Secular pop is no better than CCM

My student Nathan Martin writes about some Christians who have made it big in the secular music world. But it doesn’t matter. They are still bad! So vacuous is their music, he writes, striking two with one blow, they might as well become CCM artists. The pop music scene in general is full of posing and convention at the expense of substance. Read Nathan’s critique and his call for Christians especially to do better. If you know of exceptions, either in the pop or the CCM realm, I’d like to hear of them.

About Gene Veith

Professor of Literature at Patrick Henry College, the Director of the Cranach Institute at Concordia Theological Seminary, a columnist for World Magazine and TableTalk, and the author of 18 books on different facets of Christianity & Culture.

  • Steve Rowe

    Here is a quick very incomplete list of fabulous Christian popular musicians. (In no peculiar order)

    U2, Alison Krauss, The Blind Boys of Alabama, T-Bone Burnett, Mandy Prior, Sam Philips, Bob Dylan (at least from 1979 to 81, Mindy Smith, Bruce Cockburn, Sufjan Stevens, and Stuart Lee Murdoch the lead singer and main songwriter for the Scottish chamber pop band Belle & Sebastian.

  • Steve Rowe

    Here is a quick very incomplete list of fabulous Christian popular musicians. (In no peculiar order)

    U2, Alison Krauss, The Blind Boys of Alabama, T-Bone Burnett, Mandy Prior, Sam Philips, Bob Dylan (at least from 1979 to 81, Mindy Smith, Bruce Cockburn, Sufjan Stevens, and Stuart Lee Murdoch the lead singer and main songwriter for the Scottish chamber pop band Belle & Sebastian.

  • http://heresyhunter.blogspot.com Bob Hunter

    Bruce Cockburn? I’d *like* to believe that he’s a Christian, but the only church affiliation I’ve seen him connected to is the Unitarian Universalist church via the Unitarian Service Committee. He also discusses his beliefs briefly at http://www.things.org/music/bruce_cockburn/articles/third_way.html. Do you know more about his beliefs? Thanks!

  • http://heresyhunter.blogspot.com Bob Hunter

    Bruce Cockburn? I’d *like* to believe that he’s a Christian, but the only church affiliation I’ve seen him connected to is the Unitarian Universalist church via the Unitarian Service Committee. He also discusses his beliefs briefly at http://www.things.org/music/bruce_cockburn/articles/third_way.html. Do you know more about his beliefs? Thanks!

  • Joe Mama

    I am always uncomfortable with blanket statements like those made in the article. Just because the record companies are grabbing any sound-alike band and teaching them how to act like everyone’s favorite band doesn’t mean that all rock bands today are pre-packaged copycats with nothing to say. There has always been a small group of artists who are the real deal and a myriad of pretenders trying to ride their coat tails, and that goes for Christian and secular music.

    And the missing information in the article is that the Jonas Brothers are a Disney product, just like all the other bubble-gum teenie-boppers. They sing what Disney tells them to.

    That said, I agree with his fundamental point; Christians are called to excellence and CCM is saturated with mediocrity. Just don’t overlook the real artists hidden within.

  • Joe Mama

    I am always uncomfortable with blanket statements like those made in the article. Just because the record companies are grabbing any sound-alike band and teaching them how to act like everyone’s favorite band doesn’t mean that all rock bands today are pre-packaged copycats with nothing to say. There has always been a small group of artists who are the real deal and a myriad of pretenders trying to ride their coat tails, and that goes for Christian and secular music.

    And the missing information in the article is that the Jonas Brothers are a Disney product, just like all the other bubble-gum teenie-boppers. They sing what Disney tells them to.

    That said, I agree with his fundamental point; Christians are called to excellence and CCM is saturated with mediocrity. Just don’t overlook the real artists hidden within.

  • http://heresyhunter.blogspot.com Bob Hunter

    Back in 1998 Steve Camp expressed concern about the content of Christian music and was trying to write biblically based lyrics. I don’t follow his music so I don’t know what it’s like today.

