Having a baby causes you to rethink things you used to think were irrelevant. I imagine all parents find themselves being confronted with words and actions they always have done without a second thought which now seem questionable with a child in the house.
Right now, I am thinking about the music we listen to.
For the last few years, due to Emily’s influence, I have listened to country. Well, usually when I am in the car alone I listen to ESPN radio or political talk on the Big Talker. But when the radio in our bedroom comes on in the morning, it is country. I never liked country much before, but I admit it has grown on me.
The thing that has troubled Emily and I is that a lot of country songs glorify the consumption of alcohol. At times it seems like every song is about drinking: Tequila Makes Her Clothes Fall Off, One More Drinking Song, Ten Rounds with Jose Cuervo, etc. Along with that, many songs have bad language in them. Not f-bombs, but the kind of language I don’t think I want my kid to be hearing and repeating.
I am torn because I have come to enjoy country music. There are many songs that are fun, even thoughtful and have good messages. And I do get it, that is kind of the point of country. The songs are about all the things Americans love: God, alcohol, America and a little good old fashioned cussing.
The alternative seems to be the contemporary Christian station. I used to listen to Christian music a lot. Back in high school when I got serious about my faith, finding Christian music was incredibly encouraging. Over time I lost interest in Christian music (other than Caedmon’s Call and Jars of Clay). Actually, in my effort to be a “cool” Christian I started listening to U2 and Coldplay.
When I have listened to the Christian station in recent years it just seems like one long church service, with most of the songs on the radio being the same ones we sing in church! Do not get me wrong, I enjoy listening to praise and worship songs. The last few days listening to the Christian station has led to me having “Here is Our King” in my head all day, which is certainly a step above “Red Solo Cup” (which may be the stupidest song ever written). Yet the music played on Christian radio is too filtered and sugary. There are not many songs about the struggles of life, questioning God, dealing with issues. The sorts of things one finds in scripture.
Maybe the problem is my perception.
Maybe I should go back to the music of my even younger days, the alternative rock of the early nineties! Pearl Jam, Nirvana, Live…(Bart Simpson: “Making teenagers depressed is like shooting fish in a barrel.”)
At any rate, I do have a few questions.
Why can’t a “Christian” station play a song by Rodney Atkins, a country singer, about how he wants to be a good example for his kid?
Why can’t a “Christian” station play a song by U2 if it is a great song with a true theme?
What kind of music do other parents listen to? Am I making a mountain out of a mole hill?
I suppose in a year or two the whole issue will be a moot point anyway as Junia will want to listen to kids music all the time!