The Story Behind the Song: I’ll Wait For You

I’ll Wait For You

Here in the darkness
I’m listening for Your Word
The silence gently whispers
but I still haven’t heard
what You want of me

I’ll wait for You
show me Your plan
I’ll wait for You
until I understand

Here in the quietness
I’m looking for a sign
Come show me, Lord,
and teach me
the depth of Your design
Your great love for me

I’ll wait for You
until the silence breaks
I’ll wait for You
for as long as it takes
(c)1993 Lyric Jonathan Varnell/Isaac Miller//Music: Isaac Miller/Jonathan Varnell

Isaac and I were getting ready for a church worship service one morning when he began to noodle on his keyboard. The chord riff for this song seemed to pop out of his fingers and I began to listen. I must have asked if I could write words to his chords because within about 20 minutes we had almost finished it. We sang it over a few times to commit it to memory, both excited at the power of it.
We never got to record it because life got in the way as it often does.

If I remember my state of mind at the time, Isaac and I were working on an album with a bunch of other guys in a band named Awake (I still have T shirts). Since then someone else appropriated the name and appear to have a certain amount of success. Anyway, all of us were in the throes of change with one thing or another so this subject seemed to be natural fodder for a song. It must have been on my mind quite a bit because the imagery remains so vivid to this day. Recently I got in touch with Isaac, not having spoken with him for a few years, about the song and found he couldn’t even remember writing it!

About the time Awake broke up (someone stole all our instruments from my van) Isaac taught me the chords and I memorized it. Fast forward 20 years, I began trying it on guitar. The fingering kinda’ challenged me since the first chord is shaped like a F2 add Maj7/Bb or, as a Bb chord it would probably be a Bbsus#4/6. So if you played an FM7 and dropped the A note to open up the G string then put a Bb on the bass, you’d have to use your 1st finger (index) on the Bb, 4th finger on F (D string), 2nd finger on C (B string) leaving open the G & high E strings. It took my head a while to wrap around this finger position–don’t know why I play a lot of hard chords in other songs. Now that I have it, of course, the chord feels natural.

My plan is to record it with acoustic driving it at first then to replace the notes with single notes on the electric guitar on the second verse. I’m not sure about the rest of the arrangement because all I have in my head’s ear is a feel–which means I’ll have to experiment. What I play on the video is a raw form powerful in it own right.

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2 Responses to “The Story Behind the Song: I’ll Wait For You”

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