Ranked top 10 DC Talk songs of all time: 5 – 1

Coming up with a top 10 list for DC Talk is like deciding which holiday I love the second most (first is obviously Christmas). Or which niece I love more. It’s an impossible task! But just like my nieces, each one of these songs is amazing and fantastic, and while I can’t rank the nieces, I can rank the songs. Check out numbers 10 through 6 by clicking here. And now, along with the album in parentheses, here are my top 5…

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5. The Hardway (Free At Last)
I’m as stubborn as they come, so when this song came out I was relieved to know I wasn’t the only one. It was also very encouraging to hear about God’s forgiveness and patience!

Favorite lyric: “It took so long for me to see, that I’m a victim of nature and me, Left to myself I realize, I am the maker of my own demise.”


4. The King (Allelujah) (DCTalk)

This song just makes me feel good. It’s off their self-titled debut album. I’ve always loved the rap from Toby, the smooth gospel voices of Kevin of Michael, and, of course, the truth in the lyrics. I also love the heavy guitar presence in this one! Makes me want to dance I my PJs!

Favorite lyric: “As she fell to the ground, she began to weep. Heard a voice and turned to hear the Savior speak. Christ the Messiah, risen up from the dead. He’s alive, she cried, like the prophesy read. It’s a story of my Savior, a reason to sing. Allelujah, come on, Christ is King!”


3. Heavenbound (DCTalk)

I was in middle school in Stafford, VA when DC Talk’s first album came out and this was my favorite song from that album. I think it was the trumpets that got me, as I was a trumpet player from 4th to 7th grades 🙂

Favorite lyric: “Opportunity knocks through a different love. Not love like we know it, like ya love your girl. It’s a love from above not of this world.”

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2. Jesus Freak (Jesus Freak)
This could easily be their best song ever as it relates to mainstream acceptance and declaring what some would use as an insult. Me, a Jesus Freak? Why yes, I am! The song itself is a great example of mosh pit worthy rock music, with unashamed lyrics that speak to your soul.

Favorite lyric: “With skins on his back and hair on his face, they thought he was strange by the locusts he ate. The Pharisees tripped when they heard him speak, until the king took the head of this Jesus freak.”


1. I Wish We’d All Been Ready (Jesus Freak CD single)

I first heard this one night at a Bible study as a high schooler in Miami, Florida. It was part of a video we were watching and instantly, I was captivated by the harmonies and the message. It was different than the DC Talk I knew, and it made me love the band even more. Plus, Kevin’s voice is incredible.

Favorite lyric: “A man and wife asleep in bed, she hears a noise and turns her head he’s gone. I wish we’d all been ready.”

 


 
So there you have it! If you were to make your own list, there could be 10 different songs on it, and the list would be just as valid. Just about every song can relate to someone in one way or another, which is why they were such an influential band in the 90s. Since then, Toby, Michael, and Kevin have had success as solo artists, so for fun, here’s my list of a few favorites from their individual efforts…

TobyMac:
Lights Shine Bright / Let’s Get This Party Started / Gone

Kevin Max:
The Cross / When He Returns / Seek

Michael Tait:
Unglued / All You Got / His Cheeseburger

-Out of the Wilderness

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Ranked top 10 DC Talk songs of all time: 10 – 6

Let me just start by saying how difficult it was to narrow down this list. Just between you and me, I rather rank almost anything else. Favorite presidents? Sure. Best Disney movies? OK. What’s socially acceptable? Fine. But to rank these songs is like picking my favorite pet. Or my favorite episode of Friends. It’s nearly impossible. However, now I will say the words. I will say the words that consume me all day long. I won’t sugarcoat it at all, so help me God. Without further ado, let’s dive in with songs 10 through 6.

Note: Click the song title to listen via YouTube, and album titles are in parentheses.

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10. Time Is… (Free At Last)

I remember listening to this song as a young high schooler in Miami, Florida. Maybe it’s the heavy drum beat or the weighty guitar riffs reminiscent of 80s hair bands, but it became a favorite about as fast as it takes to perm a mullet.

Favorite lyric: “The signs of the times are dropping like flies. The cries of the people around us imply, they’re lookin’ for an answer that we already know. But time is definitely on the go.”


