Back in April, right when we rolled into Eastertide, I started a series of MfM posts on Our Lord’s presence in the music of mainstream culture. I called it, unsurprisingly, Jesus Goes Mainstream, remember?
Today, I’m revisiting the idea with five tunes that take to the four points of the compass, or to the Cross. The set starts off with a flashback to 1976 with David Bowie’s song about prayer and rapidly brings you to the present day and age with the four remaining songs having been recorded since the advent of the New Millenium.
David Bowie, Word On A Wing. I’ll start this off with one of those “songs I never heard.” When I first did the pop version of Jesus Goes Mainstream, a reader wondered how this song missed the line up. That’s easy. I never knew it existed, did you? This is from the album Station to Station,
Lenny Kravitz, Stillness of Heart. On my commute to work this morning, I heard this song playing on the independent radio station in my area. Lenny released this in 2002 and it climbed to #18 on the U.S. Pop charts, and #38 on the Alternative Rock chart. What? You think Lenny is singing about the heart of a girl? Listen closer.
Mike Farris, Precious Lord, Take My Hand. How about some newer stuff? I just heard this one today on the same station that played Lenny Kravitz. Seems a lot of folks like Mike Farris, who looks like Jack White’s twin. He was voted the AMA New/Emerging Artist of the Year in 2008, so of course I’m only now hearing of him. Figures. I’d never heard of the Azkena Rock Festival either, but all the “bigs” have (Sheesh!).
Graham Wilkinson, Focus. I heard this one on my morning drive as well. Maybe it’s just me, but I think Graham has something important to say. The Word, after all, is Love, and that is something to be thankful for. This is the newest song out of this set. Check out Graham’s website too.
The Head and the Heart, Down in the Valley. I’ll end this short set with another prayer song. These folks hail from Seattle, and got together in 2009. Polls are already ranking them one of the best new bands out of that area.This single was released earlier this year. You may have heard about THTH on NPR as well.
Shoot me your requests for newer songs that you think fit into this mold. I’ll whip them up into a Readers Requests version next week. Just shoot me your selections in the combox below.