Every Seed Must Die

by The Promise Is Hope

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about

If you live long enough on this earth you will love, and you will lose. For Ashley & Eric L'Esperance, the folk duo The Promise is Hope, the past four years have been abundant with both love and loss - joy and sorrow - high peaks and low valleys.

In a short time, the two had the joy of bringing their lives together, releasing their debut album "Where We've Been & Where We're Going," and heavily touring the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic. Touring had given them the opportunity to meet and share their hearts with countless beautiful people, many who’d become great & friends and close supporters of their journey. In the same season, the two lost four family members; and went through a painful disintegration of their local faith community. Cancer, suicide, mental illness, and disillusionment had taken their toll and left the them full of questions.

After everything they had experienced, the L'Esperances slowly started writing songs that would become their sophomore album, "Every Seed Must Die." The process of writing and composing was a cathartic examination of death and life, grief and joy, loss and love. The songs are a result of the two digging into their hearts to explore the darkness they had experienced. Writing helped them process some of life’s toughest moments, and their hope is that the songs can do the same for other people - that they will meet you, the listener, wherever you are, walk with you through whatever you are going through & offer you a way forward.

Lyrically and musically, “Every Seed Must Die” marks a step forward for The Promise is Hope. The thematic content shows a growth in depth and maturity for both songwriters, who have always strived to bring raw, honest emotion to well-crafted lyrics. The duo seeks to build onto the great tradition of songwriters that have gone before them, and desires to contribute their unique perspective to the vast American folk landscape. The L’Esperances have shown great restraint in their approach to production. The two went into the studio seeking to create a sound that matched the vulnerability and intimacy of their lyrical content and alluded to the intimacy of their live performance. Old Bear Studio (Batavia, NY) Producer Chris Hoisington caught their vision. With his decisive ear for nuance, and an attitude of “less is more,” Chris helped craft an acoustic sound that features their two voices set over finger picked guitars, light piano, and cello. Inspired by production on records from decades past, Chris saw a place in the sound for the Mellotron, which often adds a soft foundation to the songs.

All together, “Every Seed Must Die” is a collection of sincere songs that encapsulates the feeling of being curled up in your favorite chair with a mug of tea (or whiskey) by the warm glow of an old space heater on a cold winter’s night. Though the world outside is bitter and cold, the warmth of this record feeds the soul and soothes the spirit.

credits

released May 18, 2018

Recorded at Old Bear Studio Batavia NY December 18th-22nd 2017
Produced by Chris Hoisington and Eric L’Esperance
Engineered, mixed, and mastered by Paul Mitro
Additional engineering by Ronald Shrock

Words and music written by Ashley and Eric L’Esperance
with the exception of words for “Jes Vous Salue, Marie” (Traditional Prayer)
Vocals and guitars performed by Ashley and Eric L’Esperance
Piano performed by Ashley L’Esperance
Mellotron performed by Ashley and Eric L’Esperance
with the exception of Mellotron on “Grateful” performed by Chris Hoisington
Cello performed by Daniel Zambrano

“River” written in loving memory of Stephen L’Esperance
“Every Seed Must Die” written in loving memory of Mary-Ann Messina
“Mary-Ann” written and “Je Vous Salue, Marie” composedin loving memory of Mary-Ann L’Esperance

Cover photography by Tommy Vo
Album Art and Design by Eric L’Esperance

www.thepromiseishope.com
All booking & contact inquiries
hello@thepromiseishope.com

© ℗ 2018 The Promise is Hope/TPIH Music (ASCAP)

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The Promise Is Hope Worcester, Massachusetts

Ashley and Eric L’Esperance first felt the electricity of their undeniable chemistry at an impromptu song swap. A year and a half later they were married and released their debut album “Where We’ve Been & Where We’re Going.” With deep reverence for songwriting, the duo’s music explores the mysteries of love, spirituality, and the joys and struggles of life’s journey. ... more

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Track Name: River
It’s the dark night of the soul
Never slept in a bed so cold
Can you hear me crying out
I’m aching and so alone

If your love were a river
On my back I would lay
Let your love be a river
Come and carry me away

I’m a ship lost at sea
With nothing here to anchor me
No wind to fill my sails
Why have you forsaken me?

