Category Archives: Features

MOMENTOUS MONDAYS: INFLUENTIAL ARTISTS OF THE NEXT 5-10 YEARS – WEEK 2: LAUREN DAIGLE

Recently, I have started to become a bit more reflective and introspective- and more specially, the more and more I think about life in general, and the way it has gone for myself and maybe for others I have come in contact with; the more grateful I am to be living in Australia. And I’m sure the same goes for anyone living in the U.S, England, New Zealand, and other English-speaking countries I reckon. Not that other developing countries are ‘bad’ or anything like that, but I’ve recently noticed something. For all of the faults of Trump, for all of the issues to do with Brexit and for all of the turmoil and fallout with the Israel Falou saga; one thing remains constant. And it’s the wide range of music available to us via Spotify, iTunes, Youtube, Google Play, Amazon and other streaming services. In stores where we can buy physical CD’s (yep, they still exist!), the range for albums of different genres is quite varied, and it is in my own opinion that if you were to search for an album to listen to, you’d probably find at least one, but maybe two or three, that you could like straight away. Are there luxuries of music and the wide variety of artists available in countries like China, India and other countries in Africa?

Continue reading MOMENTOUS MONDAYS: INFLUENTIAL ARTISTS OF THE NEXT 5-10 YEARS – WEEK 2: LAUREN DAIGLE

FLASHBACK FRIDAYS: WEEK 42 (Offerings & Offerings II by Third Day)- When the world is falling around us, why don’t we just simply worship?

Yesterday and the day before was one of those days. Just one of those days where everything didn’t come together like I wanted to, and a day where so many things happened that made me feel a bit…you know funny, weird, uneasy inside. You know those days, right? Actually, I reckon there’s been about a few instances over the past few weeks that have tested my patience- and I’m sure my brother Jon can confirm this- and it’s led me to this conclusion. When we as humans and people on planet Earth are faced with uncomfortable situations and things beyond our control, most of us try to fix the situation on our own, or we just run away and put our head in the sand! So let me dive in and tell you what’s been happening of late since I last posted, and I’ll give you more insight into where I’m at in my life.

Continue reading FLASHBACK FRIDAYS: WEEK 42 (Offerings & Offerings II by Third Day)- When the world is falling around us, why don’t we just simply worship?

MOMENTOUS MONDAYS: INFLUENTIAL ARTISTS OF ALL TIME – WEEK 13: SARA BAREILLES

Influential artists come in two groups, I reckon. The prolific ones, the ones that people universally and unanimously agree upon, that they are influential at all. Bands and artists like U2, Michael Jackson, Elvis, Adele, Queen, The Bee Gees, Bob Dylan, Johnny Cash, ABBA; artists that have made a definitive mark on music history and have influenced the culture of music and moved collectively the mark of where music was before, to where music is now. Influential artists such as these artists mentioned above, challenge the status quo on what genres should look and even sound like, moving outside the box as how to even approach genres that would otherwise have been overlooked and undervalued, underappreciated and even underutilised, had it not been for this particular artist or pioneer of the sub-genre discussed. Then there’s another group of artists that we would consider to be influential. No, it’s not necessarily the popular artists, though sometimes, popularity and influential do co-exist and collide. But rather, artists can be influential without being popular at all- they are just influential in the niche market they focus their music upon. An example is this- Andrew Peterson, of which I delved into a few weeks back. No, he won’t be of the same level of popularity as someone like John Legend or Jason Mraz, nor do I reckon he should be. But within the realms and confines of Christian music, especially Christian folk music; Andrew is very much known, loved, respected, and even admired for his quirky lyrics and hard-hitting imagery that speaks volumes to whomever hears it. Is Andrew Peterson popular? Definitely not. Influential? 100%- to the people who do indeed know his music, and to the ‘genre’ of Christian music as a whole.

