Archive for Music

Got No Friends

Posted in Music with tags , , , on August 13, 2012 by Alex

Back in my A-Z post on Gungor, I said that they were one of rare “Christian” groups that were actually good.  Since then,  I’ve found I’m almost tired of them.  I recognize the work behind what they’ve done, but it just doesn’t have the endurance I thought it would.  And I do remember while making that post that their early work was mostly unimpressive.
So enter “The Vespers.”  Here’s what you have to know:

The two gentlemen are brothers and the two ladies are sisters.

The oldest is 22 and the youngest is 19.

They make Americana/bluegrass/folk.

They’re from Nashville.

Some of their songs (such as in the video) are pretty good, if not exceptional.

Each of them are strong believers in Christ.

This isn’t a group of dolled up kids with all sorts of effects to hide their weaknesses, it’s real music.  And I’d ask for nothing less.

Only time will tell with The Vespers.  Hopefully in a week I won’t grow tired, but in the meantime and forever more… God bless each of ’em.

All My Tears

Posted in Music with tags , , , , , , on August 6, 2012 by Alex

One of the men who inspired me to start this blog (Dan Phillips) posts a YouTube music video every Monday and calls this slot in the week “Music Monday.”  Now out of respect I’m not sure I could this sort of post such a thing, but I will happily link you guys something.  Heck, maybe it could be called “Media Monday.”  That way I can link you cartoon clips.  But today it is in fact music.

There are many good renditions, but I like this one in particular because of how rustic and raw it feels. Our path to Heaven begins and carries on through steps of repentance.  Joy is certainly what draws us, but we leave tears in our wake.  Heck, this cover by the Gordons might be so appropriate because of how thankful and mournful it sounds.

It reminds me of…Seattle.
The place I got baptized, the first place I heard this song (albeit another version), and a place I remember God had used me to bless another.  I didn’t see it coming at all.  I didn’t plan any of it.  I hadn’t meditated on the words beforehand.  But I remember walking through a college campus when this young man of maybe 19-20 stopped me and asked for money.

He said his dad had drunkenly barged into his room the previous night and demanded that he leave.  I noticed he had severely inflamed knuckles which I could tell he probably chewed on front time to time.  I guessed he was on drugs.

But God had put some extra food in my backpack and I gave some to him.  He was very appreciative and told me “God bless you.”

I asked him what he meant by that.
“Well…I’m a Christian,” he said caught back unaware.

“What does it mean to you to be a Christian?”

I don’t remember his exact response.  But I do remember walking away from the conversation that he wasn’t able to explain the gospel to me.  I offered to pray over him and gave him a hug.  I exited the hug with the words, “You know, one day he’s going to wipe away all our tears.”

I started walking away and he called back “When’s that happening?”  What I found so peculiar was his face.  It was very red and he had tears gushing down his face.

I raised a finger into the air and said, “In the end!”

These things don’t happen often. For some of us, never.  But I know that God was there and found a way for me to bless the man.  To feed him both physically and spiritually.  And those words…woh.  God just gave them to me.

Don’t you know, dear reader, that He is coming back?

 

I don’t know when Christ is physically touching down, but as you rest on your pillow realize that you could pass right into eternity.  Or when you’re in your car.  Or when you’re speaking to someone.  Or in the shower.  Or eating lunch.  Once here and in the twinkling of an eye gone.

And if you belong to Him, all your tears will be washed away.  All of them.

Half-handed Cloud

Posted in Music with tags , , , on June 19, 2012 by Alex

Half-handed Cloud is the name for the “economically complex, avant garde Christian pop” musical act led by John Ringhofer.  It’s also my current musical fixation.

I want to meet John.  I have complained that most “Christian” music is lame because it is.  But Half-handed Cloud is strange and beautiful in its own very unique way.  I’ve never heard songs before about circumcision or cutting off toes, but even if I had I wouldn’t suppose they would be anywhere as funny.  Or anywhere as catchy.

Half-handed Cloud takes a bit of Psalms, a bit of Old Testament narratives, prophecies and runs it through a Play-Doh machine.

Half-handed Cloud is also keenly aware that it that doesn’t need to be any bigger than it has to be.  Most of the songs are only a minute long or two.  And it just works.

John’s a man who is very sure that he is what he is by the grace of God (1 Cor 15:10) .  He has no use for being anything other than that.

http://www.myspace.com/handycloud

If you’d like to listen to more Half-handed Cloud, you can hear it like I do through Spotify.  Which is free if you don’t mind the occasional ad.