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Student: What is the meaning behind TS?

Chris: Tortured Soul is my interpretation of the day of judgement, a belief in the Christian church where every man must stand before God and be held accountable for their actions. It is an account of a single person standing before God. I chose to write it from God's perspective. Specifically, it is about God's feelings of sorrow about damning the person in the song.

If you are a parent you can truly understand this. When your child does something wrong you punish them, but of course you still love them. And it is out of this love that they are punished. It helps the child to realize that what they have done is wrong. Now, this is my opinion. I do not have all the answers, and I will never claim to. But I believe that it is the same way with God.

The ONLY difference I see between believers ("Christians" if you will. I'm talking about true believers, the ones that actually walk the walk) and non-believers is that believers realize that they have sin, and they accept Christ's sacrafice to wash the sin away (This brings up a whole other subject about Christ being the "Door" and the "Way"). I know, it seems like I am going off track here, but the song has a lot to do with this....because it is about God sending this person to Hell. It is important to know my beliefs on this subject if you want to understand the meaning behind the song. I believe that Hell is that place where people who have not come to the realization that they DO have sin, and that they DO need Christ are 'forced' to see it. Just like parents sometimes hate punishing their children, I believe God does not want to damn anyone to Hell. But in the end it ends up being a good thing.

When a child is punished they are 'forced' to see that what they have done is wrong (hopefully).

Student: What made you write the song?

Chris: My faith, my beliefs. My observations of people. My desire to know God and share Him with others. At the time I wrote this song my band was playing in bars in the Reno, Nevada area. I wanted to create a song that would hopefully shock people and give them a glimpse into who I believe God is.

Student: What affect does the song have on you, and on the listener?

Chris: Well, you can't really say that it is a happy or uplifting song (unless you know my personal beliefs). I purposely wrote the music to be dark, and I actually came up with a new guitar tuning to really make it different than all the other songs my band was playing at the time. The song sets a certain mood, it's mournful. The song is cryptic as far as the lyrics go. I don't bluntly say "This is God speaking, and I'm sending you to hell". When I write I try to leave a lot of the interpretation up to the listener. Regardless of the individual interpretation, the song is no doubt a sad one. It makes me sad. And I believe that it would do the same to the listener.

Student: What was your inspiration for writing the song?

Chris: This is the same as "What made you write the song?". I was reading one of my favorite books, "The Pilgrims Progress" by John Bunyan, at the time I wrote this song. There is a part in the book where the main character talks to a "tortured soul" who is locked up in a cage. "The Pilgrim's Progress" is an awesome alegory of the "Christian" walk. It has inspired me to write many songs!

Student: Any other comments about song, art, band, yourself?

Chris: Just like an artist creating a painting, writers must also try to create a "painting" using words, thoughts, ideas, and emotion. Music adds another dimension, dynamics. Through sounds, mostly vocals, musicians take the listener through a "roller coaster" of emotion; from barley audible whispers and gentle piano, to screams and overdriven electric guitar. What makes music so incredibly powerful, when done correctly, is that the artist must feel what they are doing. Singers must feel the emotions and ideas to be able to portray them to the audience effectively. In my opinion, it is all or nothing. My faith has made it that much easier to "enter" into music. God is my passion and inspiration. It is expression. That's all art is. It sounds so simple, yet it is extremely complex. It is the "heart" of our society. It is the desire for expression that relates music to writing, to painting, to sewing, to cooking...and the list goes on. Those who express themselves often inspire each other...... I can't paint, but if I see a work of art that has the ability to "touch" me, those thoughts and emotions that are excited by the painting can easily turn into lyrics, and into music.