From Cyndi Lauper to Florida Georgia Line

cyndilauperI’m proud of my taste in music. As a child, thanks to my parents and a record player, I developed a love for the Beach Boys. Later, I developed my first crush and it wasn’t just for her wild style… Cyndi Lauper. In middle school, I began to appreciate adult contemporary music like Bryan Adams and that song “The King of Wishful Thinking” by New Found Glory. And of course there was Vanilla Ice. High school was all about the rap music. Maybe because I lived in Miami or because it was popular everywhere, I don’t know, but I loved Bone Thugs ‘N Harmony, Coolio, Uncle Al, Easy E, Wreckx-n-Effect, 95 South, 69 Boyz, and a few others.

In college, I discovered a liking for U2, Caedmon’s Call, all the while calling DC Talk my favorite band of all time. As a young adult living in Nashville, I gained a passion for the singer/songwriter artists out there like Amos Lee and Brett Dennen.

Country music started as a roller coaster. I’d love it for a while, and hate it for a while. But still, I can like everything from Sammy Kershaw’s “Vidalia” to Florida Georgia Line’s “Cruise.”

The artists that are rising to the top of my all time favorites list now are Muse, Jack White, Green Day, Zac Brown Band, and OneRepublic. Thanks for reading!

Colder Weather

“You’re a rambling man, you ain’t never gonna change. You’ve got a gypsy soul to blame and you were born for leaving.”
-Colder Weather by Zac Brown Band
(download “Colder Weather” here)

One of my favorite songs right now is “Colder Weather” by Zac Brown Band. If you haven’t seen the performance with Amos Lee, click here and be moved. It’s one of those rare performances that happen at the lowest of expected moments, yet become the most memorable. The lyrics have power, relevance, and are so personal that sometimes I think it’s written about me. And therein lies the only problem I have with the song. When I begin to believe the song is truth, I’m tricking myself into thinking I can’t change. But I believe the way a person starts doesn’t have to be the way they finish. People can change. You may have been born a leaver, but you don’t always have to be a leaver. Your dad may have left you and your mom, but that doesn’t mean you’re going to follow those footsteps. I might blame myself, claiming that I was born with a soul bent on leaving, hurting others, and being alone. But even if that’s the way my life started, it does not have to be the way it ends. There is power, no, there is a power out there that can change a gypsy soul, can change a rambling man into a family man, take a hurt soul and mend the wounds. Please listen to the song. But when you’re finished, know that it’s not the total truth. You can be changed. Seek the power that makes tomorrow better. Hopefully you can start at your local christian church and go from there.

Zac Brown Band with Amos Lee

Move Me, Baby!

One observation I’ve made about Christian radio stations has really started to bother me… most of the music they play is deep, introspective, and self-denying. I support the mission of having positive, uplifting music as an option on the radio. I’m not knocking the radio stations. Deep, introspective, self-denying songs are great but do they all have to be so thought-provoking? I like to look inward and take personal inventory just as much as the next guy, but I’d be headed for a mental breakdown if this type of music were all I was listening to.

Sometimes the brain needs a break and lots of times the heart just needs to beat, not bleed. Perhaps that’s why I find my playlist full of the most random songs. For example, my most recent playlist includes:

Rock & Roll – Eric Hutchinson
Jailhouse Rock – Elvis Presley
Good People – Jack Johnson
Freedom – Amos Lee
The Man Comes Around – Johnny Cash
Tom’s Diner – Suzanne Vega
Bad (Live) – U2
Christmas Canon Rock – Trans-Siberian Orchestra
Good Good End – Waterdeep
Jump Around – House of Pain
Made To Love – TobyMac
Oh What A World – Rufus Wainwright
That’s Not My Name – The Ting Tings
Awful Beautiful Life – Darryl Worley
Say Hey (I Love You) – Michael Franti
Body Language – Jesse McCartney
Ridin’ Dirty – Chamillionaire
Paradise City – Guns and Roses

We all have depth at some level and it’s true that our souls long for music that moves us. But we also need music that can make us move!

Mumford & Sons:

Zac Brown Band: