THE BIRTH OF PEACE ON EARTH
James Casto was on a mission to write a Christmas song for several
upcoming songwriter showcases. At the time, he had several close friends
that were enduring deep heartache. They had experienced the death of
friends and family, financial hardship, extreme physical pain, and much
sorrow. He thought about the familiar phrase at the holidays “peace
on earth” and how removed that was from his friends. He knew that
they would give anything to experience even a moment of true peace.
So, initially, the song was written as a plea to heaven for help.
Upon finishing the song, Casto sent a copy to friend and multi-platinum
award winning songwriter Donna I. Douglas, whose songs have been sung
by artists like Faith Hill, Usher and many others. Douglas thought the
idea was extraordinary and suggested that the song would have broader
appeal if the lyric was more generalized and spoke to some of the contemporary
challenges we had recently faced as a nation. Douglas jotted down some
suggestions resulting in Casto inviting her to co-write the song.
Next came the demo. Ronny Palmer, Casto’s engineer in Nashville, said
that Lila McCann was available and would be the perfect choice to sing
it. And sing it she did! Lila’s stunning vocal gifting so emotionally
connected with song that she blew everyone away!
Casto always listens to his demos the very next morning after they
are cut. He said that when he listened to Lila’s vocals, “he wept
and that never happens to him.” At that moment he knew that this
was much bigger than he was. He later played it for Douglas and the
waterfalls continued. She agreed that with Lila singing it, the potential
for the song was unlimited.
It was when Douglas played the song for her business partner, Jay Clark
at Slingshot Entertainment Group, that they decided to pursue the possibility
of Lila releasing the song as a single! They also felt that the lyrical
content of the song lends itself to a perfect opportunity to raise money
for charities. The have delegated 10% of the profits from Peace on Earth
to benefit organizations that support the families of soldiers serving
in the Middle East, and the victims of the hurricanes and 911.
It is our hope that Peace on Earth touches the hearts of those who
have lost so much and reminds the rest world that amidst all of life’s
most difficult challenges that true peace is only a prayer away.