Behind the Song: Rise Again
Rise Again was released in 1977 and shares the story of the crucifixion and resurrection from Jesus’ view point.
The song was written by Dallas Holm, a singer-songwriter of Christian music. He has greatly influenced the contemporary Christian music genre.
In an interview with the St. Augustine Record, Holm recalled:
“I began to pray, which I should have done in the first place, and in the course of my praying I remember saying, ‘Lord, if you were singing, what would you sing?’ That thought really stuck in my mind. I didn’t know if I had ever heard a song from a first-person point of view. As hokey as it may sound, I had this mental image of the Lord, dressed as we often picture him in our minds, standing on a street corner with a guitar, singing. It was as if you could translate Jesus into modern times, with singing as his form of communication. What would he sing?”
“As soon as I focused in on that approach to my task, I began to write as if I were taking dictation. I wrote the music and the words in about 10 minutes — no changes. I titled it ‘Rise Again.’”
“As I finished I looked at the song and realized that this didn’t come out of my head. I have often said that God wrote the song, and I only delivered the message. That describes the way I feel about the experience.”
The song was first recorded live at Lindale High School. In recording the album the song was recorded on he admitted in the interview, “”We didn’t know anything; we did everything wrong you could possibly do… It was truly live with no fixes. We just blew through it and sang our songs, the whole thing took 45 minutes.”
The song was first released on Dallas Holm & Praise…Live—Rise Again in 1977.
The song was the last track on the album that was released, which Holm said is “generally referred to as the graveyard of songs.”
Holmes credits the success of the song on God’s power. He went on to say, “However, if God puts his finger on something, and if he anoints it, it doesn’t make any difference if all of the right marketing plans and promotional schemes are used. Having Christ say, in the song, ‘Go ahead and drive the nails in my hands…’ impacted the listener. The song stayed on the music charts for four years. As far as we know that has never happened before or since.”
Rise Again won the 1977 Dove Award for Song of the Year.