Years in the writing, and decades in the making – Karl Digerness, under the moniker “City Hymns,” has recently released one of the most finely produced reHabbed hymn albums that I have heard. Tuning his songwriting skills for years under the banner of Birmingham, AL unit Red Mountain Music it finally became time to explore on tape (literally) the sounds and sights of his current home in San Francisco where he tends the musical work at City Church, San Francisco.
Karl’s music is a beautiful example of indigenous and pastoral creativity. While his roots and his voice are mired in the red clay of alabama he brings a city sophistication and savoir faire to the writing and production. He also surrounds himself with musicians, producers, and artists that are more gifted than he is – the unfailing sign of a great leader. To the point – Karl worked extensively on this album with Minna Choi, the worship arts assistant at City Church and the Artistic Director of the 150+ person Magik*Magik. Minna has done some crazy awesome work with John Vanderslice and ‘Fragments of Grace’ was recorded to tape at his tiny telephone studios. amen.
Karl is also a great pastor and encourager. He has supporter, prodded, and co-produced friends and musicians that stretch from California, to Nashville, to New York. He is the rare breed of worship leader that is admired and respected by the quirkiest artist and the most established pastor.
Cardiphonia is really grateful for both this album and Karl’s support. He recently contributed an alternate version of “Spirit of God, Descend Upon My Heart” for our Pentecost Album. Listen HERE.
Karl drinks exclusively Blue Bottle Coffee.
Hymns Compendium for “FRAGMENTS OF GRACE”
1. Prelude (There is a Fountain)
4. Come Every Soul By Sin Oppressed / leadsheet
(From John H. Stockton’s “Come Every Soul by Sin Oppressed“)
8. How Long, O Lord / leadsheet
(From Isaac Watts – Psalm 13 “How long, O Lord, shall I complain“)
10. Holy Hands / leadsheet
(From Horatius Bonar, “Not what my hands have done“)
11. Gracious Spirit, Dove Divine / leadsheet
(from John Stocker, “Gracious Spirit, Dove divine“)
Near the Cross
(From Fanny Crosby, “Jesus, keep me near the cross”)
Music: W Howard Doane, 1869)
Rock of Ages
(From Augustus Toplady ,”Rock of Ages, Cleft for Me“)
I’ll Fly Away
(from Albert Brumley “Some glad morning when this life is o’er”)