Release Date: March 4th 2016
Reviewed by: Jonathan Andre
Yancy– Kidmin Worship Vol 4: Popular Worship Songs (iTunes/Amazon mp3)
- We Believe
- Good, Good Father
- There is Power
- Praise the King
‘…one of my greatest passions is providing resources to help a children’s ministry worker help their kids become the worshippers God created them to be. I pray kids will clap, jump, sing, and lift their hands in worship and awe of the God we serve…all while helping kids fall in love with Jesus and find their hiding place in His presence…’ Yancy has been in the ministry of creating worship songs for children for quite a number of years, with albums like Roots for the Journey, Little Praise Party and Jesus Music Box all delivering songs that children can sing along to in their moments of worship time during any given week, either by themselves or with their families. While I myself am way past that age of being the target audience for these songs that Yancy primarily creates and records, I nevertheless still appreciate and respect the work that Yancy does on a day-to-day basis. And now with this new ministry of Kidmin Worship, a resource brand whose goal it is to provide products for primary school kids to worship in a manner that is freeing, fun-filled and family orientated; Yancy has given us 5 songs in her fourth volume of the series, this time presenting to us 5 popular worship songs delivered in an easy-to-remember way, with less electric guitars and much more light electronics and gang children vocals, as we see the same songs we know and love as adults, transformed in a way that is more accessible to children as well. While I myself enjoy the originally recorded tracks compared to these offerings Yancy released earlier in March 2016, I am still proud of the EP Yancy created, as these songs could hopefully encourage children to seek more after the Lord in an innovative and encouraging way. From songs like the Lincoln Brewster penned “There is Power” to the newly recorded “Praise the King”; this is an EP certain to be enjoyed by children, and hopefully us adults who may still have a little bit of children in us yet.
Quite possibly the song that has captured and captivated millions of listeners of Christian music throughout the last year or so, “Good Good Father” is a definite standout on the EP, as Yancy is the latest artist to cover this track amongst many others. Originally written and recorded by indie worship group Housefires; we have seen and heard versions from Chris Tomlin, Zealand Worship, Big Daddy Weave, Casting Crowns and most recently Passion (Kristian Stanfill), all of whom have delivered their own unique versions of a song that I reckon will become a timeless worship classic (similar to other songs like “Open the Eyes of My Heart”, “Here I Am to Worship” and “Blessed Be Your Name” to name a few). Enter in Yancy, who presents the song, in a similar style to that of Zealand Worship- fast paced, yet never losing the heart and charisma that the song initially embodies. What we are reminded through this song is the comfort, that ‘…You’re a good good father, it’s who You are…and I’m loved by You…’ While not that heavy on the electrics, to present a melody that is accessible, stylistically and musically, to kids as well as adults, “Good, Good Father” is a definite frontrunner to win some award this year, and Yancy’s cover further highlights the well acclaim that has been esteemed upon this song as a whole. A great inclusion on this EP, Yancy ought to be proud, with her rendition of the track, alongside that of Zealand Worship, become one of my favourite versions of the song ever!
Throughout the rest of the EP, Yancy brings to us songs that have been chart-topping the radio over the last few years, and songs that can be easily sung in the home as well as on a Sunday morning church service. “There is Power”, the recent radio hit by Lincoln Brewster, that speaks about how there is power when we speak the name of Jesus out in our situations and circumstances, the song is presented with an electronic glow, as Yancy declares out the truth of how powerful the name of Jesus really is, making this song written by Lincoln one that has been an anthem of mine over the last few years. “We Believe” continues this anthemic feel with Yancy delivering the Travis Ryan penned Newsboys famous melody, full of lyrical richness and biblical truth, as this song based off the Nicene Creed is one that ought to be declared with passion and belief upon belief, as we see a song that is sung out of a deep seated knowledge of what we’re believing, and whether we really believe the words we’re singing or not.
“Forever”, the Kari Jobe song that is by far one of my favourites from Kari ever, hardly differs from the original song, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Stability and similarity can work in any song’s favour, which is exactly true of “Forever”. The powerful chorus sums up the song perfectly, that ‘…forever He is glorified, forever He is lifted high, forever He is risen, He is alive…’ and our worship is in light of that fact. “Praise the King”, the song that I was unfamiliar with (but now know that this song was originally from CentricWorship); is by far the song that has a lot of autotune, electronic keyboards, Gameboy sounds, and a whole lot of catchy looping percussion; as Yancy brings to the fore the theme of us praising the King with all abandon, because of the reason behind it all, that ‘…Jesus is alive, praise the King, He is risen, praise the King, He’s alive…’ While at times the song can seem lyrically repetitive; the song still presents biblical truth, something that makes this EP well worth it if you are looking for songs rich in theology and biblical grounding!
While this album is firmly focused on giving pre-teens and primary school kids a grounding in worship music, I’m sure anyone who has enjoyed worship music over the years can appreciate the music on this album, no matter how kid-friendly the songs can be. And while Yancy may never be as popular as other mainstream worship artists like Chris Tomlin, Kristian Stanfill, Crowder, Jesus Culture or Bethel Music, her ministry is just as important, as evidenced through the amount of children’s music she has released over the last few years. These five songs continue to remind us that the impact of the song goes far beyond the artist singing it, as songs like “Good, Good Father” and “There is Power” continue to become some of my favourite songs I’ve heard within the last few years. Kudos to Yancy and her music recently, here’s to another album a la Roots for the Journey in the near future!
3 songs to listen to: We Believe, There is Power, Good, Good Father
RIYL: Audrey Assad, Chris Tomlin, Tim Hughes, Hillsong UNITED