- reviewed by Russ Breimeier Copyright Christianity Today International
- 2002 1 Mar
Virginia Leigh ("Ginny") Owens has earned much-deserved respect among her Christian music industry peers in a relatively short amount of time. Despite her degree in music education from Belmont University, Ginny was frustrated to learn that most schools aren't interested in a blind music instructor. Surely this was all a part of God's plan for her, since she then shifted her focus to songwriting. Fueled by the confusion, doubts, and struggles in seeking God's will, Ginny's thoughtful and honest songwriting attracted the attention of just about every Christian record label in Nashville. She eventually settled on the Rocketown label and in 1999 released her debut,
Of course, the title refers to more than just a new album with more songs on it.
This theme of finding something more in our lives runs throughout the album. Though it borders on becoming a bit repetitive, Ginny is able to express herself with enough frailty, honesty, and artistry to sustain interest, never coming across as too shallow or too intellectual. The best moments are when she explores the theme from more unique angles. For example, "I Am" points to Moses, David, and Mary to demonstrate that God has a plan for us, now matter how insignificant we think we are. Another highlight is "This Road," a sweet ballad that has been accurately (though perhaps unfairly) labeled as this album's equivalent to "If You Want Me To." It's another great song from Ginny that finds her asking God for meaning behind the path he's set before her, and realizing in the end that "I don't have to understand to believe that you know why." I also like "True Story," a song co-written by Scott Dente from Out of the Grey that essentially portrays us all as self-obsessed artists and God as the ultimate critic who recognizes the true beauty beneath our seemingly ugly work. The album closes appropriately with the confessional prayer, "All I Want to Do," and the classic hymn "Be Still My Soul," two songs that lay our fears and doubts before God.
Lyrically, Ginny excels at capturing feelings and emotions we all wrestle with as Christians. Part of me wishes she broadened her scope a bit on this album, but it's hard to critique what's presented here. Likewise, it's difficult to be critical of Ginny's talent for writing a sophisticated melody. Many of her songs seem to have a bit of jazz/show tune influence, more typical of the work from a seasoned pro such as Cindy Morgan. Unfortunately,
Clearly attempts were made to make the new album sound more like a modern-pop project along the lines of those from Nelly Furtado or Jonatha Brooke, since quiet folk-inspired music is a hard sell on radio. The modern pop sound is a good fit for Ginny's vocals and songs, but it's simply too busy-sounding on