If your love were a river
On my back I would lay
Let your love be a river
Come and carry me away

I have heard your cries, my love
I have never left your side, my love
The emptiness I know so well
I wept until the blood fell
I drank the bitter cup
Darkness came to swallow me up
I rose to meet the dawn
In brilliant light to carry you home

Let my love be a river
Rest your weary heart
Track Name: Brother
He moved to Colorado in his 27th year
Living like that old John Denver song
He said he had to try to learn to love again
We said “Go now, but brother don’t be long”

He move out to the mountains ‘cause he heard the air was fresh
Got news about his family, thought he’d go and find some rest
Said, “I think I’ll never want to learn love again”
We said “try and do your best - try not to give up just yet”

I never had a brother of my own
There was nobody else living in my home
But you’ve shown me the way of patient sadness
And I thank you for that

I was born into this life all on my own
There were others, but they told me they never made it home
So when I finally went and got myself grown
I made a family out of water and the blood that makes us whole

He came into my kitchen on a warm Sunday night
Said we have something to tell you, I went and saved your husband’s life
Remembering it now, I wish I’d looked into his eyes
And said, “you think it was his, but it was mine”

I never had a brother of my own
There was nobody else living in my home
But you’ve shown me the way of loving kindness
And I thank you for that

I’m sorry for the things that made you run
I wish that I could take them from you, I wish it could be done
In the very least I thought I’d let you know
No matter how lost you get in me You’ll always have a home

I never had a brother of my own
There was nobody else living in my home
But you’ve shown me the way of loving kindness, and patient sadness
And I thank you for that
I thank you for that
How can I thank you for that?
Track Name: Home
I find myself at 33 years old with an aching in my soul
Like longing for the warmth of a mid-summer’s night
While the world’s covered in snow
Or like the memory of a place I’ve never been
a place I once called home
Though I’ve tried to hide it
It’s worn me down to fight the question burning in my bones

I have been longing, longing to know - can I feel settled down in my soul
Can I be deeply secure, can I know it for sure that I am well
That all will be well

I am grateful for my family, friends, and my wife, for the work I was made to do
But those birds rise on the wind, and I wish just like them
To feel at ease in my own skin
This is deep calling out to deep, it is a thirst I cannot quench
I have felt it for some time, my well is running dry
And I am thirsting for some peace

I have been longing, longing to know - can I feel settled down in my soul
Can I be deeply secure, can I know it for sure that I am well
That all will be well

At the end of the day I just want to know that I’m alive
At the end of the day I just want to be

To be home, to be free, for my soul to sing a song called liberty
Track Name: Lost & Found
Everything felt possible, everything felt new
The tears streaming down my face brought healing, brought truth
I found a family, I found belonging. And I found you.
Like I was finally seeing in color, a new light shining through

I had you, oh

It never came down crashing or burning, it never fell apart
Just unraveled the miles and miles of string at the hem of my heart

I had my home here, I had these four strong walls, I had my ego filled
My broken cisterns just started leaking, and they drank from them still

I had you, oh

Now everything feels so impossible. Inconsistent, and false
I’m left wondering if all those years were just me talking to the wall

I lost my family, I lost belonging, the veil was torn
I lost my ego, my self-reliance, I lost my pedestal

But I found you
Track Name: Always I
Listen to us God, do you hear your daughters cry
Do you hear your children beg for peace
Look to us God, do you see our outstretched arms
Do you see the tears fall down our cheeks?

