The Power of Music

Okay, well first off, just typing that title makes me start singing, ‘That’s the power of love…da–da–da-da…’ by none other than Huey Lewis and The News. Music is crazy like that. One little thing can trigger it. And there’s a reason we use music in worshiping God……because it’s powerful. It moves people. It can help us to feel emotions we wouldn’t normally feel, and take us to a place where being emotional in front of a person who literally died when we should have, is okay.

And I know you’ve probably all seen these, as they’ve been on the internet for years, but there’s not too many better ways to show the power of music. Ever watch a horror movie on mute? Or turn the sound off on ‘Goonies’ while turning the stereo system to Barber’s ‘Adagio for Strings’? Ya. I figured not. I’m quite sure this is just me in all my musical nerdiness (and just a side note, when it comes to music, the term ‘nerdiness’ is interchangeable with ‘glory’). But you’ve gotta try it! Go get ‘The Others’ soundtrack, and play it to ‘Anchorman.’ The bears get real scary. I’m so serious. So check these out. (Wow, I sound like a 10-year-old from 1981 when I say phrases like that.)

and then, of course:

You can’t tell me Julie Andrews isn’t really, really frightening in that. And when Peter Gabriel starts in with ‘Climbing up on solsbury hill…’, I honestly think freaky Jack Torrance would be a cool foster dad. (Oh, and by the way, if you’ve never seen these movies and want to know what they’re really about…I’m not endorsing either. Hey, gotta cover my bases. Some people get real offended when Dick Van Dyke pulls his pants down and walks like a penguin (an obvious slight towards homies and their gangs…oh, I’m sorry…I believe they like to be called home-shizzles and their crews, now), and there’s also horse racing, gambling, and calming kids down by giving them pharmaceuticals.)

Anyway, music is powerful. And for some odd reason, God has entrusted us with not only using it to bring Him glory through songs, but to bring Him glory by helping lead and perform it for other people to join in and give Him glory. So it is something to be taken seriously. I mean, one A minor when it should have been a C, and you might be turning ‘How Great’ into sounding like Mary Poppins is coming to take your kids. Ya. That was a horrible closing line. I’m tired. I want Edge. And obviously free-associating. But in all seriousness, let’s use this right.


16 thoughts on “The Power of Music

  1. good post!
    my keyboard/piano player, who has a firm grasp on music theory and sight reading, often flips song’s key sig. from major to minor or vice versa. (during practice, not when we’re actually leading)
    sometimes it produces cool results.
    and I agree wholeheartedly, that music is a powerful thing.

  2. We did a song at my church not too long ago where we took one chord in it and changed it to the relative minor and it made it a totally different, much more awesome song. In the original version, it was really vanilla, not much going on, but with the minor thrown in there and some dynamics, we rocked it.

    That said, I totally agree with you. Music has so much more power than people realize. It’s wonderful to go through the Bible and find all the places where music was played and people were affected by it.

  3. Don–nice. Sometimes that can be a cool experiment, and lead to some interesting possibilities. Which songs have sounded cool that way?

    Shane–thanks, bro. I think I’m on that same path! 🙂

    Colty–awesome! And great points on the Biblical backgrounds for music. Like when David played for Saul, it doesn’t mention anywhere that they were spiritual songs. Just music, and it soothed him. Good stuff!

  4. The power of music and editing – thanks for posting those!
    The Shining felt like a Cameron Crowe movie except I kept expecting something bad to happen.

  5. I’m the WL at my church. Someone asked me to do this nursing home gig (which is this afternoon @ 2:00pm). So, I asked her, “Hymns, choruses, or what?” She told me songs from the 40’s, 50’s, and 60’s, stuff that they could sing along with, like Zippedy-Do-Dah! I’ll probably throw in an “Amazing Grace” or “How Great Thou Art” to cover all bases.

    The music brings them back to good times, maybe when they were in their 20’s, healthy, and ready to take on the world. So, for a little while, all their “troubles seemed so far away”, to quote Sir Paul.

    Music changes things …

    And BTW, I’ll never watch Mary Poppins the same way again.

  6. Don–nice! I can think of a few hymns that ya, might sound pretty trippy flipped to minor. hehe

    Sal–lol Me too!

    Baggas–haha Every time I see it!

    Dan–lol Ya…even editing and Peter Gabriel playing in the background can’t make you think only niceness is going to come from Jack Nicholson’s scary face. haha

    Tony–wow. Amazing point, bro. That brings tears to my eyes. When my grandmother was going through alzheimer’s, the only things that could bring her back were human touch and swing music. Music is powerful. Thanks for that comment!

  7. My favorite part of those two trailers is how “Stay Awake” doesn’t even need to be changed to fit a creepy mood. It’s already minor (right?) and even the lyrics fit with the creepy motif.


  8. haha It might start on a minor, but I think it ends up hovering more around a major key. But I could be wrong. Is it sad that now I’m actually intrigued and thinking about figuring out ‘Stay Awake’ from Mary Poppins on the guitar? I’ll answer my own question. Yes. It is sad. In any event, they definitely added the droning minor and the scary sound effects! lol

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