1985 [myrrh]
At the time of the Swimming in a Human Ocean recording, Servant was pretty much homeless. In 1985 the community that Servant had been a part of for all these years began to unravel. We began looking for a new base where members could become engaged in inner-city ministry, and also where the band could more economically travel to their concerts. Throughout the summer and fall of 1985 roughly half of the community moved to inner-city Cincinnati, Ohio. Bob Hardy by this time was gone. After a European tour in 1984, Bob had had enough of the road life.

Losing Bob was difficult—we had worked hard together for a good spell. Fortunately for the band he was replaced by someone we knew. Eric Odell had been an integral part of the band support crew, working for a number of years in the community’s Rooftop Records office to promote Servant's songs on the radio for the CCM Top 40.. Eric joined the band in December of 1984 and began rehearsing and contributing to songs for the next album during the Spring of 1985.

1985-Swimming in a Human Ocean
Lynn Nichols and Dave Perkins
Sandie and Dave Perkins in the studio bus
Eric Odell now on vocals

Having recently left Oregon, and as yet with no new home (Cincinnati was to happen several months later), we found ourselves at times in New York City, and at other times holed up in a camp on the northern shores of the Chesapeake Bay recording what was to become our final album. Thematically centered on the human condition, the project found a tremendous energy through the relentless influence of producer David Perkins. Dave’s passion is all over this record. A gifted musician and producer himself, he would later be a member of the legendary Chagall Guevara.

The losses and sense of disorientation during this time was devastating. Despite this, or more likely because of this, something about the transitional nature of sojourn made itself into this record providing a soul that might not have otherwise been there. Hindsight often provides details that may be invisible to the present, and surely that is true here. There is a passion akin to Light Maneuvers, (Power, Look Through His Eyes) but also a depth of soul, a cry born from the human condition, (The Dance, Human Heart) and a desperate need for the timeless care and direction of God (Timeless Love, I will, Love Never Fails). Even in the midst of this vulnerability, there are strong challenges that address the need for faithfulness with marriage, (Harder to Finish), and faithfulness with money (Million). As well as working behind the scenes, Eric Odell was part of the band for about eighteen months, contributing both in the studio and on stage, adding the male vocal tracks on Human Ocean, and touring throughout 1985 and into the spring of 1986. After that, Sandie would go on to sing all of the songs for the remainder of the band’s life together.

band promotional photo
Rob and Eric
Sandie and Eric, "Harder to Finish"
Sandie, what is SHE wearing?
Matt, what is HE wearing?
pacific northwest festival
pacific northwest festival
pacific northwest festival. now what is Rob wearing?
Owen, sound check
Chris Callis album shot

Photos: C.Callis, C.Briscoe, and unknown

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