Should I go out and buy Garage Hymnal's new CD?
Saturday, September 15, 2007
Catchy title for a CD review?
The answer is... probably. For an in depth review of the CD click here. I bought it this week but haven't listened to it heaps yet.
But I thought it would be helpful to encourage you with something that I'm fairly passionate about. Garage Hymnal write great tunes. Their lyrics are theologically rich and yet easily accessible for youth. I have heard lots of people say that the great thing about Garage Hymnal is that now we have young people writing cool songs that our youth can sing if we don't sing Hillsong (for whatever reason).
The reason this annoys me is that it sees the world in two columns. Many people rely heavily on EMU music (the label GH are signed with) for the songs they do in church, in much the same way as others rely heavily on Hillsong tunes.
So you can end up being a 'Hillsong' church or a 'EMU' church. This can be really unhelpful for a few reasons but one main one is that you stop thinking creatively. In fact you will stop thinking at all. You will end up teaching whatever new hit comes out of your favorite source and you will stop thinking about what is the best song for the congregation you minister to or what the lyrics you are singing are going to be teaching your congregation.
At our church and Youth group we don't sing much EMU or Hillsong. Lots of people would love us to sing more of one or the other but I have opted to look overseas to get songs, or create them ourselves.
Going overseas for songs makes it harder for you to find good music, but it pays off in our context. When people from either camp come to our church they don't feel as if we have chosen a side, rather we are different altogether. That is helpful for first impressions.
All of this being said, I thoroughly support what EMU are trying to do in making songs for churches that are theologically rich and contemporary but I think they have a way to go yet. I also love the music that Hillsong put out, while I have strong reservations about the teaching at Hillsong church itself.
My passion is to see churches writing their own songs out of their own context and to stop just regurgitating everything they are fed.
Meanwhile buy the Garage Hymnal CD. It's pretty cool and it may be an encouragement to you and a creative boost to help you write some of your own tunes.
Posted byDan at 7:05 AM