All posts by Jonathan Andre

MOMENTOUS MONDAYS: INFLUENTIAL ARTISTS OF ALL TIME – WEEK 56: COLBIE CAILLAT + GONE WEST

Music has the power to change a life. Or several lives. Or they can just bring things to the surface that you may have tucked away in yourself for quite some time. Regardless of what you think music is to you, what music genre you listen to, what era of music you are a fan of, one can’t deny this fact and proposition- that music changes lives. A song, at the right moment and time in someone’s life, can change the trajectory of that particular person, whatever that is. I know we have all heard the cliché saying that ‘music is the universal language’ (but hang on, isn’t the universal language food?), but regardless of how cliché that sounds, I betcha that statement is 100% dead-on true. Because it is. No matter if you love rock, or pop, or country, or metal, screamo, folk, acoustic, even Christian music or worship music; music can creep into our very souls and show us things about ourselves that maybe we haven’t realised they were there in the first place. Listening to music can be a cool thing as we enjoy something and have a good time (like when music is just background beats at a party); or music can really transform a person’s character and personality- from the inside out. It is when the music can really transcend its time period and artist, that it can truly be considered timeless- lasting years upon years, and still having the same impact on people now as I’m sure it did back then. For we may not always have to understand what is being said in the music for us to be impacted and affected by it in a positive way- just because all the classical pieces don’t have words, nor the famous opera singers, delivering their work in English; that doesn’t mean we can’t be connected to the songs, even on a soul level. Music is here to stay; and is a reminder for us all that songs delve into territories and circumstances that often a sermon or a discussion online, can never do. Millions of things are often discussed in songs that can be relatable to people from all walks of life- love is discussed. Hate is discussed. Identity, worry, belief in God, doubt, uncertainty- there’s a lot of things that music often gets right, and why there is always a certain appeal to music in all its forms and facets, across decades and years, and in and amongst all the zillions of musical genres there have been. Music makes you feel happy, sad, convicted, compelled, challenged, and everything else in between.

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MOMENTOUS MONDAYS: INFLUENTIAL ARTISTS OF ALL TIME – WEEK 55: HANSON

I dunno where you were when it was the 1990s. Maybe you were growing up like I did. Maybe you were an adult working, trying to make a living, or maybe you were just born during that decade…but whatever the case may be, you cannot deny that the 1990s- the decade, had some pretty cool stuff going on, in the realms of TV, movies and music. I mean, think about it for a moment. In 1994, quite possibly one of the most poignant and heartfelt Disney cartoon movies graced the cinemas in The Lion King, while the 1990s also gave to us the first in the Disney/Pixar movie series, Toy Story. Movies like Good Will Hunting, Mrs Doubtfire, Clueless, The Matrix, The Castle, Forrest Gump, The Shawshank Redemption, Braveheart, The Parent Trap, Schindler’s List, The Truman Show, Space Jam, Terminator 2: Judgement Day, were all prominent in society and culture way back when I myself was growing up, not to mention one of the most underrated movies in the whole 1990s decade, That Thing You Do. The Nintendo 64 was around during the 90s decade also, and I can remember myself as a kid, always staying up late during my primary school years, playing N64 games like 1080, Diddy Kong Racing, Mario Kart and the ever-popular Banjo Kazooie. And while I myself wasn’t really much of an avid TV show watcher during the decade of my growing up, a lot of TV shows debuted during the 90s era- some of them standing the test of time: Seinfeld, Friends, Buffy, Twin Peaks, The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, The X-Files, Fraiser, Full House, Spin City, Boy Meets World, Dawson’s Creek, My So Called Life, Freaks & Geeks, Party of Five, Charmed, Seachange and The Sopranos, are just some of the many, many TV shows that were delivered to our TV sets and screens during the decade, and though I haven’t seen any of these shows aforementioned (I may check out shows like Freaks & Geeks, and Party of Five soon), what I will say is this- there are a lot of lost gems of the 1990s that seem to be swept under the carpet, either because there’s newer, more ‘relevant’ stuff out there, or its from the 1990s and is now considered ‘old’, but for whatever reason; the 1990s and all the good things that they have to offer in terms of TV and movies, seem to be moved to the side right now in 2020, in favour of whatever is currently following the trends when it comes to executives choosing which shows to deem popular and which movies to promote. And it’s not just TV shows and movies where you actually realise that the 1990s was a good era- music from the 1990s was a great time to be alive, too: Madonna, Mariah Carey, Alanis Morissette, Backstreet Boys, Spice Girls, TLC, No Doubt, U2, The Cranberries, Green Day, Michael Jackson, Celine Dion, Boys II Men, Elton John, Aerosmith, LeAnn Rimes, Steven Curtis Chapman, Rebecca St. James, Newsboys, Shania Twain, Amy Grant, Michael W. Smith, Carman and DC Talk…well, lets just say that music from 20 or so years ago, are just as emotive, heartfelt, poignant, encouraging, challenging, unique and substantial (maybe even more so), than the music currently being played on the airwaves, in July 2020. Now let me add something else to this list. Above all the music, TV shows and movies I have represented here in this paragraph (so that we can reflect upon and admire and respect the 1990s for how great it actually was); there is one artist that often gets overlooked if we say the word ‘1990s’- even though they themselves have had quite an impact on this decade as everyone else. Known mostly for their chart-topping hit ‘Mmmbop’ way back in 1997 (and I’m not sure if there’s any other radio single that has reached the heights of that, since!); we are discussing this week, boy band, Hanson.

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REBECCA ST JAMES

I recently had the privilege of interviewing Aussie CCM/worship artist Rebecca St. James (sister of Joel and Luke Smallbone, who comprise for KING & COUNTRY!), via email, as she unveils her comeback single “Battle Is The Lord’s” and her upcoming new project Dawn. We discussed the album, her hardest and easiest songs to write, and what life has been like back in the music spotlight. Check out the interview below, and be sure to check out Rebecca’s new single on Apple Music or Spotify.

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