Stu G (founding member of Delirious? and One Sonic Society, as well as current touring guitarist for Michael W. Smith) will independently release Have You Heard 2015 on Stugiology Music Dec. 18 through The Fuel Music distribution. First recorded in 1995, this completely remastered, 20th anniversary edition of the album pre-dates Stu's work with Delirious? and features every member of the original Delirious? lineup. It also includes three newly recorded songs. We are so honored to catch up with him for this exclusive interview.
Hallels: Congratulations on the release of "Have You Heard." This is a re-release of an EP recorded 20 years ago. Tell us the story behind when this EP was originally made. Was this before your days with Delirious??
Thanks! Yes sure :) We originally recorded these songs before Delirious? was officially a band and during the "Cutting Edge" Years. I had some of the songs since about '91 and Martin, Tim and Stew wanted to help me get these recorded and available at the Cutting Edge events.
The song "Have You Heard" got recorded by Noel Richards and then Delirious? went on to record "Come Like You Promise" and "Absolute."
Hallels: Why did you decide to re-release it now?
Well, I just thought it would be fun. I had a conversation with my manager, Tony Patoto, and we thought we'd look at what it would take to pull it off. It took a little work actually, as along the way I lost the stereo master, so I had to find someone with a Tascam MSR 24 track 1" machine to transfer the multitrack to the digital domain. I found a company in New Jersey and once that was done, I handed it to Shane D Wilson to remix. Martin Smith is a talented producer and engineer! Once we got the files to Shane, we were all amazed at how good the tracks sounded 20 years later.
Hallels: Looking back at these songs written 20 years ago, how do you feel about them now? Did you change some of the words or music for today?
On the 6 original tracks I changed nothing. No editing or auto tune. I wanted people who have the cassette to recognize every aspect of the songs. Being remixed and remastered is a serious upgrade though.
I added three new tracks, all re-makes. "Rest" and "The Rain" were recreated by Matt Stanfield. There are no guitars on those tracks! I wanted more of a Massive Attack style approach. I re-sang those two songs. Then, "Come Like You Promise Live" is from one of my online Stageit shows this year.
Hallels: The first time I saw you guys was when you were recording with Darlene Zschech and Hillsong for your live album together. With all these years with Delirious? touring around the world, what are some of your highlights?
Oh man, so many. Glastonbury Festival, Wembley Stadium. The Roxy in LA, India, touring Asia. Brazil, South Africa. Having songs on mainstream radio, the Bon Jovi tour. Hearing crowds sing your songs in their own language. In fact, every time we stepped off a plane into one of the 46 countries we played, it was amazing. Above all though, it was the sense of calling, passion, vision and being part of a team that saw a movement grow around the world.
I miss all the guys and all those days!
Hallels: I am sure you have been asked this question a million times before, but I am still going to ask. Will there be a new Delirious? album in 2016?
Well, I don't think there will be a Delirious? album, but both Martin and I have new musical projects in the making. Martin has a new band called Army of Bones and I am recording an album with songs based around The Beatitudes with some incredible artists, and also writing a book. It's all very exciting actually.
I will say tho that I would love to write again with Mart when the time is right.
Hallels: As we are approaching Christmas, what are your plans for Christmas? And what does Christmas mean to you?
We love Christmas in our house! We will have a house full of family. Being together is a real treat! We have a new granddaughter, so we're really excited to spoil her.
The Christmas Season is special for us. I love advent - pausing - waiting - anticipating. And I love the celebration. This year, we find ourselves in a crazy unstable world with a lot of pain and suffering. My hope is in the Prince of Peace, and that we will once again hear angels sing of peace on earth and goodwill to men.