The piano and vocal composition by Jonathon Roberts, Dear Friend, juxtaposes a floating melody with virtuosic piano playing to represent Apostle John's letter to his friends.
Dear friend, I pray for your health. Even as your soul is getting along well. It gives me great joy. There’s no greater joy. I have no greater joy.
O my dear friend, you are faithful to the Name, and to my brothers and sisters, though they’re strangers to you, they know your love. I know your love.
I write to you. I don’t write to your friend who loves to be first. He will not welcome us, spreading malicious nonsense. So I will call attention, I will call attention. Dear Friend, do not imitate evil but what is good. It is from the Name.
I have much to tell you, but not with pen and ink. I’ll see you soon, face to face. I will see you soon.
Peace to you. Your friends here send their greetings. Greet my friends there by nam
Composer and performer
3 John 1:1–14
1 The elder unto the well-beloved Gai´us, whom I love in the truth.
2 Beloved, I wish above all things that thou mayest prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospereth. 3 For I rejoiced greatly, when the brethren came and testified of the truth that is in thee, even as thou walkest in the truth. 4 I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth.
Gaius' Hospitality Commended
5 Beloved, thou doest faithfully whatsoever thou doest to the brethren, and to strangers; 6 which have borne witness of thy charity before the church: whom if thou bring forward on their journey after a godly sort, thou shalt do well: 7 because that for his name's sake they went forth, taking nothing of the Gentiles. 8 We therefore ought to receive such, that we might be fellow helpers to the truth.
The Opposition of Diotrephes
9 I wrote unto the church: but Diot´re-phes, who loveth to have the pre-eminence among them, receiveth us not. 10 Wherefore, if I come, I will remember his deeds which he doeth, prating against us with malicious words: and not content therewith, neither doth he himself receive the brethren, and forbiddeth them that would, and casteth them out of the church.
The Good Report concerning Demetrius
11 Beloved, follow not that which is evil, but that which is good. He that doeth good is of God: but he that doeth evil hath not seen God. 12 Deme´tri-us hath good report of all men, and of the truth itself: yea, and we also bear record; and ye know that our record is true.
13 I had many things to write, but I will not with ink and pen write unto thee: 14 but I trust I shall shortly see thee, and we shall speak face to face. Peace be to thee. Our friends salute thee. Greet the friends by name.
A piano and vocal composition setting the book of 3 John. The gentle melody is nearly entirely whole steps and floats over a rapid-fire piano section--John's words are both calm and energizing. The distant feeling of whole steps gives way to a half step in the final vocal line as John prepares to visit in person.
Jonathon Roberts is a composer and sound designer for games, film, theatre, and ensembles. His style grew out of classical and jazz training, and evolved through quality life adventures: touring the country in an RV with a one person theater piece on the Apostle Paul, living in Brooklyn with an improv music ensemble, performing in a downtown NYC absurdist comedy band, and a long stint writing music for the renowned slot machine company, High 5 Games. He has released four albums including the latest, Cities a song cycle personifying biblical cities. He created the popular podcast/web series ComposerDad Vs. Bible, in which ComposerDad accepts intense compositional challenges from a mysterious Bible while out with his kids. He frequently collaborates on music and theater projects with his wife, actor Emily Clare Zempel. They live in Beacon, NY, with their two boys and a tangled box of electrical cords. www.jonathonroberts.com