Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Do We Want Depth, Or Shallow Hugs

I started this by scripting out ways Christian music could be better, but it came across pompous and arrogant ... not my intention. BUT, in typing, I felt this needed to be said at least.

In the last few years, there has been a trend in Christian music/song-writing, a cuddly trend ... a "this is a boyfriend/God" song ... kinda trend. An "I'm only going to graze the idea of an emotion" kinda trend.

Not that those songs aren't good songs ... but some sing as if they were the cutest love song of a boy and girl, that playful, flirtatious beginning of a relationship ... then like that bad aftertaste of something sweet ... they throw the word "Lord" or "God" or "Jesus" in there, just to add another JPM (Jesus Per Minute) point ... It's ok to be a Christian/Singer/Song-writer and have a love song about the opposite sex ... truly ... actually I wish there were more.

On the flip side of the coin ...

I was driving to the gym 2 days ago and heard Mat Kearney's song "Down" come on the radio ... "He lit a cigarette felt in on his lip, Driving home on a long road with regret" sang vulnerably through my car speakers. 2 thoughts went through my head 1. GREAT story-telling ... like a painter with words. 2. It will never get the respect it deserves as a song, it should, it's catchy, great musically-lyrically, but because it has the phrase "He lit a cigarette" in it.

I can hear the Christian Culture ... "Why does he have to smoke, that just ruined the story"

In all honesty, I wish the lyric was "He smoked a PACK of cigarettes" ... Kearney is attempting to paint a story of an angst ridden, soon-to-be father ... what would you rather him use? "He chewed his fingernails?" "He paced back and forth?" ... I don't think those lines paint the angst you can feel in the song.

If you find yourself uncomfortable with a song that positions it's character smoking a cigarette, while he ponders the weight of becoming a father in the world ... yet not see the Gospels promise as the chorus screams " WE ALL NEED FORGIVENESS" ... you might not want music at all ... but an audible "gee ... you're swell"

I would love it, if Christian music were bold enough to sing about doubts, mistakes,  wanting to dance (either romantically or on "da dance flow", real-life "I'm on the verge of being a Christian" kind of songs ... the modern version of Paul's use of pagan poetry on the Mount. I want nothing more than to see an emboldened Christian Culture reaching out, with a Christian perspective/world view, into the areas of sex, drugs, rock & roll, adultery, slander, doubt, remorse, dancing, clubbing, ect. Christian music didn't accept Christ as it's Lord and Savior. As far as I know Christian music was never in Sin and needed a Savior ... Christian music doesn't need to worry about the doctrine of total depravity or the perseverance of the saints ... it's music.

Or maybe you're ok with the "God is my boyfriend" songs ... maybe you're ok with the sideways shallow hugs ...

Until Next Time,

P.S. Enjoy the song

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