Behind the Song:
Saved By Skarlet
Throughout my life, I felt like I couldn't possibly be enough, achieve my heart's desires, or be at peace with myself. My worst enemy became the moments when I was alone with myself. Through verbal abuse, physical dispositions, timid personality, and an innocent heart I was trampled by everyone aside from the loving parents that were placed in my life. There were windows of time and moments that seemed surreal where even the smallest thing such as a compliment from a stranger made me feel like it was possible to feel 'normal', but that would soon be crushed by louder voices in my life.
I always held onto hope, but never FELT or saw evidence of hope in my own life. I began to build my faith at church and youth group, but was soon brought to an unbelievable low after a very serious bad relationship with a girl who was later given psychiatric help. Unfortunately it was too late, the damage to me was done and I needed a Savior more than ever.
I almost died three times at the hand of her actions, and God indefinitely extended his saving grace each time in a miraculous way. In one instance, I experienced an absolute miracle first-hand and there was no denying it was God. It was at this point that I gave up on everything I had tried to do myself and laid it all at the foot of the cross at a camp in Northern Maine. After three full hours of crying and comforting from several amazing Christians who didn't leave my side for one second, God began to stitch back together the open wounds on my heart as I confessed my sin and asked Him to come into my heart. That week I left changed with a fire inside that drove me to brainstorm ways I could help other individuals in similar situations like me.
A woman from the church we had been attending at the time offered me and my brother an electric guitar. This for me was an incredible opportunity since I had always wanted to try playing guitar, and I felt something click in my heart. That feeling was something my Spirit knew was going to happen soon...something I never would have dreamed of. My brother Matthew Middleton and I began building our guitar skills and jamming upstairs with a bare drum set and small microphone set. It was here that we began covering Christian rock songs, secular rock songs, and even rap. We learned quickly guitar and drums wasn't enough! God began to pour abilities into us that we had no clue we even had. Almost miraculously we were able to learn almost anything we touched: piano, bass, bongos, synth, acoustic guitar, singing, and even recording software. Our specialty was hard rock and metal, and Matt became the lead guitarist.
We soon formed a small trio band called Rising Ashes and worked from there up to the current hard rock band name "Saved By Skarlet". After working incredulously hard with little outcome something changed. All of a sudden we all began writing, composing, and recording hard rock music that seemingly flowed directly from our very veins. We had finished every song on the new full-length album "Out of Darkness" (2019) but there was something left inside my heart that was bursting at the seams. I just had to get it out, and after laying my head down on the recording studio desk I asked God to show me what this feeling was and what I should do about it. It hit me like a ton of bricks. I needed to write and produce a song included on this album that would do more than sound good and tell a story, I needed to create a composition that would make people FEEL the story, as if they were living it, and then leave them wanting to obtain the same passion for themselves.
I truly wanted this song to act as an angel, being present with individuals that struggle with self-harm and suicidal ideation, and helping them overcome it. There were a few songs that I truly connected with when I was going through my darkest time, and even when I did fail in resisting self harming tendencies, those songs carried me. Even more so, the words that God spoke through those songs carried me and in my mind if I could do the same for others through this song with the Saved By Skarlet team...our mission would be accomplished.
I began to write down everything that came to mind, and sure enough, in 8 hours an entire song had been built from top to bottom. I sat back and listened to this creation and just cried. I cried because I couldn't help but think of all of the hurting people out there who haven't experienced God's presence, undying tangible love, and peace. I wanted so badly for this song to help them encounter God. I prayed over the song, asked for God's guidance on everything involved with it including the album as a whole. I felt like there was one last thing it needed, and I realized what it was.
I had been dating an incredible young lady named Sara Buzdigian for two years and we had often sung together. She had a beautiful, rich, soothing voice and I realized that the last thing this song needed was her vocals in the bridge of the song. The reason is actually deeper than what it may seem. You see, I wanted to present this heartfelt, powerful portion of the song in a way that would show how the love of my life is here with me, has helped me heal, and will forever be a part of my testimony. God used her in incredible ways throughout the healing process, and she mended many of my past wounds as well. Together we wrote and completed the bridge with gang vocals and a powerful, climactic point that brings tears to fans' eyes every time the band performs it.
In conclusion, "Surrender All" has reached countless parts of the world and continues to impact individuals' lives from all over. We hear testimonies of people who have struggled with suicide and listen to that song before bed, utilizing it as a weapon against anxiety and stress, and connecting with God through its message. In addition, a once timid, insecure, damaged boy from the smallest state in the United States is now lead singing this powerful song with Saved By Skarlet in large music festivals and concerts and even performing alongside bands such as: Disciple, Decyfer Down, War of Ages, Spoken, Seventh Day Slumber, Oh Sleeper, Righteous Vendetta, The Protest, and many more. If it weren't for the support, encouragement, and love from family, band members, and the SBS team we wouldn't be able to do what we do, and for that we are eternally grateful.
Thank you for reading the backstory of "Surrender All" and please, download and share it wherever you go so that we can continue to impact people from every nation and generation with the undying arms of God that capture us in love.