Continue reading MOMENTOUS MONDAYS: INFLUENTIAL ARTISTS OF ALL TIME – WEEK 13: SARA BAREILLES

BEST OF 2019- PART 2: TOP 15 ANTICIPATED NEW SHOWS OF THE FORTHCOMING 2019/20 TV SEASON

If you have been an avid viewer of this site since the inception way back in 2014 just over 5 years ago, then you could say with confidence that apart from listening to music, and this recently comprises of both Christian and mainstream music (and sometimes religiously following an artist’s career); watching TV shows are one of my greatest hobbies/pasttimes- and for better or worse, I’d say you’re probably right. Not that I have a lot of time to check out TV shows (old and new)…but anyway, that’s beyond the point.

Continue reading BEST OF 2019- PART 2: TOP 15 ANTICIPATED NEW SHOWS OF THE FORTHCOMING 2019/20 TV SEASON

MY IDEAL WOW HITS TRACKLISTS: POST 9- WOW HITS 2005

If you have been an avid fan of this site, you probably would have noticed that we have posted many WOW Hits predictions at strategic points during the year for a particular installment. But the predictions were only ‘timely’ for WOW Hits 2015 onwards (basically from when this site was active four years ago until now!). So it’s time to once again revisit another older WOW Hits and be nostalgic, and see if the track listing is really the ‘year’s best’ or not (as we have done previously for other WOW Hits releases that you can view here!). So…you can view the official track list of WOW Hits 2005 on Wikipedia, and then my fantasy list below (which include some tracks the same as the official list, and some tracks different)! Enjoy reading, and coming up with your own ‘official lists’!

Continue reading MY IDEAL WOW HITS TRACKLISTS: POST 9- WOW HITS 2005

WOW HITS 2020: WHAT’S YOUR PREDICTION (PART 4)?

So, a few months has gone by, and what does that mean? Another WOW Hits 2020 predictions, of course. We all know that WOW Hits is the album that causes many polarising views out of any album of a Christian nature, that releases each year. And since my last prediction in early March, we’ve come to hear great songs of hope and encouragement. Should WOW Hits 2020 be timely to current radio songs and trends, or should they stick with proven artists and songs time and time again? Maybe, a bit of both. Here’s hoping this year’s compilation gets it right, but it’s highly doubtful. So without further ado, here’s my fourth (and quite possibly final!) stab at the tracklist for WOW Hits 2020, that is until the actual tracklist comes out in July/August. Happy predicting!

Continue reading WOW HITS 2020: WHAT’S YOUR PREDICTION (PART 4)?

MOMENTOUS MONDAYS: INFLUENTIAL ARTISTS OF ALL TIME – WEEK 12: DC TALK

Which band do you reckon has shaped Christian music the most? Has reminded us that songs about God, faith, hope, doubt, boldness and truth, need not to be sung and delivered in a cheesy over-spiritualised way, but rather, with power and emotion, coupled with musical genres of pop, hip hop, rock, fusing together a myriad of genres to let people know that there is more to Christian music than just hymns sung in pews each Sunday morning? Sure there have been bands like the Newsboys, Jars of Clay, Audio Adrenaline, Third Day, PETRA, Stryper and Family Force 5; that have all amassed fans alongside critics praising their involvement in shaping Christian music history over the years. but for me, there’s one band that stands tall above the rest, in terms of their own influence, not just in Christian music, but for music in general. Yes, if you’ve read this far, you probably know which band I’m gonna delve into. DC Talk– Toby McKeehan (now known as TobyMac), Michael Tait and Kevin Max, who make up this trio, are even now considered to be one of the most influential bands of the Christian music genre (if ever there is a boxed ‘genre’ music of a Christian nature can go in!). DC Talk, though only active for a little over a decade, have nevertheless encouraged and impacted so many, and even now, as TobyMac continues with his solo career, Kevin also with solo offerings and Michael in another popular band, the Newsboys (as lead singer!); these three humble members of arguably the greatest Christian band in modern history, are still impacting the world today, both with their solo (and Newsboys) material, alongside their DC Talk repertoire of yesteryear!

