Today, you get a little peek into my life. Hopefully you continue to read the blog afterward.
For those of you who don’t know me personally, I am a HUGE 80’s music guy. I mean...huge. Big hair, spandex, ripping guitars and pounding drums, I love it all. Now yes, I love music in general, but the 80’s genre has always had a very special place in my heart for a very special reason. It was when I heard my first 80’s song that I truly began to appreciate music. It was a song from a particular band that paved the way for most Christian artist we know today. Most, if not all Christian rock bands today are riding the wave that these guys started. It was this band that gave me the appreciation for music I have today. It all started with them. I am of course, talking about the band known as Petra.
I was 12, shuffling through an old box I found in my parent's attic. It was dusty and full of a bunch of stuff I considered to be just junk. I was just about to put the box aside when my eyes landed on something I had never seen before. I reached into the box and pulled out a cassette tape (yes, I know what a cassette tape is) and on the cover were five dudes in tight jeans and long hair. It was the This Means War album from 1987. Wondering what this was doing in my parent's box I popped the tape into the player and hit play. The first song to hit my ears was "All The King's Horses." It was unlike anything I had ever heard before. John Schlitt’s vocals hitting notes I didn’t know were possible. Hartman’s guitar wailing perfectly with each note. John Lawry and his portable keyboard, giving the song its majestic anthem. Mark Kelly (later replaced by Ronny Cates) doing his thing on the bass. And finally, what my ears first noticed were the heavy, incredible drum beats of none other than Louie Weaver. It was then I knew, I wanted to play the drums.
Now, being the naive child that I was, I was conditioned to believe that this music was plain evil. Dudes didn’t wear tight jeans and they most certainly never had long hair. I was wondering what something like this was doing in a box belonging to my parents. Very worried I brought the cassette tape to my mom. She looked at the tape, then looked at me. A smile streaked across her face and although I didn’t know it yet, I had just stumbled upon something that would change my life forever.
Long story short, Petra became my favorite band of all time. Still are as a matter of fact. I cannot begin to speak how their music influenced my life. It made me appreciate good music. Yes, good music. I will fight anyone tooth and nail that claims Petra is not good music. They’re certainly better than the three chord wonders we have in CCM today. Petra showed me that praising God and glorifying Him through music was not a boring, meaningless thing. Praising God is something that we should do with all our heart, mind and emotions. Petra showed me this.
I believe God uses music to influence His people. After all, music is His gift to us. There is a reason music will stir emotion in someone who is generally stoic. Music is powerful and it’s powerful because it was created by the Great Composer for His people. Music is a wonderful gift that I believe all Christians should enjoy in one way or another. Because of this, I thought I would share with you my love for Petra in this blog. I want to give you my top 5 Petra songs. Now I hope you realize that having to narrow down my favorite Petra songs to only five was a feat I thought would kill me. However, what I am giving you today are the top five songs that really influenced me and left a mark on my life. I hope you enjoy these as much as I do. Leave some comments below of your favorite Petra songs.
Number 5: "Thankful Heart"
I love this song. I often find myself humming it around the house or in the car. It is a constant reminder that I of all people have everything to be thankful for.
Number 4: "Stand Up"
Old-school Petra. The Greg X Volz era. Such a simple song, yet no less true. You don't need a theology degree or a a big platform to take a stand for Jesus. Stand for Him when all others fall away.
Number 3: "Beyond Belief"
I mean what Petra list would be complete without this song? Probably their most popular album, this title track defines my childhood.
Number 2: "Dance"
So much fun. This song is AMAZING. I can remember spending hours upon hours practicing the drums to this song until I knew every fill and every inflection. This song is kickin'.
Number 1: "All The King's Horses"
Where it all started. The first song I ever heard continues to be my favorite. It reminds me of the hope that I have in Christ. One day, He is coming back and there is no evil that can stand against Him. He's coming back for me.
Thank you Petra for being a voice for Christ to this little kid.