9. Colored People (Jesus Freak)

I was in 11th grade, and remember laying on my bed and listening to this entire album soon after it came out. We were living on Governors Island, adjacent to Manhattan, at the time. This song was one of my favorites off that album. Funny how the message is still so very, very relevant almost 20 years later.

Favorite lyric: “Ignorance has wronged some races, and vengeance is the Lord’s. If we aspire to share this space, repentance is the cure.”


8. My Will (Exodus – compilation album)

I first heard this song when my sister lent me her CD as I was leaving the Davis family beach cottage at St. Teresa one afternoon. I listened to the whole album all the way to Tallahassee. Every song is good, but this one is why I remember that day so well.

Favorite lyric: “Complexity haunts me for I am two men, entrenched in a battle that I’ll never win.”

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7. Supernatural (Supernatural)
My college friend Brandon managed to get an early copy of this CD. I remember him, myself, Scott, and another friend or two listening to it in a men’s bathroom in Panama City Beach, Florida. That’s not weird at all. Maybe we needed a urinal because we were excited enough to pee our pants? You don’t know! But hey, go find a public bathroom and check it out for yourself, this is a great song from a great album.

Favorite lyric: I need an intervention, A touch of providence. It goes beyond religion, to my very circumstance.”


6. Lean On Me (Free At Last)

DC Talk’s take on one of my all-time favorite songs doesn’t disappoint. They add a southern gospel sound while infusing their rap/rock style to make it a win/win kind of situation in my book.

Favorite lyric: “Brother to brother we need to learn to love each other, so lean on me when you’re in trouble. I cast my cares on Christ ’cause He cares for me, so when you need a shoulder to cry on, just lean.”

 

 


 

Phew! That was tough. So many songs to choose from. Well, there are still the top 5 to go, so check back tomorrow for my top 5 DC Talk songs of all time. In the meantime, feel free to comment below with your favorites or any stories you have of the band.

-Out of the Wilderness

Being punished by God

Do you ever feel like you’re being punished by God? I had one of those experiences recently, and I’m so glad it didn’t last long. In those couple of days one thing I found interesting is that I had anger towards God. And that, my friends, is me admitting I’m not very spiritually mature. To think about it another way, try remembering when one of your parents grounded you. More times that not, we were instantly mad at our parents, right? Forget whatever we did wrong, that was totally beside the point! How dare mom or dad discipline us and RUIN OUR LIVES!!!!!!!
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“I turned my back on everything that was true.”

That’s the same way I acted when I felt like I was being punished by God. I was all like, “Wassup with that, God?” “Why me?” “Why don’t you care?” And God was all like, “Read the Bible!” “Isaiah 58.” “Chump!” OK, OK, not in those exact words but I opened up to Isaiah 58 and yowza, a scolding. A brief recap: God’s people were wondering why He didn’t seem to care about them (this happened quite a bit with them). They did this or that thinking it’s what God wanted. But He called them out on it, with beautiful clarity and insight. That’s the first half of the chapter, anyway. It goes on to offer what God desired from them, and for them. It’s sweet, actually, and very encouraging. After reading that chapter, I saw my attitude for what it really was: sour, unjustified, and immature.

“Left to myself I realize / I am the maker of my own demise.”

I was upset with God when I should’ve been upset with myself. What I blamed Him for was actually just a consequence of my own shortcoming. And while He may have allowed it to happen, feeling like punishment to me, it might have simply been Him using the consequences as discipline. Like if you’re a parent, maybe you did’t save your child from getting suspended when they got caught skipping school or whatever. Know what I mean? They reaped (rept? rooped?) what they had sown. It’s a chance for them to learn something, even if it’s the hard way.

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“Some people gotta learn the hardway.”

This experience was a low moment, but I hope I never forget it because man, God is so good. He hung with me through it and even had a blessing for me on the other side. Totally unfair. A blessing. I was all like, “Really?” and God was all like, “Really.”

Not in those exact words. 🙂

-Out of the Wilderness

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!

Music Roulette: 50 Songs in 1 Paragraph

How many songs can you identify? The first hint is that there are fifty songs listed, and each song lyric connects to the next through one or more overlapping words. Good luck! (you can look at the key words listed on this post for some help!)

