Friday, January 8, 2016

New Year, New #NightBeatniks

2016 (aka #PlatVnyl7) is underway. As is customary things take a little while to get up to speed after the Christmas Music Rush. Fine with us, as it gives us time to get our end of year posts and 1rst Quarter wrap finished. For those of you who are new here who are asking "First Quarter 2016 Wrap? But This is The First Quarter of 2016." Maybe on your calendar, but we are operating here on the Platinum Vinyl Award Calendar.  That calendar began on October 1 of 2015 and will continue until September 30 of this year.

Back in College in the Mid 1980's I was a Disc Jockey or DJ. We played Vinyl Records on Turntables. The 45 (a vinyl disc about the size of a CD that had 2 songs on it, one on each side) was slowly disappearing and the 33 or Album would soon be replaced by the CD. An uninformed person once said that the 8 Track Tape Replaced the Vinyl Album. No. I was there. The 8 track was a blip on the Musical Timeline. While the Cassette Tape and the 8-Track Were Prone to the same malady ("eating of the tapes"), the cassette could simply, in most cases, be rewound into the casing and played without effort many more times. The 8-Track, however, no. Probably because of the "eating malady" the Cassette never replaced the 33RPM Vinyl but coexisted alongside it. It did have the benefit of portability however,especially after the introduction of the Sony Walkman in 1980. By the end of the Decade the CD was on its way to prominence. It had portability with the size of a 45, and Durability, and could not be eaten. It still has not been overtaken. What about the mp3, you ask. Yes it has portability, but it can be accidentally or otherwise deleted. The CD is permanent.

Musically speaking the 80's were the Golden Age of Music, Christian or Otherwise. There was this little group out of Ireland released an album entitled Boy in 1980. You might have heard of them. U2 anyone? Bono and several other members of the band are Born Again Christians so the band was among the first Crossover acts to become popular in the Christian College Radio crowd. And that really began a crossover trend both ways. We gave the mainstream the likes of Amy Grant and Switchfoot, and you gave us U2, Evanescence and Creed. U2 and Creed managed to stay in the good graces of CCM throughout their careers, and Evanescence got kicked out of the kingdom for swearing during an interview. Still, both Creed and Evanescence managed to latch on to the "Hillsong Effect". By that I mean that they have birthed a horde of imitators, much like Hillsong Church created a horde of "Zschechies" with all these blonde female worship leaders adopting the dress and hairstyle of Darlene Zschech. Modern Worship itself as a genre is still trying to break free from a Hillsong Sound where they all sound alike. Creed gave us Jeremy Camp and Kutless, among others, and Evanescence gave us Eowyn to start.

Oh, one final thing. My radio show in college was called The Night Beat. When looking for a nickname for my fans I coined Night Beatniks. Now the stereotypical Beatnik loved Poetry and Jazz. Now I like my poetry classical (Iambic Pentameter and Rhyme) but I would be very happy in a Jazz Club. As we move into the year and the nominations for #PlatVnyl6 are announced you shouldn't be surprised if you see a few artists that most folks wouldn't consider "Christian". We honor a lot of good music that a Christian (and anyone else) should like. Stay tuned. Until next time, I am Awaiting Your Reply.