toils, and snares,

I have already come;

’Tis grace that brought me safe thus far,

And grace will lead me home.

When we've been here ten thousand years,

Bright shining as the sun,

We've no less days to sing God's praise

Than when we’d first begun.

Amazing grace how sweet the sound,

That saved a wretch like me!

I once was lost, but now I'm found;

Was blind, but now I see.

                               - John Newton

Click HERE to download free sheet music 

Wednesday, January 11, 2023

Father In Heaven We Do Believe

Father in Heav’n, we do believe

The promise thou hast made;

Thy word with meekness we receive,

Just as thy Saints have said.

We now repent of all our sin

And come with broken heart,

And to thy covenant enter in

And choose the better part.

O Lord, accept us while we pray,

And all our sins forgive;

New life impart to us this day,

And bid the sinners live.

Humbly we take the sacrament

In Jesus’ blessed name;

Let us receive thru covenant

The Spirit’s heav’nly flame.

  - Parley P. Pratt

Piano Prelude No. 14:  Father In Heaven, We Do Believe

Click HERE to download free sheet music  

Sunday, December 11, 2022

O Come, O Come, Emmanuel

The Kingdom of Israel, the Abrahamic covenant and the scattering of the ten tribes — I have been pondering these lately.  I am studying Kerry Muhlestein’s book Learning to Love Isaiah.  I’m digging into the poetic devices Isaiah uses:  metonymy and synecdoche (had to look them up), similes, metaphors, personification and hyperbole.  Chiasmus and symbolism tend to stretch my puny brain.  I’m taking it VERY SLOWLY.  

In Muhlestein’s words, “One literary device Isaiah employs pervasively is imagery.  He expertly paints a picture with his words.  Furthermore, the pictures he paints usually create a powerful emotional reaction.  If we will stop and consider the imagery that Isaiah creates, we will learn that he has a way of helping us imagine and feel things in a way that touches the depths of our souls and stirs out hearts.” 

My reading has put me in a Kingdom-of-Israel kind of mood.  That is why I chose to arrange the Latin hymn O Come, O Come, Emmanuel this Christmas.  Music, too, has the ability to evoke strong imagery in the listener’s mind.  I hope that this musical offering helps create a contemplative mood — reflections of our Savior and His wonderful gift to mankind throughout the ages.

Click HERE to download free sheet music  

Sunday, November 20, 2022

God Be with You Till We Meet Again

I hate goodbyes.  I hate them.  On November 11th my dad lost his year long battle with cancer.  He was just a few weeks shy of his 89th birthday.  He fought a good fight, but what he will be remembered for most is that he lived a good life.  His sphere of influence was great and he left behind a legacy of love.  What more could you want in life?

This arrangement is for anyone who has ever lost a loved one.  May it bring you peace  — the peace that comes from knowing that we will be reunited with our loved ones when our earthly sojourn is complete.  

Life is good.

All is well.

Click HERE to download free sheet music 

Tuesday, June 14, 2022

America the Beautiful

I have the coolest aunt in the world.  Always have.  Growing up we spent many unforgettable vacations together.  An especially fun memory occurred just after my eighteenth birthday.   I was headed off to college to live on my own for the very first time.  That summer both our families had been vacationing at Flaming Gorge in southern Utah.  When it was time for me check into my dorm for fall semester, my sweet Aunt Debbie helped me get settled in.    

I remember she took me shopping after I was all situated in my room.  While cruising through the mall we saw a photo booth, jumped in and the camera started clicking away.  I’m sure our giggles could be heard a couple stores in either direction.

You never know what fun awaits when you’re with her.  I love the laughter that we share when we are together.  Her smile really is contagious and she always looks on the bright side of life.   

I arranged this piano solo of America the Beautiful for my wonderful Aunt Debbie.  We share a deep and abiding love for family, for country and for our ancestors who possessed a profound spiritual connection to this land.  They walked the path before us, paved the way and made our journey a little lighter.  

Love Love Love you Aunt Deb!!

Click HERE to download free sheet music