Three years have passed since their previous Christmas album, now the Kingdom Heirs are back with their new festive recordings "Glory to God in the Highest." We are honored to be able to catch up with group member and co-producer Arthur Rice for this exclusive interview.
Q: Thank you so much for doing this interview with us. Over the last few months, I guess, there were quite a few changes with the departure of Brian Alvey and the recruitment of Loren Harris. How are you adjusting to the changes?
It's going great.!! We hated to see Brian go but it was something he felt like he needed to do.
Loren came on and in a weeks time it's like he's always been here. Not only is he a great singer but he's just a great guy and everybody loves him.
Q: I love your new Christmas album. Did you approach this album any differently this time compared to your last Christmas record 3 years ago?
Not really. As many Christmas programs that we do each year we like to have a good selection of standards and new songs. That way we can make each show we perform during the day different.
Q: With so many Christmas songs to choose from, how did you narrow down your song choices?
It is getting a little harder to find songs we haven't done after all these years. We usually try to get a blend of old and new.
Q: Let's talk about the two original songs on the record. First off is the title cut "Glory to God in the Highest." What compelled you to record this song?
We've always loved this Darrel Williams song, so when we started picking songs we all agreed we needed to record it. I know a lot of groups have recorded it before but the great thing about being at DW, our crowds are not your typical SG audience so we can take a song that's been around a while and it's a new song to our audience.
Another old song that we wanted to record was the Squire Parsons song "King of Eternity". It's another that's been around a while but our crowd thinks it's brand new. The lyric is so good I decided I didn't want a big track to get in the way of a great vocal and lyric. So we recorded it with just Andy on the piano and a little guitar.
Q: What about the other original "Singing to the King." Why is this song important to you?
Well, I think you can tell we love great lyrics and of course Dianne Wilkinson writes some of the best.
"The angel sang to Jesus the first Christmas lullaby, announcing His arrival as there voices filled the sky. The wisemen traveled far for they had precious gifts to bring. But the angels gave the gift of praise they were singing to the king.
That's a great lyric and Jerry delivers it perfectly with a little Latin flavor.
Q: Besides the songs that speak of Christ and his birth, you have included a few secular festive favorites. I love your take of "Christmas Cookies." Why did you choose this fun number?
I did this song for my little wife Tammy. She knows how much our boys and I love her Christmas cookies. So it fits my family to a T.
Q: Speaking of Christmas, what does Christmas mean to you personally?
Christmas is ultimately about the Cross. If it wasn't for the birth of Christ, there couldn't have been a Savior to bleed and die for all our sins and arose from the dead to prove forevermore He is the King of Eternity. Glory to God In Highest