Are you curious about what happened in the kitchen while Sycamore Worship cooked the Never Less album? Do you want to know all the deets about their songwriting process and how the team gets their creative juices flowing?
Well, look no further. This article will take you behind the scenes through an exclusive interview with the songwriters themselves. Let’s dive right in!
Could you introduce yourselves and tell us what songs you wrote on the Never Less album?
Dr. Rose: “My name is Roseline Chima-Kalu. I’m a medical doctor, and I’m privileged to serve on the Worship Team of Sycamore Church. I wrote Now Praise.”
Dr. Loni: “I’m Oluwaloni Familoni, a medical doctor. I serve with the Sycamore Worship Team and wrote most of the melodies for YGAP (You’ve Got a Praise), Can’t Go On, and God of My Journey. I also wrote some of Overjoyed and You Are God.”
Dr. Rose: “He also wrote parts of Whole Wide World and My Rest, I believe.”
Wow! At this point, we weren’t counting. Still, we 7elebrate grace!
If you could describe the new album in one word, what would it be?
Dr. Rose: “I’m not sure I have one word that could adequately capture the entire album, but I will say it is an Invitation.”
Dr. Loni: “It’s hard to describe it in one word, but if I had to, Focus would be the word. I believe all the songs help to focus on Jesus, who is deserving of the Focus. They draw my heart away from distractions, turning it towards worshipping Him and living the life He’s called me to.”
I believe all the songs help to focus on Jesus, who is deserving of the Focus. They draw my heart away from distractions, turning it towards worshipping Him and living the life He’s called me to.
That’s just amazing, and I totally Agree. from the songs I’ve heard, there’s a clear invitation to worship and experience Jesus. Moving on, could you describe your songwriting process for us? How do you come up with lyrics, ideas, and melodies?
Dr. Rose: “Diverse ways, actually. Sometimes, it can be based on something God is emphasizing in church for that season. A lot of times, ideas can also come from processes God is walking one through. Following this, you get a burden for someone else who will listen. Sometimes, the lyrics come in bits and pieces that could take weeks, months, or even years to string together. Other times, the entire song is finished in a day. But it’s always a beautiful, humbling process from start to finish.”
We found Dr. Rose’s response an interesting reminder that there is no one-size-fits-all method for songwriting.
Dr. Loni: “You Are God was an overflow of a meditation from Hebrew. I wrote down a few lines in my journal. It was surprisingly easy to sing, and the lyrics almost flowed naturally. When I got stuck on the bridge, I remembered a line Rose had sung ‘spontaneously’ in a church service. So I threw that in as the bridge: “You deserve all my worship.” Honestly, I thought I was doing the “rough work” for Pastor, so I sent it to Him to see if there were any lyrics that he wanted to rewrite or add to it. I was shocked to find it on the service sheet the following Sunday. That’s an experience that has never happened.”
Honestly, I thought I was doing the “rough work” for Pastor, so I sent it to Him to see if there were any lyrics that he wanted to rewrite or add to it. I was shocked to find it on the service sheet the following Sunday. That’s an experience that has never happened.
Wow. Talk about a God-inspired songwriting process. It was beautiful to hear that Dr. Loni was inspired in the place of scripture meditation. And we can imagine how shocked he would have been, seeing his “rough work” on the service sheet 😂.
It was also really exciting to hear that Pastor Tolu is a major contributor to the songwriting process. By the way, we think Dr. Rose should get songwriting credits for her spontaneous line. What do you think?
How has your songwriting process evolved since Sycamore Worship’s First Album, Sound of the New? What lessons did you learn from that album?
Dr. Loni: “I think, honestly, it’s stayed much the same at heart for me, but the roots have gone deeper. The desire to birth a God-thing simply and creatively has stayed the same. But I never saw myself as a songwriter, so getting to write lyrics for this album is humbling and encouraging.”
Dr. Rose: “In songs like My Rest and Can’t Go On, we left pockets of space between songs for listeners to worship freely. Also, the fact that it’s a live album gives a feeling of an atmosphere of real worship and freedom.”
Final question: What impact do you hope The Never Less album has on listeners?
Dr. Rose: “We hope the live atmosphere provides an avenue for Heaven-touching-Earth moments and Jesus-encounters. We also hope that there will be a reminder of who God is to us, which can be an encouragement to anyone listening. He is all we really need.”
We hope the live atmosphere provides an avenue for Heaven-touching-Earth moments and Jesus encounters.
Dr. Loni: “I pray the songs will point to Jesus and keep the listeners fixed on Him as they listen or even when they recollect pieces of the songs. I hope that people will return to these songs whenever they need an ‘address’ to His presence.”
We’ve come to the end of this interview, and we found the songwriting insights our guests shared to be genuinely refreshing. We hope you did, too.
Speaking of things that are refreshing, Never Less: Live in Church is out now on all streaming platforms. Stream it now, and let us know your favorite songs in the comment section.
Interview by Toluwalase Soneye
Lase volunteers with the Content Team at Sycamore Church.
(Blogposts are creative expressions generously provided for Sycamore Church. The ideas and thoughts do not necessarily represent the position of Sycamore Church)