A Traditional Thanksgiving Hymn…about Election?

Today we sang the traditional Thanksgiving hymn "Come, Ye Thankful People, Come" as a part of our worship service.  This hymn sits in the "Dedication and Thanksgiving" section of our hymnal, and I suspect the editors of The Baptist Hymnal did not read past the first line of the hymn.  Stranger still, the Evangelical Lutheran … Continue reading A Traditional Thanksgiving Hymn…about Election?

“Signs and Symbols”|Beautiful Eulogy

Beautiful Eulogy just put out their latest offering Instruments of Mercy (download it at Noisetrade here).  In the middle of the album, the song "Signs and Symbols" is a great reminder that we are to look to the Bible first and foremost for guidance in life.  The song features Propaganda, one of my favorite hip-hop … Continue reading “Signs and Symbols”|Beautiful Eulogy

Seven Over the Rhine Songs So Good, Your Toes’ll Curl

My wife and I hardly ever agree on music taste, but there is one band that we both love and cherish deeply: Over the Rhine.  There is something about husband-and-wife duo Linford Detweiler and Karin Bergquist's sultry, soulful music full of grit, struggle, despair, and hope that has touched our marriage in so many ways.  … Continue reading Seven Over the Rhine Songs So Good, Your Toes’ll Curl

“Whoa!” Is the New “Hallelujah!”

I've heard people riff on "___________ is the new ___________" in many different ways, but today I'm applying it to the positively pragmatic approach of many worship song writers.  You see, they have realized that "Whoa!" is the new "Hallelujah!" Allow me to explain.  For years the word "hallelujah" has been a mainstay of the … Continue reading “Whoa!” Is the New “Hallelujah!”

Bad News: Compared to Deadmau5, Worship is Boring.

The other week, I logged into Spotify, and on the main page they were live streaming the Made in America concert hosted by Jay-Z.  I watched for a few minutes at the bizarre display.  Deadmau5 was performing--a DJ who makes dance/trance music for the mainstream.  As a DJ, the main draw of his performance was … Continue reading Bad News: Compared to Deadmau5, Worship is Boring.

Give Music Back to the People

In Martin Luther's day, no one sang in church.  Correction: no one sitting in the pews sang.  Singing and praising God was restricted to the priests.  Congregational worship is a Reformational concept that we take for granted today, though perhaps not for much longer.  As church worship services become more and more about the mesmerizing light … Continue reading Give Music Back to the People

Why Many Worship Leaders Would Make Lousy Music Critics

When you utter the words "christian" and "music" consecutively, you can mean so many different things.  Do you mean music that is "Christian"?  Do you mean the music that plays on CCM radio stations?  Do you mean music appropriate for worship?  Do you mean music that Christians have on their IPods?  Whatever you mean, a … Continue reading Why Many Worship Leaders Would Make Lousy Music Critics

There’s a Little ‘Yeezus’ in Each of Us

Kanye West just released his highly anticipated album Yeezus this past week, and what more can I say--he's still rapping about money, women, and excess.  However, unlike the tracks on previous albums that dressed this depravity in the bright sounds of the big brass band, the crooning of R&B featured artists, and the throwback of old … Continue reading There’s a Little ‘Yeezus’ in Each of Us

Since When Did Musicians Become “Recording Artists”?

Music has changed drastically in the last hundred years from a communal experience to an intensely private one.  How did this happen?  Why did this happen?  What does it have to do with our music in the church? It all began in 1877 with Edison's invention of the phonograph.  This machine was the push that … Continue reading Since When Did Musicians Become “Recording Artists”?

Is the Church the Place to Party Hard?–Part 3

My sister-in-law dug up a video from my days in college that brought back great memories of a week spent with nine other Christian young men.  Unfortunately for me, the video is mildly incriminating since it contains actual footage of us guys doing the equivalent of a "flash mob" style dance party in different areas … Continue reading Is the Church the Place to Party Hard?–Part 3