Media and entertainment have the power to provide perspectives we never thought of. It can change the way we feel, inspire us to create, and take us to world that have never been experienced. It’s easy to see why it’s such a massive influential industry. But with the rise of the internet, The ability to create or experience art has become more accessible. Now, millions of creative minds can share their creative pieces for the rest of the world to appreciate. And you do see people, now and then taking advantage of this vast supply of inspiration and creativity. But I want to focus on a group that I strongly believe SHOULD be doing this… but aren’t Christians. As a Christian myself, I believe that if we believe in an infinite creator who has used creativity to create the cosmos and put that same creativity in us, we should be doing much more. If anybody should be making the most creative pieces in existence, I believe it should be those who believe in a creative being. This will be a two-part video series critiquing Christian media. In this episode, I will be discussing the problems in Christian music. Now if you like the music that I critique in this video, more power to you. You enjoy something that I can’t. I’m just sharing my opinion to provide a different perspective that you might not have thought of originally. Or, for me, I might find others that share the same view and share the same view and know that I am not alone in this perspective. When look at Christian music, I don’t see a ministry… …I see an industry. I don’t see creativity… …I see conformity. I find it interesting that every song sounds like the last. The same beat. The same song. The same message. It’s all mass-produced. In the same way secular pop music makes the most generic, repetitive songs we played on the radio, Christian bands pump out the same type of generic music, only with a Christian twist to be played on Christian Radio. And who can blame them? It’s a risk-free guarantee of a consistent supply of hits. But that’s the problem. It’s risk free. Arguably, all the best songs and movies were risks. Bohemian Rhapsody, considered one of the songs ever made, was seen as a risk. The song is so unconventional, the lyrics sound like they were written by a mad man, and it’s very long. Doesn’t sound like it would be a guaranteed hit, hence the risk. Yet, is is recognized as a masterpiece of rock music. Christian radio and record labels don’t only fear risk because of the possibility of losing ratings, but also because of the controversial lyrics. I and many others find the messages of these songs both tame and really weak. Songs are great for kids of 6 to 12 years old, but I find them monotonous and not very relatable for teenagers and adult who face problems much more complicated than the messages these songs are conveying. When Christian artists come on the scene with poetic lyrics on controversial topics, they are practically banned from the club that is the Christian Music Industry. Case in point, Gungor. Gungor is a fantastic band that uses their creativity to paint the relation between man and God and what pulls us closer or farther away from each other. Now, they were huge when they were at the Christian Music Circle with their album “Beautiful Things” And they continued to grow until word got out that they believed God created the universe through the Big Bang theory and evolution. This, of course, rocked the boat. People started sending them death threats and calling them heretics. It was really bad. They believed in the same God, the same Gospel, and the same Jesus. They just believed God created the world in a different way. Now, with an estimation of 2.3 billion Christians on Earth, it is impossible to think that everyone will believe the exact same thing and understand it all in the exact same way. I mean, just look at all the different denominations within Christianity. There’s bound to be others who think differently, and usually, when two people cannot agree, one might get offended. It’s controversial. There’s a great risk in playing music made by people with different views than what we’re used to hearing, and thus causing controversy. Radio labels and record stations don’t want to take risks, and I get it. They don’t want their rating to drop and lose money. They understand taking a step in faith is never risk-free. Another problem is that most Christian music serves as an alternative to mainstream music. You see this primarily in Christian Rap. Now, quick disclaimer: I am not a fan of modern rap such as: So I won’t critique it because I am not qualified to do so. Now, I totally understand that parents don’t want their kids listening to mainstream rappers. But this just ends in unoriginality and laziness. Rap can be a very creative art form and it’s a marriage of poetry and song, and poetry can be about anything. It can be extremely creative. And, there’s also worship music. Here is where we come before God and glorify him with all we have! And I guess all we have are songs that repeat the same line over and over. The songs we use to worship an unpredictable God… …are extremely… …predictable. What happened to when Christian music made you think; when they were controversial; when they were humble? So much, so that they actually started off a song with this: What happened to when Worship music was written straight out of creative minds such as Rich Mullins, who made a song that praised God for just making the color green. If you have never heard of Rich Mullins, I highly recommend that you listen to his music. Absolute poetry. There was nothing between him and singing the songs he wanted to sing. You could see wonder in his eyes. In fact, you could see the wonder in all the artists’ eyes in that time. Then, all the genuineness, wonder, and creativity disappeared. Now, allow me to clear some things up. I grew up with Christian music. I went to a concert for just about every Christian artist today: I grew up a fan of Christian music. I’m not in any way saying that any of these artists are not talented, they are. I absolutely love some of the songs from mainstream Christian artists. But I am saying is that they seem like they’re being suppressed by the factory that is Christian Radio and record labels. Whenever secular radio has a hit song, Christian radio makes a Christian alternative. The messages have devolved into songs about Christian lifestyle that requires no thought process. I find it extremely hard to listen to: after stumbling upon the possibilities of Christian music. Thanks to the Internet and technology, I am finding more and more independent creative followers of Christ, worshiping God with nothing between them. No controlling record label, no safe radio station, and no money hungry industry watering down their messages and melody. It’s worship in the purest sense of the word. Artists like Josh Garrels. John Mark McMillan, Rivers and Robots, and my personal favorite, Benjamin James, are truly writing poetry flowing with creativity and passion, playing unique instruments and singing from the depths of their being, whether that be out of pain, love, or both. I strongly recommend listening to these artists. They have made a huge impact on my life. Why should we settle to listening to recycled repetitiveness, when there’s so much authentic creativity waiting to be made. and heard.