For this week’s Music Mondays post, my hope is that I will stretch and expand your horizons when it comes to Christian music.
It has been said, quite often, that Christian music just isn’t as good as mainstream music.
I think this is completely false, on pretty much every level.
The problem isn’t that Christian music isn’t as good, it’s that the vast majority of listeners only hear a very small segment of Christian music. There are many reasons for this, but the biggest one is Christian radio.
Like it or not, radio is still a major driver of what we hear, no matter what type of music we listen to. Record labels know this. That means that record labels will spend vast amounts of money to get their songs played on radio. That means that the songs you hear on the radio are chosen mostly by virtue of the fact that the record labels paid for them to be played. This is just the way it works, both in mainstream and Christian music.
Over time, the songs that get played the most are the songs we end up liking (because we don’t have much choice). In turn, those songs keep getting played. In turn, those artists receive priority when they release new songs. In turn, we basically get to listen to the same small cadre of artists and labels on the radio. That’s life.
Thing is, that small segment of music that we hear on the radio, as popular as it is, isn’t representative of all the music that is available. Perhaps nowhere is this more true than in Christian music.
Christian radio tends to play the same 12 or so artists at any given time, with the occasional newcomer thrown in for good measure. That’s fine. As I’ve already mentioned, I get it.
If you’ve only heard that group of 12 or so artists, you could make the false assumption that ALL Christian music sounds like the music they make.
There is a vast universe of excellent Christian music out there, from a wide-variety of genres, you just have to search for it. It won’t come to you.
This week, I want to share with you a recent discovery I made of some excellent Christian music that I know you won’t hear on your local Christian radio station
The Royal Royal
I encountered The Royal Royal’s music on the DJ iTunes Christian Music station on iTunes Radio. The nice thing about iTunes radio is that it is a discovery engine. By that, I mean that the iTunes radio stations are likely to introduce you to artists you’ve never heard before. The first song I heard by The Royal Royal was “Light a Fire.” I knew that I had to hear more after that.
I went and listened to their album, “The Return of the King,” on iTunes and immediately bought it. I’ve been playing it pretty much non-stop since then.
Their music is a perfect example of excellent Christian music that is virtually unknown to the larger audience. You probably won’t hear them on Christian radio, but not because they aren’t good enough, but simply because they can’t make it past the gatekeepers. That’s a shame.
I’m glad I found them, and I hope you enjoy their music as much as I do. If you do, consider making a conscious effort to seek out new Christian music wherever you can find it, even if it isn’t your local Christian radio station.
The Royal Royal’s Music
Lyric Video for “Real Strength”
“The Return of the King” Album Preview