  • http://heresyhunter.blogspot.com Bob Hunter

    Back in 1998 Steve Camp expressed concern about the content of Christian music and was trying to write biblically based lyrics. I don’t follow his music so I don’t know what it’s like today.

  • Ian Macruadh

    One of the few CCM groups that I appreciate would be the Sovereign Grace team. They have some great songwriters (e. g. Bob Kouflin, Mark Altrogge) who not only do pretty well with the music, but their lyrics are absolutely amazing. The recently did an album where they took Puritan Prayers contained in the book Valley of Vision and put them to music–the result was some of the most lyrically rich music I have heard in a long time.

    I have also heard really good things about Leeland, but haven’t heard them much. Is anyone more familiar with them?

  • Ian Macruadh

    One of the few CCM groups that I appreciate would be the Sovereign Grace team. They have some great songwriters (e. g. Bob Kouflin, Mark Altrogge) who not only do pretty well with the music, but their lyrics are absolutely amazing. The recently did an album where they took Puritan Prayers contained in the book Valley of Vision and put them to music–the result was some of the most lyrically rich music I have heard in a long time.

    I have also heard really good things about Leeland, but haven’t heard them much. Is anyone more familiar with them?

  • Steve Rowe

    Re: Bob’s Take on Bruce Cockburn
    Please see J. Richard Middleton & Brian J. Walsh article “Theology at the Rim of a Broken Wheel: Bruce Cockburn and Christian Faith in a Postmodern World http://www.things.org/music/bruce_cockburn/articles/grail.html. I addition I would also like to add Tom Waits who if not already in the kingdom is at least spending a lot of time in the doorway (I understand his wife is a devout Catholic.)

  • Steve Rowe

    Re: Bob’s Take on Bruce Cockburn
    Please see J. Richard Middleton & Brian J. Walsh article “Theology at the Rim of a Broken Wheel: Bruce Cockburn and Christian Faith in a Postmodern World http://www.things.org/music/bruce_cockburn/articles/grail.html. I addition I would also like to add Tom Waits who if not already in the kingdom is at least spending a lot of time in the doorway (I understand his wife is a devout Catholic.)

  • CRB

    Steve,
    Add Jonny Lang, whom I’m going to see and hear in concert next month! Great guitarist/vocalist!

  • CRB

    Steve,
    Add Jonny Lang, whom I’m going to see and hear in concert next month! Great guitarist/vocalist!

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    I think it’s a tad unfair to pick on the Jonas Brothers as such, though there’s no question that the accusations leveled at them in that article are fair — for whatever reason, my wife and I caught the last bit of … shudderCamp Rock on ABC recently, complete with insipid bumpers by the Jonas Brothers and a music video of theirs, which I’d describe as “disposable”. But then, the Beatles were once (to my ears) insipid as well. Some sugary pop groups grow up. Most don’t.

    I’ve recommended Sufjan Stevens and Danielson on this blog before, in a similar context. Both make music that is inventive and often beautiful (though more people would use the latter term to describe Sufjan’s work, I dare say), while also having lyrics that are at least inspired by faith. Anathallo is a band in a similar vein, though sometimes I can’t shake the feeling they’re trying too hard.

    In the secular realm, my hometown favorites, Menomena, seem much more inventive than your average indie rock band (to say nothing of their amazing album packaging). Their lyrics are of interest, reflecting the somewhat post-Christian nature of the band’s members.

    For sheer inventiveness these days, the world of hip-hop is hard to beat — many artists, though widely popular, do some rather avant-garde things, musically. Dizzee Rascal, Missy Elliot, Timbaland productions … all have, at one point, blown me away. Wish I could similarly endorse their lyrical content, but I can’t.

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    I think it’s a tad unfair to pick on the Jonas Brothers as such, though there’s no question that the accusations leveled at them in that article are fair — for whatever reason, my wife and I caught the last bit of … shudderCamp Rock on ABC recently, complete with insipid bumpers by the Jonas Brothers and a music video of theirs, which I’d describe as “disposable”. But then, the Beatles were once (to my ears) insipid as well. Some sugary pop groups grow up. Most don’t.

