State of Play #005 "Unappealing and Nothing New" (Part 2) by Andrew Funderburk on 2015-03-06 10:44:54
Last week the basic question was asked, “Why does there appear to be a creativity gap between Christian and mainstream music?” There were several questions that I listed that have not only been asked by myself, but they are also questions that have come from others directed towards me.
There are two questions I would like to address in this follow-up to last week’s article. These questions are as follows: “Why does Christian music [specifically] on Christian radio all sound the same?” and “Why does there appear to be a creativity gap between Christian music and mainstream music?”
Both of these questions can be paired together for this, because from my perspective the creativity gap and Christian music sounding the same, in my mind, both come down to the same thing. What I’m about to say does come from my perspective, and I would like to add to that, my perspective is limited.
When I listen to mainstream radio, unless it’s a genre-specific station, I hear a lot of different musical sounds.
Some songs are combinations of different genres. I hear a variety of topics expressed in different ways. Break-ups. Sex. Money. Love. Dealing with heartache.
Due to the fact that there are multiple genres played, along with multiple messages, mainstream music does have a greater reach. In listening to Christian radio, I hear contemporary pop music. The message I hear is about God, how great He is, our identity in Him, etc. In no way do I discount the messages that are being sung, but there are only a select group of people who will listen to contemporary pop for extended periods of time.
I think it would also be safe to say that there is an almost even smaller percentage in the world who would take the time to listen to the message that Christian music has. That is the trailhead of why Christian radio almost all sounds the same. They have a very limited audience with a much more limited radio reach.
Despite Christian music being about God, this is the job of those who sing, write, and perform. The way they make money is through their music. Drawing that into the greater picture, we have to realize that Christian artists will more than likely mold their sound to what will help them sell their music. Summed up in one sentence, Christian artists sound the same, due to the limited audience that they know will buy what they release.
Should Christians be honing in on just one group of people within their musical reach? How can Christians experiment more with their music? I know of some who are, but I don’t know if I can answer those questions fully; however, it does start with those in the industry who can bring answers, as well as, moving beyond safe borders to truly use the gifts that God has given them.
Slightly Obsessed #197: Are We Spiritual Darwinists?
Two secular scientists recently stumbled upon evidence challenging their evolutionary assumptions. Do we subconsciously doubt God's power and quietly live a similar Darwinian existence? Are we ready to be challenged to believe in His power to intervene in our lives?
Slightly Obsessed #229: When Pain Is a Good Thing
The pain takes us down and drives us to our knees. We long for relief, for a way out. But in the secret place of suffering, we discover that pain is our friend.
Slightly Obsessed #228: The God of the Grateful
My world had just fallen into a pit. We had a young daughter, four other children, and no insurance. I was so sick that I didn’t even know if I could get to the doctor for tests. Despair rolled over us in waves.
Then God spoke.
Slightly Obsessed #227: Release the Beautiful
As we smiled at the people we met on our walk I wondered at the social custom that requires face-to-face congeniality on a bike path among strangers who would soon be in our respective cars fighting over a lane change. It’s easier to be mad at people when we can’t see their faces.
Slightly Obsessed #226: Triune
In its most basic element, our very existence mirrors His Godhead in trinity. Each person enters time and space as three: body, soul, and spirit.
Slightly Obsessed #225: Why Lightning Doesn't Strike the Wicked
The popular radio host was on a rampage, vehemently damning God. He crowned the diatribe by flinging a challenge at God to strike him down at that very moment. He smugly interpreted heaven's silence as proof that there is no God. But what was really happening?