John Ludwig | One Night in Bethlehem

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One Night in Bethlehem

by John Ludwig

This original cast recording is a creative and musically rich unpacking of the Biblical narrative telling of the people and events around the birth of Jesus.
Genre: Spiritual: Contemporary Christian
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. One Night in Bethlehem (Intro)
0:54 $0.99
2. A Little Past Old
2:16 $0.99
3. News
2:27 $0.99
4. Yes to Love
4:33 FREE
5. Kicking Mommy in the Tummy
2:25 $0.99
6. I'll Give My All
4:49 $0.99
7. Rejoice
4:27 FREE
8. Room at the Inn
5:21 $0.99
9. Glory Was the Word
3:51 $0.99
10. Love Hate Ambition and Power
3:12 $0.99
11. Amazed Certain Sure and Believing
4:05 $0.99
12. Some Call Us Wise
3:32 $0.99
13. Pure Peace
3:57 $0.99
14. One Night in Bethlehem
4:20 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
Indie songwriter and playright John Ludwig has written this 13 song musical that does justice to the start of "the greatest story ever told". One Night in Bethlehem unfolds and unpacks the Biblical narrative from the gospels of Matthew and Luke in a way that lifts the characters off the pages and into your heart. The approachable angel Gabriel (Gabe) brings God's messages to Zechariah, Mary, Joseph, and the Wise Men and helps foil the forces of evil's malicious intentions against Jesus. God's plan for humanity's salvation starts with the unexpected people the world wouldn't choose who are called to these eternally remembered roles. It ends with a challenge for all of us to carry the story forward.

John has this to say about the process and the results:
"One of the themes in ONiB is that God's things happen in God's time - not ours. Before this cast recording became a reality, there was a single song a decade earlier, then one more and a plotline that brought us Gabe and Lu as protagonist and antagonist. Then a few years and the script and lyrics and music started happening. Then waiting and feeling I wasn't getting it done. The co-writes with Scott went out for years. A couple other albums happened. Life happened. But ONiB didn't. But then God's time did happen - and within a month this album was recorded. Listening to this, I hope you too will realize that when He gives you something this good, the waiting part of the journey is well worth it.

One of the other themes in ONiB is the unlikely choices (by human standards) God makes for the 'starring' roles in his story. This writer certainly falls in that category and is eternally grateful to have been chosen to tell the start of salvation's story. This story of a savior baby is told in a way that is ultimately inclusive enough for those of any faith or even no faith to hear and perhaps start a journey towards Jesus. A final theme is bringing out the humanity of these well known names. Linking their humanity to yours so that you too realize you're part of the story.

I can't say enough good to cover "thanks" to all the musicians, singers, and staff at TMC Studios who brought this recording to life with great care, great craftsmanship, great love, and glorious results. I hope you'll agree the wait was well worth it".

Because it is about the Christmas story which many people know, and they will be interested to learn new things about the people involved. This musical is similar in style to Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dream Coat, with characters that are identifiable and personable. There are a number of musical styles that highlight and emphasize the characters who sing them. Typically, each song has a key word that reflects that/those characters role in the storyline.

topically and musically songs vary as follows:
A Little Past Old (Zechariah) Humorous
News (Gabe) The News is blues!
Yes to Love (Mary) Beautiful ballad
Kicking Mommy in the Tummy (Mary, Elizabeth) Pregnant fun!
I'll Give My All (Joseph) Stirring ballad of affirmation
Rejoice (Zechariah, Elizabeth) Showy production number
Room at the Inn (Innkeeper) Quiet guitar
Glory was the Word (Shepherds) best night ever! Shepherds rockin' it!
Love Hate Ambition and Power (Herod) Grungy evil at work
Some Call us Wise (Wise Men) Haunting and melodic
Pure Peace (Simeon, Anna) A peaceful duet
Amazed Certain Sure and Believing (Joseph, Mary) Stirring duet of 2 special parents
One Night in Bethlehem (Entire cast) Early Mumford-ish Americana

The musical is full of hope and redemption for (in) the world, and many people are looking for hope. A couple verses from the title cut summarize it all:

The heroes of this love story, are ones we wouldn’t choose
But when the voice of the Lord appeared, not one of them refused
Unlikely cast, unlikely path, on the road to eternity
Why start the reign of grace, in such obscurity?

When the Master is the servant, the world turns upside down
God reveals his ways to be, so unlike our own
Creator to creation, pure love, holy and divine
Jesus, Messiah, with us, till the end of time



to write a review


Great Compilation of Music for the Season of Christmas
One Night in Bethlehem is a unique twist on a timeless story. The songs perfectly fit the characters they represent. I could write endless praises for this album but would run out of space. So in summary: "I'll Give My All" will catch you in the throat - powerful. Just powerful. "One Night in Bethlehem" is a great chorus and finale to the album. One could see a cast taking their bows. "A Little Past Old", "Kicking Mommy in the Tummy" bring smiles. "News" has some great harmonica breaks. "Yes to Love", "Amazed Sure Certain and Believing" and "Pure Peace" are lovely ballads. "Room at the Inn" is contemplative. "Rejoice" is upbeat and fun. "Glory Was the Word" rocks! "Love Hate Ambition and Power" kicks it in its own right. "Some Call Us Wise" is a new take on a song for the Wise Men - finally something other than 'we three kings'.