I am going to write a List.
The Internet loves Lists.
But I feel like this one needs some explanation.
For the Uninitiated:
I work at a church.
Like pretty much every house of worship on the planet,
we use music as part of our devotional experience.
Our church has a wide variety of styles of music used in worship
Sometimes I play drums in the service that sounds like modern top 40 pop/rock radio music
(Or whatever the kids these day would say since “top 40” and “radio” are irrelevant terms)
Before we get to “Listing”
Like most people on the planet who are committed to their faith,
I use music as part of my personal devotional experience.
For a myriad of reasons
(some of which I talked about in older posts like This One….and This One Too )
I put a high value on novelty, in art and life.
I like things that are just a little off-center, quirky stuff.
This is true of the music I use to encourage my faith.
One Last Thing: Some Rules.
N O T A L L O W E D:
1. No Music Designed to be used devotionally
There are bands, labels, genres, industries….all devoted to creating music for use in worship. That’s all well and good, but if it seems like it was designed and marketed to be used in group worship, it won’t make this list.
2. No instrumentals
3. Try to distinguish between Catharsis and Devotion
Just because it elicits an emotional response, doesn’t mean it counts as devotional music.
4. No U2, No Mumford
A L L O W E D:
1. Total disregard for the artist’s intent
2. Music I enjoy, that you may not
#1: Mewithoutyou | C-MinorRunner up: Every Thought a Thought of You Take Away line: "We're not half as bad as God is good"
#2: Pedro the Lion | PromiseRunner up: Secret of the easy Yoke , The Well Take Away Line: "...Is there any reason why I should be scared, when a promise is a promise (I know)"
#3: Trevor Hall | DustRunner Up: The Lime Tree, Green Mountain State Take Away Line: " Who am I, but the dust of the Most High "
#4: Matisyahu | I Will Be LightRunner Up: The entire Matis catalog, Silence, Fire of Freedom Take Away Line: "Oh yoh yo yo yoh yoooh"
#5 Ben Harper | There Will Be a LightRunner Up: So he's backed by a gospel band, still counts. With My Own Two Hands, Blessed to be a Witness Take Away Line: "I've been running, ever since I was a child. Some call it free, some call it wild"
#6. Sufjan Stevens | ChicagoRunner Up: The Transfiguration, All of the Trees of the Forest Will Clap... Take Away Line: "We had our minds set...you had to find it"
#7. Mineral |The Last Word is RejoiceRunner Up: Waking to Winter, Dolorosa, Sounds Like Sunday, GJS Take Away Line: "Reeeee-Joooiiii-ce"
#8 The Fire Theft | HeavenRunner Up: Oceans Apart Take Away Line: "Heaven, are you really waiting outside the door?"