    I’ve recommended Sufjan Stevens and Danielson on this blog before, in a similar context. Both make music that is inventive and often beautiful (though more people would use the latter term to describe Sufjan’s work, I dare say), while also having lyrics that are at least inspired by faith. Anathallo is a band in a similar vein, though sometimes I can’t shake the feeling they’re trying too hard.

    In the secular realm, my hometown favorites, Menomena, seem much more inventive than your average indie rock band (to say nothing of their amazing album packaging). Their lyrics are of interest, reflecting the somewhat post-Christian nature of the band’s members.

    For sheer inventiveness these days, the world of hip-hop is hard to beat — many artists, though widely popular, do some rather avant-garde things, musically. Dizzee Rascal, Missy Elliot, Timbaland productions … all have, at one point, blown me away. Wish I could similarly endorse their lyrical content, but I can’t.

  • http://www.patrolmag.com Nathan

    I left a response that articulates some of my other thoughts on the position,

    i´m not a complete hater, there´s a lot of good music in the world, you´ve just gotta work pretty hard to find it.

    One explicitly christian band that I´ve loved for a long time is Jars of Clay. I have an intense level of respect for these guys ability.

    t0DD I´d concur with your recommendation of Sufjan. I´ve seen him twice and spent far too much money, time and discomfort, but each time that I sat down in the sold-out auditorium, I experienced something that can only be described as beautiful.

    Danielson Familye is a little bit harder to get into, but they can be a lot of fun.

    Menomena comes highly recommended from a number of people, and I´ve been meaning to check them out.

    I´ll give you one band that I would insist everyone listen to, that´s making great music right now.

    Delta Spirit.
    http://www.myspace.com/deltaspirit

    they´re one of my favorite bands right now, and they´ve got a ridiculous amount of talent.

    they were just signed to Rounder Records (with Alison Krauss etc) so, you should hear more from them soon.

    thanks again dr.v.

  • http://www.patrolmag.com Nathan

    I left a response that articulates some of my other thoughts on the position,

    i´m not a complete hater, there´s a lot of good music in the world, you´ve just gotta work pretty hard to find it.

    One explicitly christian band that I´ve loved for a long time is Jars of Clay. I have an intense level of respect for these guys ability.

    t0DD I´d concur with your recommendation of Sufjan. I´ve seen him twice and spent far too much money, time and discomfort, but each time that I sat down in the sold-out auditorium, I experienced something that can only be described as beautiful.

    Danielson Familye is a little bit harder to get into, but they can be a lot of fun.

    Menomena comes highly recommended from a number of people, and I´ve been meaning to check them out.

    I´ll give you one band that I would insist everyone listen to, that´s making great music right now.

    Delta Spirit.
    http://www.myspace.com/deltaspirit

    they´re one of my favorite bands right now, and they´ve got a ridiculous amount of talent.

    they were just signed to Rounder Records (with Alison Krauss etc) so, you should hear more from them soon.

    thanks again dr.v.

  • http://gpiper.org/katiesbeer TKls2myhrt

    I didn’t leave a comment at Patrol because I have an outdated habit of capitalization and I didn’t want to out myself as an elderly citizen of 47 years. Either that would out me or the fact that I really don’t know who the Jonas Brothers are except that I hear their name mentioned on TV now and then. Do they have a famous song I’d recognize?

    I realize that things are different from when I was growing up but am I to believe that there are so very few Christians who have made a name for themselves in “secular” music that we have to call out their names as if we discovered gold? Surely Christians work in all areas of our culture, including thousands in music. Who, on my iPod, is a Christian and who isn’t? How would I know? Sometimes the lyrics tell me or an album cover tells me, but often there is no “clue”. I choose music that tells me a story or speaks to my heart. That person may or may not have faith in Jesus Christ (yet), but all good gifts come from God.

    Here a quick review of artists on my iPod who are either openly Christian or sing songs that remind me of some aspect of Christian faith:

    Jeff Buckley – Hallelujah is a must-hear

    Chris Whitely – Hard Time Living with the Law is particularly poignant to me – we all have a hard time living with the law.

