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Had Enough “Pope in America” Coverage Yet? Now There’s His New Album!

Pope Francis - Wake Up

As someone brought up in the Catholic Church, I should have probably known about Wake Up, the new album from Pope Francis. Subtitled “Music Album with His Words and Prayers,” the album features 11 medieval/sacred hits that have been “reworked by contemporary composers with extracts from Pope Francis’ speeches.” And before you ask, Dr. Luke, Max Martin or Rick Rubin were not involved–although that would have been kinda cool, no? I think they should have called Al Jourgensen to concoct some industrial metal versions.

However, I should point out that Tony Pagliuca (see below) was a founding member of Le Orme, a prog-rock band. The Pope goes prog? Yep. Sadly, “progressive” means something different to Catholics. It would be have been fun to hear Francis bust out with a version of “The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway.”

I quote from the press release:

The album’s tracks range from pop to rock, from Latin music to Gregorian chants, and represent a harmonic link between tradition and modernism. It is contemporary music that communicates with the language of tradition.

Wake Up! includes 11 tracks where the Pontiff addresses universal issues such as peace, work, dignity, care, and attention for people most in need. We can hear the Pope speaking in Italian, Spanish, English, and Portuguese to allow everyone to take away the hopes that Pope Francis has for each one of us. The album comes with a 24 page booklet that includes prayers, lyrics, and extracts featured on the album in the original language used by the Holy Father as well as translations in English and Spanish.

Well, what about a tracklisting? Glad you asked.

“Cuidar El Planeda” contains a literal rearrangement of the beautiful ‘Cantico delle Creature’ by San Francesco D’Assisi that was part of a speech given by The Pope in Rome and is one of the albums most suggestive tracks. [Suggestive? Like early Prince? – AC] The other 10 hymns, from “Salve Regina” to “Veni Sancte Spiritus” are all rearranged in modern style by highly talented musicians with Don Giulio Neroni heading the artistic direction. Wake Up! boasts prestigious contributions from Giorgio Kriegsch, Tony Pagliuca (founding member of the legendary band ‘Le Orme’), Mite Balduzzi, Giuseppe Dati, Lorenzo Piscopo, and the orchestral director Dino Doni.

If you’d like a free listen, your prayers have been answered. Just go here for a guilt-free audition of “Wake Up! Go! Go! Forward!” (I swear to God that’s the name of the song. Why can’t I stop thinking of Wham?)

Sadly, His Holiness has made it impossible to download or embed the track, so you’ll just have to listen on SoundCloud. No very charitable, is it? The press release says that an “instant download” is available, but I can’t see that anywhere on the SoundCloud page. It can be shared but not downloaded. BIG difference.

If you would like to pre-order the album which is due November 27, go here.  All proceeds will be donated to fund that supports refugees.  I know what Dad’s getting for Christmas.


1 – “Annuntio vobis gaudium magnum!” (6:54) – Extract Of Speech in Italian.
First greeting from the Central Loggia of St. Peter’s Basilica – Vatican City (13th March 2013)
Music Track: Tu Es Petrus with an insert of Adonai (Jewish traditional prayer)

2 – “Salve Regina” (5:17) – Extracts Of Speeches in Spanish and Italian.
Meeting with young people from Argentina in the Cathedral of St. Sebastian Cathedral in Rio De Janeiro – Brazil (25th July 2013)
Music Track: Salve Regina

3 – “Cuidar el planeda” (4:46) – Extract Of Speech in Spanish.
Speech in the occasion of the Pope visit at FAO in Rome – Italy (20th November 2014)
Music Track: Cuidar El Planeda (Cantico delle creature in Spagnolo)

4 – “¿Por qué sufren los ninos?” (5:20) – Extract Of Speech in Spanish.
Speech in occasion of the meeting with young people at the sports field of St. Thomas University in Manila The Philippines (18th January 2015)
Music Track: Jesu dulcis memoria

5 – “Non lasciatevi rubare la speranza!” (3:57) – Extract Of Speech in Italian.
Speech to the students of the Jesuit schools of Italy and Albania at the Paul VI Audience Hall – Vatican City (7th June 2013)
Music Track: Christe Redemptor Omnium

6 – “La Iglesia no puede ser una ONG!” (4:49) – Extract Of Speech in Spanish.
Meeting with young people from Argentina at the Cathedral of St. Sebastian in Rio De Janeiro – Brazil (25th July 2013)
Music Track: Ubi Carita et Amor, Deus ibi est

7 – “Wake up! Go! Go! Forward!” (5:12) – Extract Of Speech in English.
Homily during the closing Mass for the VI Asian Youth Day at the Haemi Castle – South Korea (17th August 2014)
Music Track: Ego sum Resurrectio et Vitam

8 – “La fe es entera, no se licua!” (4:32) – Extract Of Speech in Spanish.
Speech on the occasion of the meeting with young people from Argentina at the Cathedral of St. Sebastian in Rio De Janeiro – Brazil (25th July 2013)
Music Track: Vexilla regis prodeunt

9 – “Pace! Fratelli!” (5:52) – Extract Of Speech in Italian.
Invocation for peace together with Shimon Peres and Mahmoud Abbas at the Vatican Gardens – Vatican City (8th June 2014)
Music Track: Veni Sancte Spiritus

10 – “Santa famiglia di Nazareth” (5:10) – Extract Of Speech in Italian.
Prayer on the occasion of the Family Day on the square of St. Peter’s Basilica – Vatican City (27th October 2013)
Music Track: Santa Famiglia di Nazareth

11 – “Fazei o que Ele vos disser!” (3:31) – Extracts Of Speeches in Portuguese and Italian.
Homily during the Holy Mass in the Basilica of the Shrine of “Our Lady of the Concemption of Aparecida” – Brazil (24th July 2013)
Music Track: Ave Maris Stella.

Hah! You made this far! That means you deserve a bonus. This may or may not have been a close-up photo of His Holiness during one of the masses on his US trip.(Via Tom)

Pope Slayer sacrament - FB_IMG_1443282371659

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 40+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

Alan Cross has 38158 posts and counting. See all posts by Alan Cross

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