You are here

Sparking a Controversy?

I know I'm supposed to find news and write about it on this site, but lately most of the news out there hasn't really interested me.  So in stead, my contribution to the content on this site is going to be in the form of telling you about a conversation I had this week.

I was talking to the youth pastor of our church...wait--a little background for you--my wife and I are involved with the youth group at our church, and something I'm passionate about is sharing this thing called Christian rock and roll with our kids.  Unfortunately, it seems like teens today are just not interested in music at all.  Either that or they are only interested in top 40 or scream-o.  One issue I have in the Central PA area is that the Christian radio selection here sucks.  That's right, I said the 's' word.  The main radio station primarily plays the pop/worship genre, except on Friday nights when they play strange hard rock music that doesn't really appeal to me, either.  Tell me how many teens you know that actually want to listen to worship music?  Or how many that want to listen to extremely heavy music?  Chances are you'll find a few more of the latter but not many of each.

One of the things I try to do is first find good music (as long as they are on a "Christian" label), then I worry about what the band is saying.  Take Hawk Nelson for example.  I really like their music but it isn't really driven by a gospel message or anything.  That's ok because it can be used to introduce a kid to the fact that, hey, not all this religious rock stuff is for losers.  Once I get their attention, I can introduce them to Audio Adrenaline, Day of Fire, Red, and other great music with a more gospel-driven message. 

Back to the conversation with the youth pastor... Basically he was saying that he wants to find bands with a positive message and a heart for ministry first as long as they are decent musically.  His examples somewhat overlap mine, with Day of Fire, Kutless, Newsboys, Audio Adrenaline.  But I don't know many teens that would listen to a heavy dose of Newsboys or Audio A.  It really limits the selection. 

So what do you think?  Is it music before words or words before music?  That's the toughest question, I think, facing bands today.  I'm interested in hearing your responses, so feel free to start a bit of a conversation about this!