My Father-in-law wrote a song to enter for a Christian songwriting competition. He asked me to help; I asked Ardour to help.
He played acoustic guitars and sang. Then he left it to me to add the other instruments, mix, and master the tracks. There is a soft version and an upbeat version.
For the soft one, I let the arrangement stay pretty sparse, adding fretless bass, shaker, djembe, and a short cello synth line (rosegarden with fluidsynth dssi). I recorded the guitar with a Mid-Side setup (AKG 451 as mid, AKG 414 as side) pointed at the 12th fret. The M-S matrix plugin and a high-pass filter were almost the only thing used. I did have to use a notch filter to fix some extra noises (explained here)
For the upbeat version, I used my Line 6 POD X3 quite a bit with 4 electric guitar parts (open, capo 2, and two capo 7), plus the bass (fretted fender j). For the drums I recorded MIDI from my edrums (pintech pads with roland td-8) into rosegarden. Then after I cleaned/edited the midi parts, I played the midi back through the roland module and recorded each drum as a separate audio track so that I could tweak each one separately. I used TAP sigmoid booster on the kick and snare, and a lot of single band parameter eqs.
For both versions I used TAP reverberator in a stereo bus and routed sends from each channel into that. I find that you get much more control this way (pan instrument left and reverb right, etc), use less system resources, and get a more cohesive and realistic reverb effect.
I used JAMin to master each one, mostly using the multiband compressor, though I did use the limiter to get more apparent volume from the soft track.
The title of the song is “Christ Reigns”, so it definitely got Christian lyrics.