We're losing hope, oh God, when we see our people die
When we see our brothers slain each day
Restore us to yourself, and return to us our joy
So our mourning will start to sing

You dwell among us, God, and you live in broken hearts
Your glory's in the least of these
In the ones we overlook, you're in the ones who we oppress
The outcast, sinner, poor, and meek
The adultress, the diseased, you're in the murder and theif
The ones who will betray, you're in the ones who've walked away
And you're calling us home to stay
Track Name: Every Seed Must Die
It’s all fading fast
The world that I see won’t last
And it feels like the tighter I hold on the quicker it all slips away
And time knows no mercy
It slows down for nobody
The clockwork ticks steadily forward
[Driven by] a lifeless machinery

Seems like every seed must die
Fall to the earth for a while
It’s hard to lose, and it hurts to let go
But every seed must die
For new life to grow

I have a cousin
He said while he was praying
Every color burst to life around him in a shimmering dance
Then he looked me in the eye
Said “I’m no longer afraid to die
For the love that we share here together
Will never pass away”

Yes, and every seed must die
Fall to the earth for a while
It’s hard to lose, and it hurts to let go
But every seed must die
For new life to grow

And my heart beats that it’s true
My eyes perceive just a partial view
Though beauty seems to flee
It's a signpost for a world I will one day see
Track Name: Mary-Ann
We were tired of the phone calls, we were tired of the news
There was something so different about losing you
When the phone started ringing in the early part of dawn
We knew before we answered that you were gone

And the angels were singing, as we closed our teary eyes again
And the bells started ringing , as he welcomed home his Mary-Ann

It’s been such a long year, yes it’s been such a trial
Would you mind if I just sat here for a while
I’ve heard you’re good to talk to, and there’s so much left to say
Like “why do good things have to go away” - they go away

And your daughters were singing, as you closed your weary eyes again
And the phone kept on ringing
As you said your prayers with beads still in your hands

And we sang Joy, mother you’re full of grace, look at my face
Joy, mother, fruit of your womb, lights up the room

And we sing songs, you sing along as good as you can
And we'll sing your songs, we'll sing it strong as long as we can
As long as we can

We'll sing joy, mother, Mary-Ann
Track Name: Je Vous Salue, Marie
Je vous salue, Marie, pleine de grâce
le Seigneur est avec vous
Vous êtes bénie entre toutes les femmes
et Jésus, le fruit de vos entrailles
Est béni, Sainte Marie
Mère de Dieu,
Priez pour nous
Pauvres pécheurs maintenant et à l’heure
de notre mort
Amen
Track Name: Always II
Arise, forever, my sweet love
The hope you're looking for has come in flesh now
Arise, and never be afraid
For I am with you always
Track Name: Grateful
Walk with me to the waterside
See the sun sinking slow
Paint a canvas sky from blue to red and gold
Hold my hand sitting in the sand
The light slips past the trees
Draws back the curtain on a shimmering galaxy

And I wonder at the mystery of the breath inside our lungs
The very gift that sustains me, holds the life of everyone
And I am grateful, grateful to be alive

I wake with you lying by my side
As if you’ve always been there
Gentle curving frame, soft and golden hair
I still remember a place in time
All I had was a prayer
A simple wish - a life that we could share

And I when I wonder at the mystery of our love I’m overcome
Of all the billions of people our two hearts they beat as one
And I am grateful, grateful to be alive

But I get lost sometimes
My blood runs cold and my eyes grow blind
When I’ve reached my end and can’t find my way
You’re standing there right in front of me

Ooooo

So I wonder at the mystery of a love that seeks me out
Through every season of suffering, in my fear and in my doubt
And I am grateful, grateful to be alive
Track Name: Lullaby
My flower, my daisy, I am well pleased
With the person you are, and the person you’ll be
My daughter, my child, I’m with you always
Nothing will change that, for all of your days

When the world is against you, I will protect you
I’ll never reject you. I’ll be by your side
When you stand on the mountain, or down in the valley
I’ll hear when you call me; I’ll be your guide

My son, whom I love, I am well pleased
Not with what you’ve done or what you will achieve
But the soul in those bones was formed by the one
Who gave you the stars, and gave you his son

And if I am for you, tell me - who could be against you?
Who could ever test you, or threaten your life?
In all the sky above you, and all the earth below you
No one could ever know you quite like I do

My beacon of hope, you are the joy in my life
You’re the sunshine of spring, you are the blue in my eyes
You’re the white dove that’s come with the end of this rain
The colors of the rainbow, and the passing of our pain

I said that I would come, I told you it’d be done
And it’s not in my nature to break a promise
You waited for me, and now you will see
The glorious day that is upon us

For now, close your eyes
I'll hold you through the night
Darling, child of mine

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