Archives For Music

 

Yeah. I’m going to go out on a limb and say this might be the most incredible poetry you’ll hear all year. David Bowden does an unbelievable job.

Just hit play. You’ll be impressed at the 2:50 mark. Or at least I was.

And I saw him: Death, with his mighty sting, exhaling in every breath the plight he brings. To the grave he gave victory…

Triumphing over life with the fear of endless sleep. Endlessly, we hide from our mortality. Mortally wounded from birth

We lie to ourselves from infancy, infinitely investing time in a life that will inevitably be taken by this incredible creature that stands before me:

Death

He manifests himself on ordinary days. His 6-foot stomach growls with hunger pangs.

For his meal, he cannot wait. So we are forced to taste him even before the grave.

We are all dying, there is no other way. I see him in Haitian and Japanese earthquakes. He’s hating the escapees of his cruel wakes.

I see him in poverty impoverishing the quality of life for regions that are reachable, and in those with the

reach who find reason not to reach out to treat what is treatable. I see him in disease taking life out of uninfected yet affected families.

I see him in oppression, pressing down on the oppressed and the oppressor.

I see him in depression, in Prozac and pain pills, in razor blades and bed-side wills. I see him in abuse: physical, mental, emotional misuse.

I see him in spiritual confusion, material obsession, physical possessions. I see him in marital transgressions, childhood remorse from an ugly divorce.

I see him in our slavery to appearances, appearing to care more about our images than those in dying villages.

I see him in our ignorance, ignoring truth for some comfortable inference.

I see his emergence in our churches as we pull out emergency verses as deterrents to religious differences, going on the defensive, defending our way of worship, making community worthless.

Death is killing us before we even enter the surface of the earth. We are in the service of his words, “It is finished”; the end of our birth.

We cannot hide from his wretched curse. For death and his grave we constantly rehearse.

Even God himself was coerced. Divinity immersed itself in humanity, humbly taking on flesh, scorning vanity.

The world saw his way of life as insanity. Insisting he cease speaking of his radical Christianity. But Man found him guilty, accusing God of blasphemy.

Performing the ultimate usurpation by slaying Christ on Calvary.

But through their cowardly cross, Jesus embossed mankind with amnesty, championing over death with the beauty of his fatal injury.

And I know, many still doubt, and rightfully so, bringing up this inquiry? What does that poor Jewish man dying on a Roman tree 2,000 years ago have to do with me?

I reply simply: Christ came and died to marry his bride to be.

And though death could kill the groom, it could not kill the ring. God made us one with Christ and life in matrimony’s cling.

Now, the undying church, his ever-living wife can sing.

Oh Death, where is your sting? Oh grave, where is your victory? For we have risen above your misery! We will not succumb to your finality!

We have overcome your infamous mystery! In the infinite reign of Christ’s ministry! For we are the resurrection!

The insurrection of fatality! We are the risen deity, the intersection of a dead yet living body! We live through imperfections, for we died to become holy!

We cannot be contained by the mouth of the grave. We are the willing slaves to the one who rose from the garden cave.

We have passed through death to new birth.

We gave the grave to the earth, and we claim today the cross’ worth! The body of his rising!

We are the risen church.

Christ is Risen. Amen?

Continue Reading…

civil-wars2

I recommended the band last year and I had a bunch of you send me notes that you really enjoyed the band, so I am reminding you, my friends, to again check out The Civil Wars.  They’ve got a great sound and released their first full-length album for $7.99 on iTunes yesterday.  I’m digging it.

The music is for fans of: The Swell Season, Damien Rice, Lisa Hannigan, She & Him, Alison Krauss & Robert Plant

If you’d like their live album for free, you can get that here, or head to iTunes to get the digital copy of their new album, Barton Hollow.

Stream it for free below:

Music Video:

What do you think? You like the sound?

whatsnext

Overwhelming? Yes.

But not when you think about creating a fan base by simply making great music and doing shows.

Also remember – it takes 10,000 hours of practice to become an expert at something.  Yes, I typed the correct number of zeroes there.  This is the real overwhelming piece of the equation.  Becoming good at what you do.

What do you think of the future of the music industry?  Do artists need to continue to pursue most of these marketing strategies (in the video) in order to be successful?

talain

I’d be deceiving you if I didn’t share my bias for Talain Rayne.  Talain and I are friends.  Last year, we met up in Lancaster, we drank some delicious chai, and he asked me if I would be his manager.  Unfortunately, I was not taking any artists in my lineup, as I was moving to New York.  Otherwise, I would have signed Talain in a second!  So, my only bias is that we are friends from the same school. Beyond that, all that you need to know is that Talain is making fantastic music and giving away his debut album for free.  If I were to write a review, it would say,

Talain’s music makes you want to get up and dance, yet there is incredible depth behind his lyrics. The sounds are infectious and should be featured on the next iPod commercial.

or…

If Coldplay went indie instead of mainstream, this is what it would sound like.