    Coldplay – sorry Nathan, but I hear strong Christian themes

    Elvis Costello

    Fernando Ortega – avoided CCM, strong Baptist, but ultimately the best in his craft of acoustic music and guitar. Sometimes sings “Christian” songs, sometimes just plain songs that tell a great story

    Five for Fighting – his version of Silent Night is beautiful

    Foo Fighters – My Hero is a touching song of looking up to an ordinary man

    Jonny Reznick (Goo Goo Dolls)

    Hanson – great example of Christians who tried pop music route and found their best happiness and integrity by remaining independents

    Kansas

    Sara Evans – Christian artist, not CCM

    Sixpence None the Richer

    U2

  • http://gpiper.org/katiesbeer TKls2myhrt

    I didn’t leave a comment at Patrol because I have an outdated habit of capitalization and I didn’t want to out myself as an elderly citizen of 47 years. Either that would out me or the fact that I really don’t know who the Jonas Brothers are except that I hear their name mentioned on TV now and then. Do they have a famous song I’d recognize?

    I realize that things are different from when I was growing up but am I to believe that there are so very few Christians who have made a name for themselves in “secular” music that we have to call out their names as if we discovered gold? Surely Christians work in all areas of our culture, including thousands in music. Who, on my iPod, is a Christian and who isn’t? How would I know? Sometimes the lyrics tell me or an album cover tells me, but often there is no “clue”. I choose music that tells me a story or speaks to my heart. That person may or may not have faith in Jesus Christ (yet), but all good gifts come from God.

    Here a quick review of artists on my iPod who are either openly Christian or sing songs that remind me of some aspect of Christian faith:

    Jeff Buckley – Hallelujah is a must-hear

    Chris Whitely – Hard Time Living with the Law is particularly poignant to me – we all have a hard time living with the law.

    Coldplay – sorry Nathan, but I hear strong Christian themes

    Elvis Costello

    Fernando Ortega – avoided CCM, strong Baptist, but ultimately the best in his craft of acoustic music and guitar. Sometimes sings “Christian” songs, sometimes just plain songs that tell a great story

    Five for Fighting – his version of Silent Night is beautiful

    Foo Fighters – My Hero is a touching song of looking up to an ordinary man

    Jonny Reznick (Goo Goo Dolls)

    Hanson – great example of Christians who tried pop music route and found their best happiness and integrity by remaining independents

    Kansas

    Sara Evans – Christian artist, not CCM

    Sixpence None the Richer

    U2

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    TK (@10), though it uses biblical imagery, I don’t think “Hallelujah” (originally a Leonard Cohen song) is Christian at all (note the line “maybe there’s a God above”). I’m not sure I could say for certain what the song was about in Cohen’s mind (he had several versions), but Buckley was once quoted as saying his version is rather about sex.

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    TK (@10), though it uses biblical imagery, I don’t think “Hallelujah” (originally a Leonard Cohen song) is Christian at all (note the line “maybe there’s a God above”). I’m not sure I could say for certain what the song was about in Cohen’s mind (he had several versions), but Buckley was once quoted as saying his version is rather about sex.

  • CRB

    #10 Why Kansas and Reznick, are they Christians?

  • CRB

    #10 Why Kansas and Reznick, are they Christians?

  • Pete

    One word: Bob Dylan

  • Pete

    One word: Bob Dylan

  • http://gpiper.org/katiesbeer TKls2myhrt

    CRB, that’s my point! How in the world would we know?

    John Reznick – baptized, raised and educated a Catholic. Had pretty tough teenage years, but today writes pretty clean songs with excellent technique and sound and with good meaning.

    Lyrics to Better Days(about Christmas Eve)-
    And you ask me what I want this year
    And I try to make this kind and clear
    Just a chance that maybe we’ll find better days
    Cuz I don’t need boxes wrapped in strings
    And designer love and empty things
    Just a chance that maybe we’ll find better days
    So take these words
    And sing out loud
    Cuz everyone is forgiven now
    Cuz tonight’s the night the world begins again
    And it’s someplace simple where we could live
    And something only you can give
    And thats faith and trust and peace while we’re alive
    And the one poor child that saved this world
    And there’s 10 million more who probably could
    If we all just stopped and said a prayer for them

    Kansas – Actually, for those of the 70′s it is well-known that several Kansas members were Christians.

