New Music Monday…3 days early, or 4 days late – you decide!

August 17, 2007

In an attempt to keep our youth worship ‘cutting edge’ and relevant I have our youth musicians & vocalists, and those connected with the various musical aspects of our youth environments, suggest new songs and, combining it with a few picks of my own, have all involved vote on which ‘new’ (sometimes, as is the case with this list, ‘new to us’) songs we will introduce over the next 4 – 6 months. Well, the results are in, and if you’re a worship leader and not familiar with these songs, I suggest you open up your iTunes and CCLI’s SongSelect and start downloading tunes and chord charts immediately! Here they are, in order of popularity…

1. “Saving Grace” – Steve Jones/Vineyard Music
Though this is far and above one of Cyle & I’s favorite new songs I was very surprised at how it resonated with the youth – out of the 13 people who voted, over half listed it as their #1 pick, and all but 2 included it in their top 5. I first heard “Saving Grace” in ’05 when a bit mellower version appeared as the title track of Club Vineyard #57, and I loved it immediately. I also have a great respect for Steve Jones, as he is not only a Vineyard worship leader and songwriter (he also penned one of my other newer Vineyard favorites – “Free“), but also fronts the more mainstream rock band Autumn in Repair – I’ve always said that the flip-side of the worship coin is evangelism, and I love it when God’s worshipers are active planting seeds of the Gospel out in the world. Anyway – we’ve already rehearsed this one, and it’s SMOKIN’! Great, but simple, lyrics – easy to play (though I suggest using a capo if you’re leading from an acoustic) – honest – and best of all, very singable!

2. “Lead me to the Cross” – Brook Fraser/Hillsong United
I do love a cross-centered song that is also intimate in nature, and that is what we have here. This is probably the only song feasible for corporate worship from the latest Hillsong United release (though “Break Free” would sure make one powerful ‘walk-in’ song), but it sure is a beauty. What really brings the song to a head is the intense guitar lead immediately following the first verse – it nearly takes my breath away every time I hear it.

3. “Salt & Light” – Jan L’Ecuyer
Thought “Salt & Light” is an older song, my wife & I’s band, Saint Lewis, debuted it a few months ago at the ENCOUNTER night of worship event, and it went over very well. So well, in fact, that a few of our Inside Out musicians requested that it be considered. Jan L’Ecuyer & her husband serve as the Worship Pastors at the Wheeling Vineyard – she has been the featured leader on a number of Vineyard, Integrity, & Spring Hill releases.

4. “All because of Jesus” – Steve Fee
Steve Fee is a ‘rising star’ of sorts due to his solid songwriting and excellent guitar work. As one of the worship leaders at NorthPoint Church in Atlanta, Steve has occasionally appeared on various Passion releases, but really ‘shines’ (a veiled pun for Steve’s fans) on his newest release Burn for You, which is slated to be remixed and released later this year by Sixstep, I do believe. This tune in particular is a driving, energetic, youthful U2-esque praise song. I like. I only hope we can do it justice!

5. “Fire Fall Down” – Hillsong United
Though this is not a ‘brand new’ song, it is ‘new to us’ – from United We Stand – this is a passionate plea for the Holy Spirit’s renewal and cleansing. I’m very interested in seeing how this one is received by the larger body of our youth, but it is a very powerful song.

The ‘honorable mentions’, which also may get thrown into the mix – possibly as special music, or a new song if one particularly fits the theme one week – are:
Light the Fire Again” – Brian Doerksen (the newly recorded version ROCKS!)
Let Your Kingdom Come” – Sovereign Grace Music (tied with Doerksen in votes, and one of my personal favorites)
Who is Like You” – Glory Revealed (Mac Powell personally introduced this one to us this Summer, and a number of our youth took to it – I suspect, with a little ‘arranging’, we’ll be singing this sometime within the years.

…And, simply by ‘executive decision’ we WILL DO “Break Free” as walk-in music eventually! Be warned!

Fellow worship leaders – especially those working with youth or college aged musicians – be encouraged to check these songs out.
So, what are some you songs that you’ve introduced to your congregation, and how well were they received? I’d love to hear from you…

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5 Responses to “New Music Monday…3 days early, or 4 days late – you decide!”

  1. arhror said

    Thanks for the tip

  2. I LOVE “Lead Me To The Cross”…but I’m way behind on the other stuff. I really only just started to really enjoy “Sweetly Broken”, one y’all have done for quite awhile now! I’ll try to catch up.

    Anyway, a new Crowder song we are digging is “Oh The Glory Of It All”. Check it out, if you haven’t already.

  3. saintlewis said

    Is that the one I’ve been catching recently on the radio from his forth-coming c.d.? I generally love most things ‘Crowder’. Thanks for the tip!

  4. klampert said

    I have been working on break free acoustic style …gonna try to do it

  5. saintlewis said

    You need to record that! I’d love to hear it!

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