And now for something completely the same.

Concerning the comments from yesterday’s post, first things first. Crappie fishing = awesome. Joe, yes, let’s do a whole lot of that. Call me.

I think the whole conversation about worship music is totally fascinating because it’s such a point of devision in many churches. I’ve done some reading about it and it really has become kind of a big deal. Bizarre.

When I was a boy we worshiped to whatever was put on our plate and we worshiped every last crumb of it and we liked it. Honestly, we liked it. There was no debate about old or new, Marshall or Fender, hymnal or Crowder, there was only debate over whether or not we could beat the Baptists to the KFC after the Sunday morning service.

Taylor, your question was “What about the youth?” The answer is simple. Nobody cares about the youth. The Bible shows us that God doesn’t love anyone under the age of thirty. That’s why Jesus couldn’t start his ministry until he turned thirty. He also doesn’t love Cubs fans.

You’re right though. I totally agree. What about the youth? The band plays a David Crowder tune so the under 21 crowd can worship their God. Then they play “Old Rugged Cross” so the retirees can worship their God. Then the band plays Jellyfish so Drew can worship his God. Then they play some Toby Keith so we can worship bein’ tough and drivin’ a Ford and then slit our wrists. “Did everyone get their God in? Did we leave anybody out?” That’s why I think that every church should find their own Mustang Sally.

A band can walk into pretty much any bar in North America that hires cover bands and play Mustang Sally and 90% of the people will be either singing along or dancing. Why is it so hard to find worship songs with this same kind of mass appeal?

Taylor, I like modern worship music. I didn’t mean to give anybody the impression that I don’t. I even said “I think it’s a blast to play the new stuff too.” But comparing the best of the old to the best of the new I prefer the old. I prefer The Zombies’ version of pop better than Fountains of Wayne’s version of pop but I love both. Same thing with worship music.

But I’m coming at it with a different perspective than most people. I am hyper-critical of songwriters, especially Christian songwriters because if you’re going to write a song about God it better be real good. I’m also hyper-critical of Rock that doesn’t rock. If you’re going to write a Rock worship song it better rock. That means the guitar player had better turn the chorus, reverb, and delay off. That means no rolls on the hi-hat! That means no DX7 keyboard sounds! That means no “Beacon in the night” lyrics! I could go on.

I am by no means an expert on modern worship music. I would guess that the number of worship CDs in my collection would probably be about zero. I’m basically forming my opinion on the huge catalog of modern tunes my worship band has played. The majority of the songs that are supposed to rock just simply don’t rock. And I don’t even know exactly what it means to rock. I can’t really put it into words but I do know this, Van Halen rocked. AC/DC rocked. Zeppelin rocked. And very few of these songs rock. They’re fun to play but they don’t rock. And that’s kinda OK I guess because if they really rocked then we probably wouldn’t be playing them on Sunday morning.

The great thing about the older worship choruses is that they are exactly what they are. Country/Blues/Gospel/Bluegrass, whatever you want to call it, it is what it claims to be.

I am all for having a kickin’ band playing modern stuff every Sunday as long as it works for that particular congregation. I am convinced that I could put together a rotation of tunes that would keep most of the people happy most of the time but is it really about that anyway? It’s not entertainment, right? Is it? That’s a completely different can of worship worms that I’ll open tomorrow, maybe.

Check this video out. This is Ruff Taff singing “Ain’t No Grave”. This isn’t exactly a worship chorus but stylistically it’s pretty close to style that I really like. Russ Taff is one of my top three or four favorite singers but he’s about fifteen years past his prime in this clip. Still awesome though.