Thursday, March 30, 2006

Christian Music Sightings on Popular TV

I've heard Switchfoot songs on Smallville, but then, Switchfoot's a bit more mainstream and their message is more subtle. So I was genuinely surprised Tuesday night when I heard these lyrics from Kutless's All of the Words being played at the end of Scrubs:

By Your grace You let me come talk to You
It's not that I'm worthy I thank you Jesus
For the love that You have shown

All of the words in all of my life that could never explain and never describe
All of my love, which is nothing to hide so I lift up my hands and I worship
(If you're not familiar with Kutless, the group is currently popular on Christian radio stations with songs like Strong Tower and Voice of God Speak.)

It really surprised me, since Scrubs isn't exactly the watchdog-group poster child for "family-friendliness" on television. [Of course, family-friendly basically means "this show doesn't have any anything that's on our Bad Stuff™ list.]

It makes me want to ask questions like, Who chose this music? Why this song? It's interesting to me when I see expressions of my faith so overt in popular culture. Of course, it's always there, as Greg Stevenson might tell you, but it does tend to be a bit more subtle.

Then I found out on the radio yesterday (Wednesday) morning that one of the contestants on American Idol performed the song Shackles sung by the duo Mary Mary. Of course, American Idol is a favorite of the family-oriented watchdog groups. That makes sense, considering their strong emphasis on outward appearance. Singing ability might be important, but if you can't look and act like a celebrity, you don't have a chance. That's the message I want my daughter to hear. OK - let me get back down off this soapbox.

As I was saying, Mandisa sang Shackles, so the entire American Idol viewership heard her share
Been through the fire and the rain
Bound in every kind of way
But God has broken every chain
So let me go right now

I just wanna praise you...
But it wasn't well-received by the judges. Randy (while praising her singing) questioned her choice of songs; Simon called it indulgent (not sure what he meant by that), and while Paula loved the singing, she seemed ambivalent about the song itself. (I don't watch American Idol, but luckily my brother and sister-in-law record it, so I was at least able to watch this segment.)

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