The Jacob's Trouble Video Archives

Monday, June 30, 2008

Behind the Scenes: "Further Up, Further In"

Here's another peek behind the curtain into the VH1-style drama that was Jacob's Trouble. I thought with all the hype around the Narnia movies I would give a little insight into our own C.S. Lewis inspired tune,"Further Up, Further In" from our second record, Knock,Breathe Shine (1990):

I am a big fan of C.S. Lewis. Mere Christianity is second only to the Bible in terms of spiritual influence in my life. During the time between Door Into Summer and Knock Breathe Shine, I had been reading a lot of Lewis. My wife and I, both fans of fantasy literature, had bought a set of the Narnia books and were reading them to each other. The Last Battle became a favorite of ours, particularly the last few chapters where Lewis deals with the Narnian concept of heaven.

The characters in the book, having all died in the Last Battle of Narnia, discovered they were in Aslan’s Country (Heaven). What I love most is that he doesn’t waste time trying to describe what Heaven looks like, so much as what we will be like when we get there. His description of the changes that come over the characters is moving and produces a longing for God every time I read it.

At one point, one of the characters calls out “Come! Let’s go further up and further in!” It becomes a sort of cry that encourages them to explore the glory of God deeper and deeper. The further up and in they go, the bigger it becomes.

As with most things that touch me deeply, it squeezed a song out of me. I wrote it down and sang it to the band one night at rehearsal. They all liked it but didn’t really know what to do with it in terms of arrangement. So we didn’t really develop it further until we took it in the studio and recorded it with Terry.

The drum loop is actually Dave Raven’s drum machine. He programmed the loop for us to rehearse with but we liked the groove so much we used it on the recording. Greg played the accordion part, I think. Randy Stonehill came in and sang harmonies. It turned out quite nicely.

Now that full theatrical versions of The Chronicles of Narnia are being made, I’d like to see if they would use “Further Up and Further In” in the soundtrack to The Last Battle. Hey, maybe I could get Third Day to record it and pitch it to Walden Media!


Deron Arnold said...

One of my favorite all-time songs.

I actually heard the song before I read the book! Then while I was reading the book, I said to myself, "Wow, the book's just like the song!"

Dawn Mason said...

I'm Deron Arnold's sister, and I actually came to your site and read this post without knowing he had already done it!!

Thanks for your kind comment on his blog. When I saw it, I called him right away. He was in the middle of doing is daily treatments, but we chatted for a few minutes about your post. It certainly made our day. We both enjoyed your music when we were in college, and whenever I hear it today, I feel like I did when I was 20 years old. Thanks for being such a positive part of our young adult influence that still impacts us today.

Dawn Mason said...

I wanted to let you know that Deron Arnold passed away Nov. 8, 2009 after undergoing a lung transplant the previous July. He endured many major complications and remained strong in his faith until the bitter end.

The song "Further Up and Further In" was a a major theme of the service and was played during a slide show of many pictures of Deron's life. When the song played "running faster than the wind", they showed a picture of Deron racing his tricycle with a big smile on his face. My husband, Joel, did a reading of C.S. Lewis's Final Battle, when they all entered Narnia. Then they played the song and printed the words on the screen.

Thank you for capturing the perfect thoughts for this time in our lives. If you would like to know more who Deron was, you can view his website "Here In Time."