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Jesus Is Just Alright With Me

Dr. Spin gets spiritual.

by Dr. Spin
October 6, 2003

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Jesus Is Just Alright With Me_Dr. Spin-Dr. Spin gets spiritual Where can I find information on a TV show called “Drumbeat” that ended in 1959?

Dear Nameless,

I have never heard of “Drumbeat” until your question. 1959 is a little early for me, but I did a little research on the internet, which is probably what you should do, if you haven’t already.

What I can tell you about “Drumbeat” is that it was a show for the BBC in May of 1959 and ran for six months. It was a launching place for the careers of Adam Faith and John Barry. But since you’ve heard of the show, you probably already know this. My advice would be to contact the various peoples that run the “tribute” websites on the net. Perhaps they can provide you with more of the information you’re looking for. My simple searches have not found any videos available from this series.

Dear Dr. Spin,
What is your take on contemporary Christian rock artists like DC Talk and Newsboys? Are you aware of these groups and what do you think of them musically, artistically, spiritually?

a Jesus freak

Dear Freak,

Yes, I am aware of some, but not all, contemporary Christian rock artists. Though I am not a big fan of DC Talk or Newsboys, there are quite a few Christian artists I do enjoy, in fact, one of my favorite bands, Christian or secular, is the 77’s. I especially like their earlier albums which tend to go out of print off and on, but even their most recent efforts are still good. I also like Jars of Clay, Kim Hill, and a new favorite, Salvador. These are the Christian bands I like musically, and I guess, artistically (usually, these traits go hand in hand).

Spirituality, especially with Christian music, is a completely different aspect. Does (as a Christian) listening to these bands bring me closer to God? Certainly listening to Christian music (providing lyrically the song is theologically sound) brings me closer to God than listening to non-Christian music. But am I listening to these bands as entertainment, or a form of worship? I guess that depends on your frame of mind when listening. Obviously music, Christian or otherwise, must appeal to the listener for its message to get across.

DC Talk and the Newsboys are good contemporary bands, and while they may not appeal to me as much as some of the other bands I mentioned, I can see why someone would like them. It is good that contemporary Christian music has “evolved” to a point where it can accept all forms of contemporary music. It seems to me there was a time when all Christian “contemporary” music sounded like Sandy Patti or the Bill Gaither Trio, which was great for my parents. Now people realize that Christian Rock is not an oxymoron, and that many Christian bands are actually quite good.

Dear Doctor.

I live in Sweden so I don't know if you can relate to this issue. If can though, I'd be most grateful for an answer. The question: Smokie is a band with one semi-hit (living next door to Alice). How come they can release not less than 3 greatest hit's albums and even one ten record box? Doesn't make any sense does it?


Dear Jacob,

You mean people in Sweden read this column? This column??

I barely understand the American music industry, so I have no idea how the Swedish music industry works. Suffice to say I have never heard of Smokie, so I don’t know how they managed to generate 3 greatest hits albums and a ten record box set. Perhaps they are more popular in the rest of Europe than you or I realize. I blame the French.

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Mike O'Brien from CT writes:
November 7, 2003

Thanks for the comments on contemporary Christian music. I mentioned DC Talk and Newsboys (my 10-yr-old son's favorite) only because I think they're among the most well-known. Turns out you didn't need schooling!

I'm going to check out Salvador now on your recommendation.

Two more favorites I didn't mention and you probably know are Charlie Peacock and Randy Stonehill, who have been putting out good stuff for years - also the late Mark Heard is worth investigating. I saw Kim Hill live years ago and she was quite good.

I laughed out loud at the Sandy Patti/Gaither comment - I was not a believer then so didn't have to suffer through it! When my son's a bit older, I'll take him again to the Creation campout/music festival in central Pa.

Interesting thoughts on why one listens to this music (to enjoy a good song, to worship, etc.) The debate will go on until the Lord returns about this. I tend to lean toward artists that, lyrically, are not ashamed of expressing their faith. Say what you will about the Newsboys, but they wear it proudly on their sleeves. Their recent praise CD is worth a listen.

I'm involved as a drummer and vocalist at my Baptist church (which also has Swedish roots!).

God's peace,


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