    From Wikipedia (and my memory): Kansas’ band members began to drift apart in the early 1980s. Kerry Livgren became a born-again Christian, and this was reflected in his lyrics on the next three albums, beginning with Audio-Visions (#26), and especially on the top 40 single (“Hold On”) released from that album. Dave Hope soon converted to Christianity as well. Walsh left to form a new band, Streets. Walsh was replaced by vocalist John Elefante, also a born-again Christian, who along with his brother Dino, later became known for producing albums for Christian rock bands including Sweet Comfort Band, Petra, Bride, Rick Cua, and Guardian.

    Kansas’ first album with Elefante, Vinyl Confessions (#16), released in 1982, was their most successful studio release since Point of Know Return. The record renewed interest in the group and generated the band’s first top twenty hit in several years with “Play the Game Tonight” (#17). The album’s overtly Christian lyrics attracted an entirely new audience of evangelical Christians, who used lyrics from the record in religious tracts handed out after Kansas concerts. However, sales of the album fell just shy of gold status, and to this day the album has not been certified gold, unlike all of the band’s prior releases.

  • http://gpiper.org/katiesbeer TKls2myhrt

    CRB, that’s my point! How in the world would we know?

    John Reznick – baptized, raised and educated a Catholic. Had pretty tough teenage years, but today writes pretty clean songs with excellent technique and sound and with good meaning.

    Lyrics to Better Days(about Christmas Eve)-
    And you ask me what I want this year
    And I try to make this kind and clear
    Just a chance that maybe we’ll find better days
    Cuz I don’t need boxes wrapped in strings
    And designer love and empty things
    Just a chance that maybe we’ll find better days
    So take these words
    And sing out loud
    Cuz everyone is forgiven now
    Cuz tonight’s the night the world begins again
    And it’s someplace simple where we could live
    And something only you can give
    And thats faith and trust and peace while we’re alive
    And the one poor child that saved this world
    And there’s 10 million more who probably could
    If we all just stopped and said a prayer for them

    Kansas – Actually, for those of the 70′s it is well-known that several Kansas members were Christians.

    From Wikipedia (and my memory): Kansas’ band members began to drift apart in the early 1980s. Kerry Livgren became a born-again Christian, and this was reflected in his lyrics on the next three albums, beginning with Audio-Visions (#26), and especially on the top 40 single (“Hold On”) released from that album. Dave Hope soon converted to Christianity as well. Walsh left to form a new band, Streets. Walsh was replaced by vocalist John Elefante, also a born-again Christian, who along with his brother Dino, later became known for producing albums for Christian rock bands including Sweet Comfort Band, Petra, Bride, Rick Cua, and Guardian.

    Kansas’ first album with Elefante, Vinyl Confessions (#16), released in 1982, was their most successful studio release since Point of Know Return. The record renewed interest in the group and generated the band’s first top twenty hit in several years with “Play the Game Tonight” (#17). The album’s overtly Christian lyrics attracted an entirely new audience of evangelical Christians, who used lyrics from the record in religious tracts handed out after Kansas concerts. However, sales of the album fell just shy of gold status, and to this day the album has not been certified gold, unlike all of the band’s prior releases.

  • CRB

    Yeh, Reznick is from my hometown of Buffalo, NY

    I used to have that Kansas album, “Leftoverture” which was a great album, although at the time I didn’t really
    understand what the lyrics were about, except ‘Carry On…”

    Thanks for all the info on these groups!

  • CRB

    Yeh, Reznick is from my hometown of Buffalo, NY

    I used to have that Kansas album, “Leftoverture” which was a great album, although at the time I didn’t really
    understand what the lyrics were about, except ‘Carry On…”

    Thanks for all the info on these groups!

