Put on your dancing shoes and get your clapping hands ready.
The world is in my bones
It makes me wrestle with you
Oh, but you have claimed me
The Animals’ “House of the Rising Sun” may be described as a place of “sin and misery”, but Ike Ndolo’s “Land of the Rising Sun” is taking back the sunrise with the rhythm of a driving train.
Released in 2015, “Land of the Rising Sun” explores the many trials one goes through to keep their faith in a secular world. The song notes that no matter how far we stray, even to “the devil’s table,” we are claimed by Christ and he lives within all of us.
Ndolo’s chorus is an unabashed proclamation that he belongs to God and to heaven, for which he uses the land of the rising sun as an allusion. We especially liked his poetic way of describing heaven, rather than just coming out and saying it. It’s these little artistic elements that make Ndolo’s Christian anthem so powerful.
“I belong to the land of the rising sun where the grave is no more and the war has been won.”
The music reminds us of old-timey blues, with a guitar line that dips and twangs through a natural chord progression, and almost sounds a little like Clapton’s “Rollin’ and Tumblin.'” The ecstatic tempo makes the song irresistible and leads into the chorus excellently, nearly demanding that all who listen break out into dance and clapping.
Ndolo grew up with music in his household and he further developed his talent at St. Timothy Catholic Church in Mesa, Arizona, where he was mentored by industry-topping artists such as Tom Booth and Matt Maher. In an interview with PlayerFM, Ike explained his inspiration for writing music:
“Grace is huge because you haven’t even asked for it but it’s available … Nobody is beyond Grace. God is always near. We are not abandoned, that to me is encouraging and beautiful. Even in the midst of our own brokenness in a broken world, a very broken world, we are not abandoned. I believe in the endurance of the soul.” – Ike Ndolo
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