Thursday, August 1, 2013

Blurry lines

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     I wanted to address this issue of Christian artists who are getting a lot of flack for writing "secular music".  There are a lot of people online who are making it sound like you are blurring the lines too much when you "cross-over".  So here are my thoughts to any of you artists out there who are struggling with this.I wanted to address this issue of Christian artists who are getting a lot of flack for writing "secular music".  There are a lot of people online who are making it sound like you are blurring the lines too much when you "cross-over".  So here are my thoughts to any of you artists out there who are struggling with this.

First of all:  We don't have to blur the lines at all. We just need to decide who our audience is, and who we're writing for.  This is my new formula.

  • If you're writing for "Christian Radio Critics", then you need to use their formulas, and a ton of Christianese, etc. blah, blah, blah (add nausea-mmmmmm)
  • If you're writing to God, then write to Him and Him alone.  You need to assume that all bystanders will either join you in singing to God, or walk away (offended and possibly confused). 
  • If You're singing to the Church, then do so accordingly.
  • If you're writing to everyone else, then do so Accordingly.
Second:  The problem comes in when you allow YOURSELF to blur lines that aren't there. Focus on your audience, and know that God will do his work regardless of what you are writing. If there is Christ in you, then He will not be hidden from the world. The people who are getting offended by this "blurring of lines" are simply immature, and most likely irrelevant to you and your career (as if your message was contingent on them actually buying your music) If they were actually supporting us in the first place, then we would not have gone elsewhere looking for a new audience.  
     I wanted to write to the church, about the church. but that method doesn't work for me. the Church only wants me to perform and record a certain way. the rest of what I have to offer is not welcome with her, and so I had to decide who my audience should be.
     That's why you will see a drastic change in my delivery this year, because I am now free to be an artist, instead of following the trends.

Third:  You will also notice that a lot of people in the "Christian" demographic, are marketed and publicized as "super-holy" need-to-feel-safe kinds of people, but in reality, we are just as broken and messed up as everyone else. A lot of Christians still swear at their kids, argue with their spouses,listen to 2pac and Lady Gaga, and smoke cigarettes, ALL ON THEIR WAY HOME FROM CHURCH SERVICE.
     This time last year, I was thinking to myself, "I wish I could get a show at a bar so that people at my church would come see me play."  The illusion isn't real. The majority of Christians still buy secular music, because they are still carnal.  Either people WANT God or the Don't.  It's that simple.  We have no control over their decision.
     If you want to entertain people, then appeal to their flesh. If you want to minister to them, then you're going to have to wait until they're ready for it, and do it on their terms. That's why we have youth group sets, because the setting calls for it. After all, "Ministry" is just another word for "Service".   Maybe the people listening right now are trying to get away from your type of "Service".
     I'm not trying to sound negative, but the world is like that.  Its real.  What people don't realize is that an artist needs to tell his story on a song by song basis.  Not every page in your story has a happy ending. Sometimes the hero fails to get there in time.  Sometimes the bad guy is just too strong.  Sometimes people die before their time.  Sometimes you have thoughts that you shouldn't.  And, sometimes you get hurt.  Its all part of the story.  But if you stop reading the story before it ends, then you'll never get to the part where God turns everything around.  You'll never get to the good part if you judge too soon.

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