Lets Talk ‘content’ in our Gospel Songs
Classic music; I wouldn’t know if I’m right but I think I have my own definition of music that I call classic. It is that ageless kind of music, the kind that never really grows old, save for the fact that it was sung in the centuries of old. The kind that ages like fine wine; the older it gets, the tastier…the older the song, the more celebrated.
And guess why? It is thanks to the CONTENT. LYRICS, in this case. In fact, in my opinion the lyrics in a song were (and still are) the largest contributors to why the song was a hit and boom! The artiste became and remained the hotshot. I really do not think it was so much about the beats and stuff; at least in my observation, it was not. But hey, that’s just my opinion and it welcomes any edits. I am getting to the point.
So yes. The lyrics. For the perfect song, even if it was sung as an acapella, it would still make the hit. In fact, it would probably leave a larger impact. I mean…praise the Lord, impact is all we are about right? You see as the years have gone past, we have got more and more people realizing their gift to sing and actually taking up bold steps, some baby steps, to get to that “high” place but all for the glory of God I assume. (You just never know sometimes) by now you realize I’m referring to gospel musicians/artistes – again, I really feel the need to correct this. They’re not artists. They’re artistes. So everyday more gospel artistes are taking the stage in other words, the gospel music industry is steadily growing in Uganda.
Therefore I painfully want to bring us back to my purpose for this, that the growing industry has affected the content, we call it message, in gospel music. Call it competition. Maybe someone will throw a rock at me but people may not admit it that they’re struggling to get ahead. This obviously and most evidently happens in the secular part of the world too but I wouldn’t care less because there, anything goes; whereas here, there’s a reason why Christian music is called gospel music I believe. I am not sure if the artistes sit down to think about if what they sing sometimes qualifies. I am not saying here that they should compose lyrics out of bible verses (they can if they feel convicted) but sincerely speaking the music is getting emptier and emptier.
I think that gospel music should be life-changing music, in every way. Music that brings knowledge, wisdom, self-respect, restores peace, hope, faith, everything good and makes you see love through God’s eyes. Speaking about love, some time ago I was watching a Christian music show with my mother; the most part of this song was saying “I love you”…well, the whole chorus and even parts of the verses where it would be translated in Luganda to mix us up. My mother then made a statement; she said “it seems people these days do not have much to sing about.” Well, don’t scowl, don’t get this wrong. It is not that I entirely support her statement, because I know a couple of amazing love songs. Probably it is because she felt the music was missing something, to which I thoroughly agreed.
Gospel music should be the kind that drives a point home, an edifying point. Music that brings glory to the giver of talent. GOD. He is a perfectionist and you do not want to give Him less than He deserves when you know you could have done a better job. Before it slips my mind, I would like to appreciate the legit gospel artistes for the hard work they put in finding a perfect beat and lyrically nailing it to the last sound. That is hard work and they completely do their homework. Appreciation also goes out to those artistes that take time in the shadows to master their craft and come out to give the best as soon as they press play.
However the issue comes when some artistes depict a desperate mind to sell (forgive the harshness), when they spend sleepless nights to have the killer beat and then only spend 30 minutes patching words into it. That is emptiness. And truth of the matter is that they succeed in pulling the crowd but guess what; give that song just a number of months and it shall be forgotten and tucked away somewhere in a corner because it is not so catchy anymore.
This issue makes me realize that there are a lot of undiscipled Christians caught up in ministry, which is utterly dangerous. Every project should be an ultimate experience of fellowship with God, meditation also. After all, He is the author and finisher of our faith. Artistes included.