Music is a really helpful way to learn important truths about God, to praise Him and to cry to Him in our need. Music helps us to express ourselves and to connect on a deeper level than we can with words.
As a child it was a key way that I learned verses from the Bible that I still know today. I also learned truths about God through Christian story and song tapes, a bit like mini child-friendly musicals.
As an adult, Christian music makes up the vast majority of what I listen to, there are various artists and styles I like and different types of music for different moods, whether I need encouragement, am feeling anxious, and happy and full of praise. Christian music is a brilliant way of connecting with God.
There are many singers and composers of modern Christian music for adults, teens and kids available on Spotify, YouTube and as CDs or DVDs. Below are some ideas to get you started, have a browse and see what style suits you.
Katie Croft (Children's Work Coordinator)
Music for Adults
The range of styles and artists for Christian music is huge and not all are created equal. As you search through Spotify/YouTube etc. be discerning as to whether the song is teaching you something about God, or focusing mainly on "me".
Amongst the styles you will find what I have called "congregational" vs "non-congregational" music. By that I mean, songs that you would often hear sung in church and songs that are great to listen to and sing along at home but might not quite work for a whole church to try and sing together.
A good place to start is the Getty's (husband and wife team Keith and Kristyn) who are Irish, but now based in Nashville. And also the English artist Stuart Townend who has often co-composed with Keith. We sing quite a few of their songs already in church. Their most famous co-written song is "In Christ Alone". Here are the Getty's singing that song.
Sovereign Grace music are another group producing songs that really point us to God. Here's one Dave has played a couple of times during our lockdown services.
Cityalight is another group that have done some beautiful congregational songs and are worth a listen.
Lou Fellingham is a female artist with a slightly different, more contemporary style to the Getty's and Townend. She does a mix of congregational and non-congregational songs.
Word Alive is a group that organise a Christian conference every year and often produce an album of the live worship from the conference. This will be a mix of different songs and you can sing along with a whole congregation. Check out their website or find them on Spotify.
In addition there are many Christian artists who don't write for congregational singing and who write in many styles. A couple of my personal favourites are Casting Crowns and Mercy Me .
Music for Kids
Doug Horley is a great Christian kids artist who often incorporates actions into his music. We sing some of his songs during the Sunday School sessions at church.
Awesome Cutlery are another great band and we already sing their song "Light and a Hammer" and some of you may know "A Long, Long, Long, Long Time Ago". We are going to be introducing some more of their songs into our kids work. You can buy their CDs from 10ofThose.com. Here's a taster.
Emu Music have produced a fun album called "The King, The Snake and the Promise" that includes songs from Genesis to Jesus. My kids liked the fun voice in this one!
Seeds Family Worship are a group that specialise in putting Bible verses to music. Here's a sample of their music.
Ian Smale (Ishmael) is another artist who specialises in putting Bible verses to music. It's thanks to him that I can recite so many! We use his cartoon karaoke in Sunday School and the kids love it!
Colin Buchanan is an Australian artist who does some fun songs. Here's one of his quieter ones that I particularly like.
Finally, if anyone is interested in the story/song style recordings that I grew up with you can find them here. Despite their age the songs are still lively and younger kids will enjoy them. They be can listened to as story tapes at bedtime, they follow the story of a group of children and a singing songbook. Each album is a different adventure with challenges to think about how we treat others, how we trust God etc.