Thursday, April 15, 2010

CCM Countdown: 5

My countdown of the 50 Contemporary Christian Music projects that had the most impact on my life and ministry through 2006 enters the top 5 today.  To see last Thursday's post and get links all the way back to #50, click here.

5)  ONLY VISITING THIS PLANET-  Larry Norman-  1972
Number 5 takes us all the way back to the very origins of CCM.  Larry Norman is often called the first Christian rocker, and this album is on every significant list of the most important Christian albums ever recorded. It is also the oldest album on this countdown.  Billboard Magazine and Time Magazine both took notice of Larry's work.  His songs have been covered by well over 300 different artists.  His mixture of lyrics concerning the radical nature of Jesus and awareness of the culture we live in were way ahead of their time and set standards that the CCM genre has quite often failed to meet.  This album was recorded in London under the watchful eye of George Martin, the Beatles famed producer.  Larry passed away in 2008.

Every song is a miniature sermon, and almost every song was controversial at the time it was written.  The Outlaw (see video at bottom) tells of the many ways the people of Jesus' time tried to define Him, and concludes by pronouncing Him the Son of God.  Why Don't You Look Into Jesus? explores the ways we try to fill the God-shaped hole in our lives with drugs, sex and alcohol when the answer is clear:  only Jesus can fill the void.  I Wish We'd All Been Ready talks of preparing our hearts now for the second coming of Christ.  The line "the Son has come and you've been left behind" was an inspiration for the best selling book series.  I Am the Six O'clock News condemned network TV for their coverage of the Vietnam War.  The Great American Novel questioned the morals and methods of the American government in ways that almost seem more appropriate today.  And the anthem of the Jesus MovementWhy Should the Devil Have All the Good Music?, asks the question that drove the church to open the doors to electric guitars and drums.  Larry's words, "I ain't knocking the hymns, just give me a song that has a beat.  I ain't knocking the hymns, just give me a song that moves my feet.  You see, I don't live them funeral march 'cause I ain't dead yet" caused quite a stir in 1972.  They would still rock the boat in many churches today.

Upon This Rock-   1969
So Long Ago In the Garden-   1973
In Another Land-  1976
Something New Under the Son-  1981

No comments:

Post a Comment

Thanks for reading,and thanks for your comment!