Continue reading MOMENTOUS MONDAYS: INFLUENTIAL ARTISTS OF ALL TIME – WEEK 12: DC TALK

MOMENTOUS MONDAYS: INFLUENTIAL ARTISTS OF ALL TIME – WEEK 11: U2

U2 need no explanation or even introduction as to why they are included on my own 100 influential artists list. Or rather, they need no explanation as to why they should be included on any influential artist list- because, to be frank; this Irish band is one that everyone can unanimously agree upon, and quite deservingly so! For Bono, The Edge, Larry Mullen Jr and Adam Clayton are U2,  formed in the late 1970s, and are still active today. In fact, dare I say that this band is by far one of history’s most influential rock bands…ever? Like Michael Jackson was to pop, and Backstreet Boys was to boy bands, like Whitney Houston was to powerful female singers, and The Beatles and Elvis was to generally music in general, one can’t deny the impact U2 has had, not only to rock music, but also to music as a whole. For Bono and co. have created music that is honest, and though many of their music can seem a little too honest for what mainstream pop radio wants at the moment; what this band has uncovered long ago that still holds true today is this- that many people, young and old, rich and poor, people of many walks of life, and many different roads of faith, are yearning and wanting the same thing- to connect to a song on a soul level.

Continue reading MOMENTOUS MONDAYS: INFLUENTIAL ARTISTS OF ALL TIME – WEEK 11: U2

FLASHBACK FRIDAYS: WEEK 41 (Albums with labels? Without labels?)- Is it heretical or blasphemous to be encouraged and inspired by ‘non-Christian’ music?

Why do we have labels? I mean sure we label things to identify them and make sense of them, but does hanging onto them once they’re defined by us, do us any good? If they’re inanimate objects, sure labels are fine, because the outcomes and consequences of us still having them, isn’t that great or profound. But if we’re dealing with living, breathing people, then labelling people can lead to all kinds of outcomes, of which none are encouraging nor edifying. Or if we’re dealing with music or food or movies, and then the labels place limits on what we can or can’t watch/listen/eat etc; then our views on the world and on society could become skewed and warped. Who’s the culprit then? The parents of the child who is deemed to have an unconventional view, or is it the rest of us, who are obsessed with labels, ultimately being the ‘thought police’ or ‘action police’ with regards to what we do, say, think, and whom we interact with?

Continue reading FLASHBACK FRIDAYS: WEEK 41 (Albums with labels? Without labels?)- Is it heretical or blasphemous to be encouraged and inspired by ‘non-Christian’ music?

MOMENTOUS MONDAYS: INFLUENTIAL ARTISTS OF ALL TIME – WEEK 10: ANDREW PETERSON

I have been wrestling a little bit over this last week about my choice of artist that I’m going to delve into today. And while I’ve said countless times in blog posts previously that popular need not be the same as influential, nor should it, in this artist’s case, popular is indeed not what this artist is (if you look at popularity in the mainstream pop market). But, having said that, upon listening and thoroughly delving deep into the music and mysteries that this artist speaks of, boy can I say that singer-songwriter and Christian artist Andrew Peterson, is by far one of the most influential artists that has ever graced Christian music in the modern era (2000 and onward). There, I said it. Andrew Peterson, though his name unrecognisable in terms of mainstream music, is indeed known quite well within the confines of CCM and music about the Christian faith. It is in this blog series that I have managed to hopefully give a portrayal of many different styles and musical genres, across various time periods. Influential artists within the Christian music ‘genre’ (if you can call Christian music a genre!) were always going to be present on my influential artists of all-time list; because frankly, I am a Christian and Christian music is and always will be a great form and source of encouragement and inspiration, whether or not the listener is of the faith, or not. And so, upon amassing who I was going to discuss about within my list of 100 names (and ever evolving names, I must add!); it stood to reason that a non-negotiable artist to explore would be Andrew and his music. Since exploring Andrew’s music around 5 years ago, my musical tastes have been stretched, altered, challenged, and even matured because of such delving, and this past week, I’ve come to appreciate a style within the Christian industry that isn’t necessarily discussed or even musically envisaged. Call it being safe, sticking close to radio format songs; whatever the case, an artist like Andrew Peterson and the music style that he incorporates (folk rock, roots rock, country gospel) is rarely promoted even within the Christian industry, because, to put it bluntly, Andrew’s music is different.

Continue reading MOMENTOUS MONDAYS: INFLUENTIAL ARTISTS OF ALL TIME – WEEK 10: ANDREW PETERSON