March 19, 2018

My Five Albums

Don Mann was laid to rest this week in Ohio. Don was my brother-in-law’s brother-in-law. He fought the cancer than claimed a lung, then his voice, as fiercely and bravely as anyone I have known. While he was not a blood relative, Don was a good friend, one I was privileged to know for nearly […]

A Simple Man with a Song

George Beverly Shea, the gospel singer best known for singing on Moody Radio and at Billy Graham’s crusades, died yesterday at the age of 104. You can read the full obituary and tributes HERE. Here is the simple song that became his testimony of faith. Rest well in Jesus, Bev.  

Put the Top Down and Put This On

Spring arrived in full glory in Indianapolis today. The long drive home from church required an appropriate soundtrack. What better than one of the greatest albums of all time? It’s all sunshine and great grooves. It will come back to you.

Holy Week: Music of the Cross on Good Friday

I have the privilege of serving in a fine congregation in Indianapolis this spring as part of my ordination process. This church is filled with gifted musicians and the entire congregation has bought into the ethos of praising God through excellent music. For Good Friday, I will be joining the choir to sing “Die Sieben […]

Open Mic: Losing Our Religion (2)

Yesterday, we began a few days of discussing the recent stories on NPR’s Morning Edition in the series, “Losing Our Religion.” Our first conversation was about the overall trend of a growing disconnect between younger people and religion in the U.S. More and more of them are identifying themselves as “Nones” — when asked to state […]

Open Mic: Losing Our Religion (1)

NPR’s Morning Edition did a series last week called “Losing Our Religion.” I encourage you to click the link and listen to the six pieces. The first is an overview of the phenomenon portrayed in the chart above: the growth of the “nones” — the religiously unaffiliated. This trend has been observed especially among younger people. Two […]

Ten Songs that Moved Me in 2012

I did not do a “Best Albums” list for 2012 this year. 2012 was not a banner year for me with regard to listening to music, for several reasons: Limited funds, Limited time to explore and listen to new music, See point #1. In addition, there was only one record I was eagerly looking forward […]

Return to Sister Winter

Tinsel and Lights by Tracey Thorn Merge Records (2012) You loved it as a kid And now you need it more than you ever did It’s because of the dark You see the beauty in the spark That’s why, that’s why The carols make you cry Joy, joy… Sentimentalism, in my view, is the enemy […]

Review: Hymns for the Christian Life

Hymns for the Christian Life by Keith and Kristyn Getty * * * Respected modern singer/songwriters and hymn composers Keith and Kristyn Getty have released another fine album of serious contemporary music in their characteristic Celtic style (along with some bluegrass tunes) for the church. It’s called “Hymns for the Christian Life,” and it deals […]

In Music, 50 Years Ago

Fifty years ago yesterday, a door to the future was opened. The Beatles’ song, “Love Me Do,” which became their first #1 single, was released. It ain’t church music, but no western popular music has been the same since the Beatles.