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100 Greatest Songs of Christian Music: The Stories Behind the Music That Changed Our Lives Forever [Paperback]

By Tori Taff & Christa Farris (Editor)
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Item Number 41004  
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Item Specifications...

Pages   201
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 8.96" Width: 7.02" Height: 0.52"
Weight:   1.06 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Mar 1, 2006
Publisher   Thomas Nelson
ISBN  1591452104  
EAN  9781591452102  

Availability  0 units.

Item Description...
Contemporary culture is irresistibly drawn to lists of all sorts. Drawing on its unique history and extensive resources, CCM Magazine presents an entertaining and informative book brimming with intriguing details about the winning songs, plus a wealth of fascinating and fun sidebars that bring Christian music, its artists and lyrics alive to readers. Songs have been selected by an eclectic group of journalists, industry professionals and fans all representing the diversity of ages and musical styles embraced by Christian listeners. The book covers nearly 30 years of music history, making it of equal interest to early fans of Larry Norman and Sandi Patty as well as the latest fans of the Newsboys and P.O.D.

Publishers Description

100 great songs, 100 great stories.

Listen to the soundtrack of your life. What do you hear?

Which songs and artists have impacted your spirit and inspired your faith? This ultimate guide chronicles such songs―the top 100 songs of contemporary Christian music that have not only achieved commercial success, but have forever changed the lives of those who have listened. Selected by votes of thousands of "CCM Magazine" readers with the input of a top panel of Christian music insiders (including artists, executives, producers and songwriters), this list represents the best of the best.

Become part of the moment where divine inspiration meets sheer musical talent. From Rich Mullins, Amy Grand, dc talk, Steven Curtis Chapman and MercyMe to pioneers like Larry Norman, Keith Green and the Gaithers, watch how the musical expression of these artists' own lives resulted in the songs that forever changed yours.

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Product Categories
1Books > Bargain Books   [6433  similar products]
2Books > Subjects > Entertainment > Music > Musical Genres > Contemporary Christian   [430  similar products]
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Reviews - What do our customers think?
Interesting Stories but Flawed Ranking of Greatest Christian Hits  Jun 22, 2008
This well-intentioned book attempts to rank the greatest Contemporary Christian songs from the first four decades of the genre. Though some of the stories about how the songs were written are interesting, the major problem is the ranking totally favors songs from the 1990s and short-changes the much greater early Christian hits from the 1960s and 1970s.

The top 20 songs get the full multi-page treatment. Then songs 21 to 60 each get two pages, and the remainder just get one page each. Most of the older songs are left for the end, so some of the truly classic Christian hits only receive a couple paragraphs, while newer artists that will probably have little impact 40 years from now are given the full-blown treatment.

And there is way, way too much Amy Grant and Michael W. Smith in this book--Amy has the most songs on the list. The problem is she didn't write all of the great songs she is known for--and instead of focusing on the songwriter they focus on the performer, which decreases the credibility of the book. At one point the author states disbelief that even though Grant won four Dove Awards for Artist of the Year, "Oddly enough, Grant has never won the lesser title of Female Vocalist of the Year." It's not that odd, considering Grant is not known as a great singer. The entire book weaves Grant, Smith and Rich Mullins throughout, even in sections where they don't need to be mentioned.

There are some errors in the book, with a big one being that Barbra Streisand sang Bill Gaither's song "He Touched Me." (She sang a different song by that title.)

The voting system for the songs was also flawed, by giving half the weight to consumers (which will favor the more recent songs). And if they had 250 great songs to pick from (as stated in the text), why didn't they include 250 songs in the book?

