Idol Chatter

Beliefnet’s Dena Ross has a current story and gallery up, a feature on the Christian music artists.

“According to Nielsen SoundScan, the Christian/gospel category was one of only four genres that saw its overall album sales grow last year,” she writes, “proving that many artists of faith not only have an impact on other Christians, but also on music lovers everywhere.”

You may have heard of Jars O’ Clay, CeCe Winans, Rebecca St. James, Third Day and Switchfoot, although Switchfoot would prefer you don’t think of them as a “Christian” band. You will keep hearing of Yolanda Adams, Israel and New Breed, Kirk Franklin, David Crowder Band, Flyleaf, as well as MercyMe “my wife’s favorite concert last year” and Casting Crowns, who just put on a great show to raise money for kids in Cincinnati. Somehow Michael W. Smith and Amy Grant have stayed on the list, which I should be glad about since I still listen to them!

In the wake of the recent Scientology controversy in England and the frequent clips of John Travolta and Tom Cruise in association with the movement, it got me to wondering: Who are the celebrities faces of Christianity? If the Scientologists get Cruise and Travolta–and for that matter if the Mormons get Mitt Romney and the Buddhists get Richard Gere–who do we get?

I wonder if our younger generations can be some confused as if there “are no Christian celebs” since so few of them are widely associated with their Christian faith in the media? I know there are some–they just don’t show up as readily and often in association with the faith as do those associated with these smaller movements.

While pondering that, be reminded that Dena’s feature includes music as well, so I hope you’ll check out these great artists and their work, and be inspired by authentic expressions of faith and inspiration, rather than just the celebrity attachments that we’ve come to know too well.

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