That is, if they are still making iPod commercials.  They meaning Steve Jobs.

Anyways, you can hear my favorite song (“Dear Sister, Your Brother”) from Attic Lights below, or you can download the ENTIRE album for free.  Yup. 11 tracks. Free.  Just enter your email and postal code in the second widget below (and don’t worry, you aren’t going to get a bunch of “come to my concert” spam). No catch.

Enjoy my friends.



This week I was privileged to giveaway 3 Gungor albums here at the blog.  I’m still highly recommending their album, “Beautiful Things”, and not just because I got to talk with Michael, their lead singer.  They are making good music.

So, for the giveaway, I used Interactive Fruit Machine again.  Here are the results:

gungor-giveaway-1

gungor-giveaway-2

gungor-giveaway-3

Congratulations Ken (who is giving his copy to Gotwalt), Jason, and Heath!  I’ll be contacting you today. 🙂

gungor-interview

TO BE ENTERED TO WIN A FREE COPY OF GUNGOR’S NEW ALBUM, SIMPLY WRITE YOUR FAVORITE WORSHIP ARTIST/GROUP AND A BRIEF EXPLANATION OF WHY IN THE COMMENTS BELOW.  FOR A SECOND CHANCE TO WIN, RT ON TWITTER OR RE-POST WITH A LINK TO JONATHAN SIGMON ON FACEBOOK. WINNERS WILL BE SELECTED AT RANDOM. CONTEST ENDS THURSDAY, MAY 20TH AT MIDNIGHT.

Maybe you have never heard of Gungor, but my advice to you is to take a listen!  I got the privilege of doing a phone interview with Michael Gungor, the lead singer of the band, and got to ask him a bunch of questions.  Some of them were serious and some were just for fun.  I hope you will enjoy this podcast-style interview, which I’ve posted below (no visuals, really).  I’ve also posted the questions and a few highlights of Michael’s answers below.

Gungor Interview with Jonathan Sigmon from Jonathan Sigmon

Tell us a little bit about your faith journey and your music.

I’ve grown up in the church and following Christ, but what that means has definitely changed…

What is your favorite t-shirt?

V-necks.

What’s it like to work with your wife? Is it hard to transition between work and fun?

“We both have the musician temperament and so sometimes the ordinary life skills come more difficult.” Yep.

Your album is called Beautiful things.  What would you plant in your garden if you were growing something?

“I would plant peace in my garden.” 🙂

What’s the goal of your music?

The content and the message are important, but the artwork was just as important as that artwork.

Interesting quote: “If music is just about the lyrics, then the music is basically just propoganda.”

What would you say is the purpose of a corporate worship gathering? (9 minute mark)

To gather to remind ourselves what we are supposed to be doing.

“WWJD?”

🙂

How do you respond to criticism, whether it be to your music, what you stand for, etc. What do you do with that?

“We should be willing to say ‘I disagree with you.’ It’s sad to see people who argue for a God that doesn’t love everyone.

Sometimes worship music is criticized for being overly simplistic. On a whole, do you think it should be more musical or more simple? (14:30 mark)

“Be diligent with your craft and be who you are and called to be. Don’t try to fit some other sort of mold.”

What if God was one of us? Just a stranger on a bus? Trying to make his way home?

🙂

What advice would you give to local worship leaders?

I would encourage local worship leaders to remind yourself of the heart of what you are trying to do.  Remember the big story we are a part of.

Describe your concerts that you do outside of the church. (18:30 mark)

The “Beautiful Things Events” have a different kind of worship…

What’s the most challenging thing about leading worship on a regular basis?

The most challenging thing is that you are constantly pouring out.  Worship leaders need to have times where they are filled up too, to avoid becoming jaded, dry, or cynical.


I hope you’ve enjoyed getting to know Michael better. Pick up Gungor’s music from iTunes here. You’ll be happy with your decision.

WANT A CHANCE AT WINNING GUNGOR’S NEW ALBUM FOR FREE? COMMENT WITH YOUR FAVORITE WORSHIP ARTIST AND WHY BELOW.  IF YOU HAVE NEVER LISTENED TO WORSHIP MUSIC, JUST WRITE YOUR FAVORITE BAND.  OR…JUST SAY “GIMME A CD FO’ FREE! AND SOME WAFFLE FRIES!” 🙂