  • http://gpiper.org/katiesbeer TKls2myhrt

    tODD, I stand corrected…sort of. Although I knew the song wasn’t solely biblical, I hadn’t really heard all the lyrics. After finding the lyrics online, I’ll amend my statement…though I still think that the song makes good Biblical references. Some of the verses are very sexual, though. If I am understanding the lyrics correctly (there are actually many verses), Hallelujah is a song of less-than-good love which uses a comparison of godly love to make a point. I think that is worthwhile.

  • http://gpiper.org/katiesbeer TKls2myhrt

    tODD, I stand corrected…sort of. Although I knew the song wasn’t solely biblical, I hadn’t really heard all the lyrics. After finding the lyrics online, I’ll amend my statement…though I still think that the song makes good Biblical references. Some of the verses are very sexual, though. If I am understanding the lyrics correctly (there are actually many verses), Hallelujah is a song of less-than-good love which uses a comparison of godly love to make a point. I think that is worthwhile.

  • JLC

    From the progressive rock world, I highly recommend Neal Morse. His last album, Sola Scriptura, was a tribute (rock opera) to Martin Luther.

  • JLC

    From the progressive rock world, I highly recommend Neal Morse. His last album, Sola Scriptura, was a tribute (rock opera) to Martin Luther.

  • Reg Schofield

    Just so you know JLC , Neil Morse denies the trinity and as far as I can tell , he embraces a form of modalism. In other words he is a heretic . Just because it speaks Christian speak doesn’t mean its the real article. Plus I tired of all the constant knocks against CCM as being second rate music and the great secular field as being so much better. Coldplay sound like they are writing the same song over and over , the love affair with the Beatles is laughable and U2 are one of the most annoying and overrated bands of all time . Granted in CCM there is a a lot of less than stellar artist but there are those who do rise above the rest . Just as in secular music . In CCM I enjoy Jars of Clay , Steven Curtis Chapman,Mercy Me , Third Day and Switchfoot. But the bottom line in music , its like art , completely subjective to the taste of the individual . I love all types of music but I know what I like and what I don’t , to someone else U2 , the Beatles etc..are wonderful but to me I would rather hear a chainsaw. Thats my 2 cents worth .

  • Reg Schofield

    Just so you know JLC , Neil Morse denies the trinity and as far as I can tell , he embraces a form of modalism. In other words he is a heretic . Just because it speaks Christian speak doesn’t mean its the real article. Plus I tired of all the constant knocks against CCM as being second rate music and the great secular field as being so much better. Coldplay sound like they are writing the same song over and over , the love affair with the Beatles is laughable and U2 are one of the most annoying and overrated bands of all time . Granted in CCM there is a a lot of less than stellar artist but there are those who do rise above the rest . Just as in secular music . In CCM I enjoy Jars of Clay , Steven Curtis Chapman,Mercy Me , Third Day and Switchfoot. But the bottom line in music , its like art , completely subjective to the taste of the individual . I love all types of music but I know what I like and what I don’t , to someone else U2 , the Beatles etc..are wonderful but to me I would rather hear a chainsaw. Thats my 2 cents worth .

  • Steve Rowe

    I am 41 years and somewhat out of touch with the contemporary seen (I can’t stand rap for instance) so I may be missing a whole world of quality christen music. However it seems to me that the poor quality of CCM as well as similar poplar and high art is a symptom that there is something very wrong with our culture. Can any on think of a time when the church was healthy and did not produce fruit in the form of the high quality creative art? It is especially damming that the multimillion dollar Christian publishing and recording industry produces at best a half dozen or so works of real art a year (at best).

  • Steve Rowe

    I am 41 years and somewhat out of touch with the contemporary seen (I can’t stand rap for instance) so I may be missing a whole world of quality christen music. However it seems to me that the poor quality of CCM as well as similar poplar and high art is a symptom that there is something very wrong with our culture. Can any on think of a time when the church was healthy and did not produce fruit in the form of the high quality creative art? It is especially damming that the multimillion dollar Christian publishing and recording industry produces at best a half dozen or so works of real art a year (at best).

