Just in case you don't know when this musical was written or this recording made, all you have to do is listen to it. It practically screams 70's folk music. Heck, except for the shofar on the opening number and a recorder a little later on, the only instruments are keyboard, guitars, and drums. But that's part of the charm. The musical is based mostly accurately on the Gospel of Matthew from the Bible. There are only 10 in the cast, so it's not a full blown production. Instead, it's an interpretation with a modern (or at least 70's) setting. There are lots of good songs here. Probably the most famous is "Day by Day." Personal favorites are Jesus' first appearance with "Save the People" and "We Beseech Thee." I also love the slow ballads "By My Side" and "On the Willows," the second being a lament taken from Jeremiah. Frankly, I've found I can no longer read the Sermon on the Mount without thinking of "Light of the World" or Jesus attacking the Pharisees without "Alas for You" running through my head. Those looking for "Beautiful City" will want to look elsewhere since it was added for the movie, and this American original cast recording predates it by several years. This musical is different and takes a few listens to appreciate. But I've loved it since I first saw it a number of years ago, and I pull out the soundtrack on a regular basis. It has an easily singable score, which just adds to the fun. If you want a musical to encourage and inspire you, this lesser known gem is a wonderful place to start. And the original cast recording, while sounding a bit outdated, is still a wonderful way to experience it today.
I've listened to MANY musical soundtracks lately and this is probrably my favorite as of yet. Maybe there are better recordings and maybe it is dated, I dunno cause it STILL sounds *GREAT* to me.! The lyrics are really *GOOD*&FUN(Learn your lessons well, All for the Best, Light of the World)in ALOT of the songs and sad&moving in others(By my Said, On the Willows). Alot of the songs move me into tears even if the singing on some of the songs aint the greatest(Save the People in particular). But none-the-less bad singing and all the songs are STILL amazing&moving. This soundtrack sucked me into Godspell and also got me interested in Jesus Christ Superstar. Don't be afraid to give this disc a listen, if you don't care for a much listen to it a couple more times. It took me a couple listens to catch on with me. With each listen I like it MORE&MORE.! So *enjoy*.! God Bless ~Amy
Even after having this cd for about 8 years, having done the show and many others in the past 10 years or so, I still come back to this cd to sing through the whole thing. I love every song. I can actually sit and listen to this cd, knowing I won't have to forward some songs. The only thing I absolutely hate about this cd is that man trying to sing "All Good Gifts". Where, in the name of all that is good in musical theatre, did they find this man? Who did he know to get this job? "By My Side" is just beautiful. I read that it was the only song that Stephen Schwartz didn't write. It was written by some of the cast of the original production of Godspell before he came in to re-work the music. They decided to keep it in. Good move. Think about the idea behind the song...telling someone that you will always be there...by their side. This was the first musical that I ever fell in love with and it will always be the first point that I realized that this was what I wanted to do with my life. Thanks, Stephen Schwartz, for making "God" fun.
I don't think I need to tell anyone how great the music is. This is one of the few shows written in which every song is memorable, humable, catchy, etc. I know I have had evey song in this show stuck in my head on more than one occasion. The music, and the show itself, is sort of an ecclectic free-for-all journey through the book of Matthew. The cast, thought not the best sounding, is perfect for the show. They are wild, uninhibated, passionate, and untamed, all of which could be said for the book and score itself. I realize that some may prefer a better sounding cast for the CD. However, I guess I am a purist and it just seems that the cast of Godspell should sound like a group of ordinary people reveling in their love of God, not the morman tabernackle choir.
I am a hugh Stephen Schwartz fan!! Even before we moved to the same town he lives in, we had seen "Godspell" TWICE, and "Pippin" on Broadway!! We were at the opening of his "not so popular" "Rags", which had it's good moments!!! But "Godspell" is a classic!! If you are over 50, you'll get it!!! And for those of you younger, LISTEN to it!! However, YOU really should see any production of it in person!! MY first experience was at Ford's Theatre in Washington, DC , very intimate, very personal!! Thanks for reviving a classic!! And a big HOORAY to Stephen Schwartz!!! PS- Also check out "Pippin" - another favorite!!