One other problem--there is a companion CD set that is promoted in the book. If they couldn't get the rights to include the song on the CD set, does that mean it was not included in the book? It appears that the list may have had some commercial purposes and not been totally based on merit.
middle of the road  Nov 4, 2006
O.K., on the one hand, I really like the stories behind the songs that are included in the book. On the other hand, I think they chose the easy songs--as usual in the music industry, "greatest" translates as "the song that is the most popular or makes the most money." I would have liked the songs to have been picked on a bit more deep an aesthetic. Still, I enjoy the book, and find it inspiring. Best part of the book? The other contemporary artists who talk about the songs and what they mean to them. The most useless part? The inane lists throughout the book (ten OTHER songs about flying....). I'd still recommend reading the book, but don't get your expectations too high. No surprises in this one.
Superb But With Several Of The Greatest Songs Missing  Oct 23, 2006
This is a very interesting and fun to read book for any fan of Contemporary Christian Music. In addition to listing some of the greatest songs in Christian music, the book also contains a story to go with each song.

It was a pleasure to read this volume and compare my personal list of the top 100 to those by the authors. In many, if not most, cases, I tend to agree with the selections here. There are also several that I think should be included that are not. Part of that is undoubtedly a matter of preferring certain genres to others. In some cases, I have a hard time understanding why a few of the songs would make this top 100 list, but I'm sure that others would question my list as well.

The authors faced a formidable task in trying to come up with the top 100. There are so many great songs in Contemporary Christian Music that perhaps they should have compiled the top 250 or so.

Just coming up with the criteria for such a list is undoubtedly a great challenge. After debating possible approaches, Tori Taff and her collaborators came up with these requirements: The song had to originate with CCM 'songwriters/artists and initially (or simultaneously) be nationally distributed to the Christian market', and the song had to 'be distinctly faith-evident.' These guidelines prevented the inclusion of Christian leaning songs by primarily secular artists such as U2 and also songs by CCM artists that were not clearly 'faith-evident'. I think the guidelines are very sound for such a project.

After coming up with the guidelines, Ms. Taff and her helpers had to come up with a weighting method. They settled on basing it on 50% from Christian music industry professionals and 50% from a random sampling of 2500 subscribers to CCM Magazine. I think the mix of methods is a good one. I think that perhaps the sample size of Christian music fans might have been better if it were somewhat larger and perhaps not just limited to subscribers. Had they also included CCM readers who are not necessarily subscribers, perhaps it might have been a bit better. Nevertheless, that is really just speculation on my part.

There are many very interesting stories about how the songs came about. A couple that I found particularly interesting were 'Shine' by the Newsboys (page 34) and 'Dive' by Steven Curtis Chapman (page 179).

Regarding songs that I think should have been included, but were not, here are a few:

'God' by Rebecca St. James
'Yes, I Believe In God' and about 10 other songs by Rebecca St. James
'These Thousand Hills' and about 10 other songs by Third Day
'Blessed Be Your Name' by Tree 63
'King' by Tree 63
'I Need Thee Every Hour' by Jars of Clay
'God Will Lift Up Your Head' and about 10 other songs by Jars of Clay
'Strong Tower' by Kutless
'Indescribable' by Chris Tomlin
'I'm Not Ashamed' by Newsboys
'Entertaining Angels' and about 10 other songs by Newsboys
'I Still Believe' by Jeremy Camp
'Restored' and about 10 other songs by Jeremy Camp
'Colored People' by dcTalk
'Red Letters' and about 10 other songs by dcTalk
'Hands And Feet' by Audio Adrenaline
'Good To Be Alive' by Geoff Moore and The Distance
'Evidence of God' by Geoff Moore and The Distance
'Who Am I' and about 10 other songs by Casting Crowns
'Fly Away' by FFH
'What If' by Nichole Nordeman
'Free' by Ginny Owens
'We Live' by Superchick
'Oceans From The Rain' by Seventh Day Slumber
'Who Is Like Our God' by Skillet
'This Fragile Breath' by Todd Agnew
'Only Grace' by Matthew West

I could actually come up with quite a few others. Although I really enjoyed this book, I only gave if four stars due to some of the omissions listed above. I would like to see the authors do another book of the top 250 songs in Christian music. In spite of that, I would highly recommend this book to any fan of Contemporary Christian Music.

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