“I Will Be What I Believe,” by Blake Gillette is a collection of songs — new and old — written and arranged especially for Primary-aged children of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
When Gillette was challenged by his then Primary music director wife to write a song for Primary he accepted. Writing tunes wasn’t something new to him.
“I had written a couple of EFY-style songs in high school and on my mission,” Gillette shares on his blog at blakegillettemusic.com, “and a couple of wedding songs for her, but I had never attempted a Primary song.”
His attempt resulted in “I Will Be What I Believe,” the lovely title song for his new songbook and CD.
Along with five original compositions, the book includes six pieces that Gillette calls “mash-ups” — arrangements of familiar Primary songs or hymns as medleys. For example, he successfully combines “I Hope They Call Me on a Mission”/“Army of Helaman,” or “My Heavenly Father Loves Me”/“I Feel My Savior’s Love.” A piano solo, “One Eternal Round,” combines “I Love To See the Temple” and “If You Could Hie to Kolob,” which, in a twist of what might be wry humor, has the option of being repeated in an eternal round.
Intermediate skill level on the piano is necessary to play the accompaniments easily. Listening to the CD would assist in hearing how each piece is performed, especially the original songs. It’s upbeat, faith-promoting music that most Primary-aged children and their families will enjoy.
The book contains 11 songs, while the CD contains 13. The book can be purchased with the CD included, or the book and CD may be purchased separately. Six of the songs on the CD are performed beautifully by a children’s choir that includes: Afton Higbee, Chloe Barrus, Hallie Taylor, AJ Wankier, Ruby Cox, Samuel LeVitre, Sydney Anderson.
Gillette is a full-time orthopedic surgeon in Spanish Fork, Utah, who writes music as a hobby. His website contains a music video featuring children singing the book’s title song, stories about how each song came to be and tips for performance
Rosemarie Howard lives in a 100-year-old house on Main Street in Springville, Utah. She enjoys creating multimedia projects. Her website is at dramaticdimensions.com.