DOWNLOAD MP3: CJ Ray – Sweet Surrender (Sarah McLachlan Song)

Lyric-centric, rock-infused-singer-songwriter, CJ Ray releases his electrifying interpretation version of Sarah McLachlan’s hit “Sweet Surrender” today with a premiere via American Blues Scene. “As a songwriter, lyrics have always been crucial to me and when I hear a song with a powerful message, I just want to be wrapped up in it and become a part of the message,” says CJ. “I hope my treatment of her song is received in the same way as I approached its’ making — with love, thankfulness and respect.”

CJ Ray is set to release his latest EP, For Each Other, on June 18th. Comprised of five original songs and “Sweet Surrender,” the EP boasts visceral and heartfelt performances by the songwriter and his band and was produced by Paul Fig (Deftones, Coheed and Cambria, Trivium.) The majority of the songs were written and recording during the Covid-19 pandemic and the social issues surrounding that time. The songwriter explores themes that include returning to normal life, caring for others, appreciating the past, desiring freedom, newness and rebirth.

While pursuing his desire to inspire, CJ Ray, known as Granddude to his family, brings forth his collection of lyric-centered rock, pop and contemporary music. Inspired by the sounds of Train, Gavin DeGraw, Jack Johnson, John Mayer and Jason Mraz.

A son, husband, father and Granddude, family is at the forefront of CJ’s life. “My granddaughter calls me Granddude, which I adore and I absolutely love being a dad to my kids,” he says. “I think having so many connections to others creates the ability for me to write music from numerous perspectives. I have been a kid and I have been in trouble and I have been a success and I have been a failure… I think the breadth of life allows one to interpret life from a perspective that can contain nuggets of wisdom and desire not to waste a word or a moment. I hope the listener feels that in my lyrics.”

Raised in a suburb north of Chicago, CJ started playing music at a young age at church and with friends from his middle school. His first venture was as a drummer in a four-member rock band that covered songs from bands like Led Zeppelin, Van Halen, and Bad Company and for a short while, featured now-famous classmate, Tom Morello on guitar and lead vocals.

This Nevada based, singer-songwriter is seeking to find the best avenue to share his songs of hope and grace as well as other emotional subjects of the heart, mind and soul. CJ wants his music to make his listeners find joy and peace in any circumstance they find themselves in. In the summer of 2020, CJ Ray released “24 and 8,” his emotional tribute to Kobe Bryant and his daughter, Gianna. Prior to that, he released a ten song LP, Be Where You Are, with the lead single, “Words,” appearing in the 2019 feature film “High Strung Free Dance.”

“Sweet Surrender” is the third single to be released from For Each Other following “Death Valley” and “Today.”

WATCH VIDEO BELOW

LYRICS

It doesn’t mean much

It doesn’t mean anything at all

The life I’ve left behind me is a cold room

I’ve crossed the last line

From where I can’t return

Where every step I took in faith betrayed me

And led me from my home

And sweet surrender

Is all that I have to give

Take me in, no question’s asked

You strip away the ugliness that surrounds me

(Who are you?)

Are you an angel?

Am I already that gone?

I only hope that I won’t disappoint you

When I’m down here on my knees

(Who are you?)

And sweet surrender

Is all that I have to give

(Who are you?)

And sweet surrender

Is all that I have to give

Don’t understand

The touch of your hand

I would be the one to fall

I miss the little things

I miss everything about you

Doesn’t mean much

It doesn’t mean anything at all

The life I left behind me is a cold room

(Who are you?)

And sweet surrender

Is all that I have to give

(Who are you?)

And sweet surrender

Is all that I have to give

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