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Joe Dorsey knows rock and roll. I don’t mean that stuff you can hear on MTV or VH1. That’s not rock and roll. You’ll get some pop, some hip hop, some R&B, but you don’t get a whole lot of rock anymore.
Nor do I mean that stuff you can hear on your favorite alternative radio stations or that cool indie rock college station in town. I love all that stuff, but that’s not what I’m talking about when I say rock and roll.
Joe Dorsey knows the rock and roll of Chuck Berry, Bob Dylan, The Rolling Stones, The Who, and Cream. Classic rock and roll, back when it was still infused with the soulful sounds of blues, before grunge took over and changed everything.
I’m a huge fan of grunge music and all it’s touched, but there’s just nothing like hearing some good old-fashioned straight-up rock and roll.
And for that, you’ll do good looking toward Joe Dorsey and his new album Rest.
If you’ve been paying attention, you’ll recognize Todd Berger’s name from his work with Enter the Worship Circle on the Village Thrift Circa 2005 album, back from… uh… right around 2005. Together with Ben and Robin Pasley, Ryan Lott, and Doc Harrill, Todd helped create something genuinely new in worship music, which is a rare thing when it happens. Overall, I liked the album. I thought some songs were phenomenal, some were really good, and some just shouldn’t have made the final cut. Like most albums, it was a mix of good and bad, but what it did more than anything was prove that a worship album didn’t have to be Chris Tomlin-influenced worship-rock (which there’s nothing wrong with), redone hymns (also, nothing wrong here), or simple acoustic songs ala Enter the Worship Circle’s normal stuff (again, nothing wrong with that either).
There’s a new Village Thrift album in the works, which should be even better than the first, but while you’re waiting, Todd Berger is about to release his own solo album, And Have Not Love.
I filled in for a friend this past week on his paper routes again, and one night I stuck the MP3 player on repeat with Cory Asbury and Matt Gilman’s new album Holy. To be honest, I didn’t care for Matt Gilman’s style that much, so I didn’t download any of his songs from the album, only Cory’s.
I like to play worship music while driving through the night delivering papers. It helps me stay focused on God, gives me some time with Him amidst the insanity of paper delivery, and keeps me from whining and feeling sorry for myself.
I once listened to Colour Revolt for four hours on the routes, and as much as I love those guys, I’d rather have lines like “Be exalted in our praises, be exalted in our love” get stuck in my head than “We call it mattresses underwater but the gutters are seeping.” Then I’m not just hanging out in the middle of the night listening to good music – I’m actually building myself up.
Or maybe you don’t.
We’ve been doing some of his songs for worship at church, so I just tend to assume that means everyone else is doing his songs too.
But if not, let me introduce you all to Kristian Stanfill, another worship leader to… uh… lead you in worship.
About six months ago, we started doing the song “Jesus Paid It All” by this mysterious guy named Kristian Stanfill during worship at church. It’s a really powerful song, so powerful that it made me think, “Hey, I should get more of this guy’s stuff.”
But then Monday rolled around and I forgot all about him. That is, until I had my “Too Many Free Downloads” crisis with emusic (read about it here and sign up for a similar experience here). It was during that crisis, where I was forced to download a few hundred free MP3s within a few weeks, that I remembered Kristian Stanfill and downloaded his EP Hello.
Way back here, I wrote a post about the Australian-based band the Sons of Korah. They’ve become one of my favorite bands as of late for the creativity and artistry of what they’re doing.
The Sons of Korah take the Psalms and turn them into contemporary music that draws on folk and world music traditions. And they do an excellent job of it. Musically-speaking, the guys are great musicians in their own right, but when it comes to capturing the Psalms in music form, they’re just brilliant.
I’ve heard a lot of Psalms turned into songs, and the Sons of Korah create some of the best. So, if you will, read on for my recent over-email interview with Matt Jacoby, lead singer and guitarist of the group.
I’ve been doing the Worship Wars since way back in mid-February, and I think I’ve gotten tired of it, so this will be my last post in the series, at least for now.
And what better way to end the Worship Wars than with Enter the Worship Circle?
I’m not a huge fan of the primary Enter the Worship Circle series of albums, but I respect Ben and Robin Pasley as musicians and I love their heart to worship. Besides, when it comes to hippy, gypsy acoustic worship music, no one does it better than the original Worship Circle crew.
A friend of mine introduced me to the Australia-based Sons of Korah about a year ago.
With an alt-folk sound influenced by world beats, the Sons of Korah are Matt Jacoby (lead vocals, guitar), Jayden Lee (resonator, mandolin, nylon guitar, glissentar, harmony vocals and some lead vocals), Mike Avery (bass), and Rod Wilson (percussion and drums). well, that’s who they used to be, but Jayden Lee has left the group to pursue ministry in different areas. Click here for a string quartet piece, Caroline’s Processional, which he composed for his wife.
Welcome back to the Worship Wars! Sorry for missing my usual Friday post. Being in the ministry, last week was crazy. We’ve been remodeling our church building, so we really pushed it the past few days to get things as ready as we could before Easter.
Our plan is to convert the whole church into a coffeehouse / concert venue / bookstore by the beginning of summer. It’s been a lot of work, but it’ll be awesome when it’s done.
But enough of that – on with the Rock N Roll Worship Circus!
Here we are with another post for the Worship Wars!
I’m not gonna be able to do justice to Keith Green with this post. I was up working late last night and accidently slept in this morning, so I’m running late. I’ll have to do a quick little post, when I should do something much bigger and better.
If you don’t know Keith Green, then read up on him here at Wikipedia, but I assume that most of you have heard of him.
In case you were wondering, Keith’s awesome hair is not the only reason I decided to name The Blah Blah after the coffeehouse where Keith Green first began playing music, but it is an important one (see here). Just feel the Bob Ross influence. Mmmm… happy little trees.
I’m finally back from a week off from blogging. As I explained here, part of my inability to blog for a while was busy-ness, part was computer problems, and part was burn-out from blogging every weekday for over half a year.
I’m thinking of taking a break for a couple weeks, once the Worship Wars are over, so I can get back into regular life, but today… let’s look at Red Mountain Church!
Red Mountain Church is a church based in Birmingham, Alabama, that places an emphasis on worship, particularly through hymns reworked to modern music. Read over their website to see their vision for their church and their city. It’s pretty cool stuff.
Anyway, they’ve got a pretty large body of musicians at the church who have collaborated to release five albums of those reworked hymns, and I think you should check them out.