Friday, November 27, 2009

What is Contemporary Music?

One of the things I’ve found intruiguing in the nomenclature that’s used to describe the appropriation of popular forms in the church is: ‘contemporary worship’.   And the reason I balk at that is because the 20th century is one of the most deadly and tragic centuries in history.  The writer who probably captures the 20th century best is somebody like Alexander Solzhenitsyn and the aforementioned examples of Part and Gorecki - that’s contemporary music!  And yet the idea that contemporary Christian music is only of a particular form, I find it shows a lack of appreciation for what the contemporary really is.  What is the nature of our times?  If we step back and say, ‘What is the nature of our times?  What kinds of music are appropriate for the nature of our times? …not just the nature of show business or the nature of entertainment in the world.  And that’s where I think that the Church has to be honest about the age that we’re living in.  The Church only sees the ‘glitzy’ side of the age that we’re living in and say that’s what we have resonance with rather than recognize the tragedies of the age as well. 

- Ken Myers, discussing his book, All God's Children in Blue Suede Shoes
Guernica by Pablo Picasso

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