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Rake Thoughts

Hey readers, did that Michael W. Smith movie, The Second Chance, make it to  a multiplex near you before the DVD hit stores? You'd have it over me that way then. Here's hoping the next flick Steve Taylor directs makes it to a wider number of big screens before the home versions drop.
++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++What is the sales threshold for a "deluxe edition" of a CD to be issued by a Christian market label? I've enjoyed the latest by Mae and  Barlow Girl (and Aly & AJ, though they orient themselves more to the general market) plenty. I understand the music biz is in a world of hurt and state of flux. Still, were I the kind of fan who has to buy more of his Christian label CD's. I wonder how much I'd resent the increasing possibility that I might have to buy the same music twice to get the extra goodies.
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Is it worse that a friend at my church is marrying a Mormon or that the Joseph Smith acolyte in question owns every Jessica Simpson album? 
Yes, the former situation is worse, but but by how much?...
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Could there be room on U.S. Christian radio for a show delightfully diverse as my friend George Luke's weekly hour-long journey through believers' music the globe over, World Beat (Saturdays on England's United Christian Broadcasting, www.UCB.co.uk)? How many of you reading this would listen to a show featuring music by saints from Africa, Eurpoe, South America and Native (North) Americans such as the underrated Bill Miller?
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Are there any Christian (market) rock-and music generally-critics whose writings could make for a cogent, insightful athology of writing that connects the artistry being critiqued with philosophical, sociological and, in the Christian's case, thellogical/doctrinal thought in the same way writings by Robert Christgau, Dave Marsh, Richard Meltzer (my first rock critic hero!), the late Lester Bangs and another friend of mine, Frank Kogan (his Real Punks Don't Wear White from The University of Georgia Press, www.UGAPress.org, is a monument to a seriously curious-in a complimentary sense of the word-mind) have been? 
Think on it, voracious readers of Christian music criticsm.
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How seriously should Samuel L. Jackson, among others, be taken reading Scripture as a contributor to The Bible Experience audio New Testament after he's contributed his disgust with mother(bleep!)ing snakes on a mother(bleep!)ing plane, however briefly, to the pop culture lexicon? 
I'm still looking forward to hearing Jackson read the Word, all the same. And who knows what seed it planted or fertilized in the guy, right?
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Just how many girls are wanting nose piercings after seeing Krystal Myers sporting hers on the cover of her latest longplayers?  And how many of those girls' parents are having to tell their daughters that Christian market musicians aren't necessarily role models for every aspect of life?
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Was Riki Michelle a trendsetter for Addie Camp by being a godly kinda' alt' rock redhead who married within the cCm busines? Or are both just godly kinda' alt' rock redheads who married within the cCm business at different times (one of them twice) with differing degrees of commercial appeal? 
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Speaking of Mrs. Camp, doesn't her husband, Jeremy, look much better without a soul patch? Given TobyMac's experimentation with the same facial hair configuration, much less the 'patch on Garth Brooks' misbegotten Chris Gaines alter ego (his entire lone album having been written by cCm songsmiths), maybe it should be forsaken altogether. At least by Euromerican guys..
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And speaking of facial hair, does David Bazan purposefully use profanity in his songs to distance himself from cCm while claiming Christ to the Christian press he deems hip enough to grant interviews? Love the guy's voice and deft musical character sketches though I do, that kind of selective inconsistency gets in my craw. And keeps me from putting much of his music in the CD changer at my church's coffeehouse (just as he would like?).

And are that cute, onetime Christian market couple Viva Voce going the same route? 
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Is it ironic or merely unexpected that Miley Cyrus's best song on her __Hannah Montanna__ soundtrack is the duet with her TV and real-life dad, Billy Ray? And per her pops' former chartbusting success, the song sounds as much like country radio fodder as any given Carrie Underwood single. 

Furthermore about the same album, doesn't Everlife's contribution bode well for their January '07 Walt Disney Records debut? 
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The above thoughts remind me to ask: what has become of Jump5?
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It's been a while since I've seen him there, but since Casey Kasem has made at least one appearance on a TBN, does that mean he's Christian now? If so, cool! Maybe in the afterlife he and I can discuss how he helped to get me addicted to weekend radio countdown shows.

But, considering how at least one prominent Trinity Broadcasting host has boasted of nabbing an interview with Donald Trump (and, from my understanding, not about his salvation or lack thereof) on her show, here's hoping the appearance of my favorite Lebanese-American, long-distance dedication-reading DJ wasn't in a similarly kraven vein.
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Will the often experimental, sometimes less overtly evangelically-lyriced music by believers on such labels as Asthmatic Kitty, Sounds Familyre and Sounds Are Active ever find widespread distribution in Christian bookshops and among the customers who shop there regularly? Or might it be better suited for those with ears that hear in the general market communities where they're getting the critical kudos without conforming to the dictates of the stodgier elements of the cCm/evangelical church subculture? 
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On the subject of Asthmatic Kitty Records, wasn't Dr. Demento's playing of Sufjan Stevens' song about serial killing homosexual clown John Wayne Gacy, Jr. during the good doc's recent segment on songs about bad guys a downer of sorts? A sublime one that I'm glad he played, but a downer all the same, yes?
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Were you, like I was, taken aback by some pundits' commentary that Ted Haggard's sex & drugs scandal would mess with the mid-term elections? One weak pastor's fall really shouldn't change anyone's stance on issues such as embryonic stem cell research & cloning and same-sex marriage, should it? 
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In another "how does THAT follow?!" scenario, could someone explain to me how a politically liberal former Assembly of God attending friend of mine started attending her nearest Unitarian-Universalist congregation because of the (entirely justifiable, methinks) Republican and  Christian hue and cry over the beyond-unfortunate case of Terry Schiavo?
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And to end on a happier note...
Has anyone else noticed the boomlet in salvations and returns to the Lord by people in  "adult" entertainment? Especially heartnening are the stories of former porn actress Crissy Moran (look up her MySpace blog for some compelling stories) and the former striptease dancers who lead up JC's Girls (www.JCsGirls.com, see my review of their video elsewhere in this esteemed webzine).
 
Jamie Lee Rake,
Your Questioner of the (Sub-)Cultural Status Quo
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

 
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