I miss those blue eyes. How you kiss me at night, I miss the way we sleeps tonight. Aweemba wop, aweemba wop, a weemba wopbobaloobop a wop bam boom shake, shake, shake the room. She was struck down, it was her doom. Annie, are you ok? So, Annie are you still mine? I need your love. Godspeed your love to me, wanna talk about I, wanna talk about number one, oh my me my, what I think, what I like, what I know, what I want, what I see, by the dawn’s early light? What so proudly we hailed at the cross, at the cross where I first saw the light, and the burden of my heart breaks, no, it don’t break even if he promised me the world. Just remember I’m forever your girl you know it’s true. Ooo ooo oooo, I love you every step of the way and I will always love you so, promise I’ll never let you go, in the still of the night. In the still of the Britney song was on, and the Britney song was on, and the Britney song was on a white, sandy beach of Hawai’i. The sound of the ocean soothes my name and it’s probably ’cause you think you’re cooler than me burn, but that’s alright because I like the way it hurts, I like the end. And you could have it all, my empire of dirt. I will let you down, I will make you wanna be happy for the rest of your life, never make a pretty woman your wife. Take it on the run, baby. If that’s the way you want it, baby, then I don’t want you around ’cause you know where I’ll be found, when I come around. And when you smile that smile the whole world turns upside down. Whenever you come around the corner when she comes. She’ll be coming around the corner. That’s me in the spotlight losing my song. It is my song. Now I live every day like there will never be a last one till they’re gone, like Frank Sinatra. Like Elvis and his mom. Like Al Pacino’s cash, nothing lasts in this life, back to reality. Back to life, back to me, will you? Baby, just come to my window, crawl inside, wait by the light of the moon, you saw me standing alone, without a dream in my heart for the first time, and I was like baby, baby, baby. Oh, baby you, you got what I need. But you say he’s just a friend. But you say I only hear what I want to: I don’t listen hard, don’t pay attention to the distance that you’re running down a dream that never would come from, rain is a good thing. Rain makes corn, corn makes whiskey. Whiskey makes my girl. Talking ’bout my girl. My chick bad, my chick hood. My chick do stuff that yo’ chick wish she could be the one. He’s lightning. Spark’s are flyin’. Everywhere I go he’s always on my mind. You were always on my minds. And we can’t build our dreams on suspicious minds eye, I see your face, you smile as you show me grace. In my woody I would take you everywhere I go. So I say from me to you, I will make your dreams come true. Do you still love me tomorrow? Tonight with words unspoken, you said I’m the only one life, but we’re not the same. We get to carry each other. Carrying your love with me. West Virginia down to Tennessee. Take me to another place. Take me to another land, this land is my land, from California, to the New York Islands in the stream, that is what we are. No one in between, how can we be wrong? Sail away with me, to be on the ground. Your head is there to move your around. So stand.

Deal Breakers in a Dating Relationship

Everyone seems to have their deal-breakers. I never really thought about mine until the term “deal-breakers” became popular a few years ago. Typically I stay away from trendy words or phrases because they annoy me. Anyone remember the book, “I Kissed Dating Goodbye“? When I was in college that book had it’s fifteen minutes of fame, but not with me. I always joked about it, something like this, “Oh, you kissed dating goodbye? Well, I kissed dating!” Ok, it’s probably a good book with valuable information that will keep the reader from heartache and miscommunication with the opposite sex, but as 1990s rock group DC Talk sang, “Some people gotta learn the hard way.” To be clear about what image I’m projecting of myself in college, I didn’t date much at all. Mainly because I did stuff like this:

wanted to date and learn the hard way, and sadly, in some cases I did. However, with the experiences and failed attempts at long relationships, I learned what I liked. I also learned what I didn’t like, which would later become my deal-breakers. Early on in college I created of list of things I wanted (deal-makers, perhaps?) in an ideal mate. Things like a goofy sense of humor, enjoying but not understanding sports,a dog lover, a healthy disregard for cats and the Florida Gators, on and on the list went. I was very specific in what I was looking for and what I knew I wanted. Probably too specific because now, as a thirty-one year old adult male, my list has shrunk to a few general yet more absolute characteristics. It’s also easier now to narrow down the potential field using the list of deal-breakers rather than the deal-makers. What I mean is this: instead of finding what I want to live with, it’s easier to eliminate the ones who have what I cannot live with.