  • JLC

    Reg,
    Somebody else also mentioned to me that he denies the Trinity. I just went to his website and sure enough it certainly looks like he does. Very disappointing, especially since his last CD was a testimony to Martin Luther. Let’s pray he reads Luther on the Trinity. He is a superb talent. I would also agree with you as it relates to CCM vs. Secular. I just think the Pop genre in general tends to be shallow so I think it sticks out more for criticism in the CCM arena. One last artist I highly recommend is Kerry Livgren (currently the mastermind behind the group ProtoKaw). He is much like Morse without the theological baggage.

  • JLC

    Reg,
    Somebody else also mentioned to me that he denies the Trinity. I just went to his website and sure enough it certainly looks like he does. Very disappointing, especially since his last CD was a testimony to Martin Luther. Let’s pray he reads Luther on the Trinity. He is a superb talent. I would also agree with you as it relates to CCM vs. Secular. I just think the Pop genre in general tends to be shallow so I think it sticks out more for criticism in the CCM arena. One last artist I highly recommend is Kerry Livgren (currently the mastermind behind the group ProtoKaw). He is much like Morse without the theological baggage.

  • Lisa

    If you look past “God of Wonders” Caedmon’s Call has some quality music. See “Thy Mercy”.

  • Lisa

    If you look past “God of Wonders” Caedmon’s Call has some quality music. See “Thy Mercy”.

  • Edward

    @18

    “But the bottom line in music , its like art , completely subjective to the taste of the individual .”

    Reg,
    It seems to me that there is a subjective element to art (I generally prefer Monet to someone else’s Van Gogh), but I think there are some universal objective standards to set apart a great piece of art from a mediocre or even good piece of art. Austen’s place as the mistress of the novel of manners hasn’t been threatened for over a century and a half, even though there have been a passionate flood of romance novels since then.

  • Edward

    @18

    “But the bottom line in music , its like art , completely subjective to the taste of the individual .”

    Reg,
    It seems to me that there is a subjective element to art (I generally prefer Monet to someone else’s Van Gogh), but I think there are some universal objective standards to set apart a great piece of art from a mediocre or even good piece of art. Austen’s place as the mistress of the novel of manners hasn’t been threatened for over a century and a half, even though there have been a passionate flood of romance novels since then.

  • Reg Schofield

    JLC just so you know , I was very dismayed as well because I really enjoyed his stuff , Morse is extremely talented . Edward you are right , there are certain objective standards no question , for example I will give the Beatles marks for lyrics and maturing , they were heads above much of 60′s , but it just doesn’t do it for me . One thing that I guess you have to give is time , generally the best or cream of the crop last, while the others become dust , littering some landfill somewhere.

  • Reg Schofield

    JLC just so you know , I was very dismayed as well because I really enjoyed his stuff , Morse is extremely talented . Edward you are right , there are certain objective standards no question , for example I will give the Beatles marks for lyrics and maturing , they were heads above much of 60′s , but it just doesn’t do it for me . One thing that I guess you have to give is time , generally the best or cream of the crop last, while the others become dust , littering some landfill somewhere.

  • LAJ

    My all-time favorite group all of whom are Lutherans is “The Divers” from Minnesota. They sing fun songs they mostly make up themselves, and also some that distinctly reflect their faith. They have a website if you’re interested.

  • LAJ

    My all-time favorite group all of whom are Lutherans is “The Divers” from Minnesota. They sing fun songs they mostly make up themselves, and also some that distinctly reflect their faith. They have a website if you’re interested.

  • http://gpiper.org/katiesbeer TKls2myhrt

    Thanks for the tip, LAJ! My daughter is most likely headed to Bethany in the fall and it looks like 2 of the four Divers teach at BLC. I’ll check out their 10/2 concert at MLC in New Ulm, MN.

  • http://gpiper.org/katiesbeer TKls2myhrt

    Thanks for the tip, LAJ! My daughter is most likely headed to Bethany in the fall and it looks like 2 of the four Divers teach at BLC. I’ll check out their 10/2 concert at MLC in New Ulm, MN.

  • LAJ

    Cool! Thanks for writing.

  • LAJ

    Cool! Thanks for writing.


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