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Musical Mention: Undefeated – eKidz

*Musical Mention posts are more of a highlight feature rather than a source of no holds barred critical review. If you would like to suggest an album for a Music Moment feature then please comment below.

Oh Wow, out of nowhere.

Another great Kids Praise and Worship Release.

From my friends at Elevation Church.

eKidz (the family ministry of Elevation Church) has joined with Elevation Worship to release a new album for your entire family. From the title track, “Undefeated”, which proclaims that Jesus is victorious, to the powerful truth found in “I am Yours”, it is our hope that these songs will give voice to your family’s faith.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, we need more worship for kids in the world. 2,000 worship albums last year produced and maybe 50 for kids? Let’s do this!

UNDEFEATED

Tracklisting:

1. For Your Glory
2. I Am Yours
3. Undefeated
4. Your Love Is
5. Get to Give
6. Already Won
7. Standing

Okay, 7 tracks… Frank Bealer, I expected more overachieving from you, if your wife was involved it would have been 14 pullups, I mean tracks (you had to be there).

THOUGHTS

This is a pro album, mixed with a top notch production team from Elevation. Seven uptempo praise songs means they have accomplished what they set out to do – “give voice to your family’s faith”.

One of the hardest things is to get right is kids ‘choir’, it doesn’t seem like the team has attempted to capture any, but I would have loved to hear some kids voices on this album.

FAVOURITE SONGS

Every track sounds ‘right’, what I mean is that it matches the theme and emotion the song is seeking to convey. A victorious song like ‘For Your Glory’, or a more declarative song like ‘I am Yours’ has just the right ‘weight’ in musical style.

Standing – “Oh Yes we are standing, ‘Cause the enemy’s defeated, We’ll always be standing, on the promises of Jesus.” Great chorus and a song that simply declares truth and the groove of the song drives home the point!

Get To Give – This track’s production is one of my favourites and the theme – I get the privilege of serving God – is a valuable one in this era of looking out for number one.

Oh, and great music video!

6 Comments

Mike Johnson failed me

So here’s the thing. I love scouring the worlds internets to find music that is created specifically for Christian Kids, especially for use in Praise and Worship during weekend services. You can read all of the musical mention posts I have written in the past few months on the blog.

At Hillsong Kids we have used Elevate Curriculum and I have met Mike Johnson the creator at a CPC conference in San Diego in the past and he an almost embarrassingly generous man. But how did the knowledge of this series of albums pass-by me?

Radio E is the music from the Elevate curriculum series released in a series of collections. Some of the songs are specific to their curriculum, but there is a ton of praise music scattered all over the resource!

But somehow, the obvious extreme marketing efforts have somehow missed me? Here is the description from their website:

Tell the kids in your ministry how they can listen to Elevate music all week long! They can download the same music they hear at church from their favorite online music store! Radio E Music can be found on iTunesGoogle PlayAmazon MP3Spotify and much more. Preschool, Elementary, and generic music graphics available.

You can kinda check out the videos here: www.elevateathome.com/shop/music/ but it doesn’t appear to let you download videos?

So I am going to have to leverage the impressive reach and influence of my very influential blog* to make sure you have all heard about this incredible collection. And also put the pressure on Mike and his team to release lyric videos/backing versions of the praise and worship songs!

My theory is they should put together a collection of the praise and worship songs and create a resource we can use this weekend… (not literally, but soon would be great).

Yours Sincerely,

David Wakerley

P.S. I’m a big fan Mike… and of the producer of this music!

FOOTNOTES

*Not really

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Musical Mention: Light of the World – Johnny Burns

*Musical Mention posts are more of a highlight feature rather than a source of no holds barred critical review. If you would like to suggest an album for a Music Moment feature then please comment below.

This week I highlight an Australian Artist Johnny Burns based right here in Sydney. He has released a bunch of music starting way back in 2000 for kids. Let Your Light Shine is his latest album.

Every song is based on one of my favourite Bible Verses. I guess you could call it “Pop Memory Verses”. The highlight for me in making this CD was doing some vocal collaborations with a range of really cool singers. I have chosen a range of Bible verse, from both the Old and New Testaments, which have really meant a lot to me during my Christian walk.

LIGHT OF THE WORLD

5 Johnny Burns Let Your Light Shine

Let Your Light Shine is Johnny’s 4th children’s album. Working with his long time friend and producer, Wayne D’Chong, the two have delivered an album full of catchy songs teaching the Word of God.

Special guest vocalists joining Johnny on the album include Colin Buchanan, Rob Smith, Alanna Rodgers (from GarageHymnal), Dave Hanbury (from Revive), and the beautiful harmonies of Jacqui, Katie & Christine Host.

Tracklisting

1. Let your light shine – Matt 5:16
2. Light of the World – John 8:12
3. If – 1 John 1:8-9
4. The Wisdom Song – Jam 1:5
5. May I never boast – Gal 6:14
6. Clap your hands – Psa 47:1-2
7. The Lord looks at the heart – 1 Sam 16:7
8. Love Love Love (One Another) – John 13:34-35
9. He is good – Psa 145:8-9
10. Ask, seek, knock – Matt 7:7-8
11. The plans I have for you – Jer 29:11
12. Your word is – Psa 119:105
13. Seventy times seven – Matt 18:21-22
14. Trust in the Lord – Prov 3:5-6
15. Holy holy holy – Rev 4:8

THOUGHTS

This album was released in July 2012 and like the rest of Johnny’s releases is a mix of live instruments and electronic instruments. The mixes are quality and the lead vocals are never lost and clear as a bell (important for kids). Having Colin Buchanan, the ultimate Aussie kids performer on the album brings the guitars out and they wield the country lick with class.

Now one of my big focuses as always is can you use this music for praise and worship with your kids and a really great way is to produce ‘lyrics videos’ to use on your weekends. It’s a bit of a necessity these days and I would love to see these produced, even sing-a-long versions like previous albums.

I seem to say this a lot, but they have nailed the kids choir recording, it’s tight and sits well in the mix.

To get a hold of this album check out emumusic.com or iTunes.

FAVOURITE SONGS

All these songs a based on scripture, but rather than a direct quote from scripture (very hard) he has built a song around the concept of each verse and that is a great way to write songs for kids.

The Plans I Have For You (Jeremiah 29) – The melody works really well on this track with lyrics that come pretty closely from the Bible.

Holy Holy Holy – This is a really nice worship song, and the lead vocals work really well

Ask Seek Knock – Rock ‘N Roll pure and simple, but it’s just really well performed and a great arrangement.

Here are some more thoughts on the album biblesociety.org.au/news/music-that-has-kids-jumping-to-gods-word

 

2 Comments

Musical Mention: Look Up – Gateway NEXT

*Musical Mention posts are more of a highlight feature rather than a source of no holds barred critical review. If you would like to suggest an album for a Music Moment feature then please comment below.

Gateway NEXT is the worship ministry that is changing and impacting thousands of young lives weekly during Gateway Church services in multiple locations throughout North Texas. This worship team is from Gateway’s Amazing Kids ministry. It aims to inspire more people, especially children through music.

Inspired by this goal, Gateway Next has come up with its first project, an album entitled Look Up. This project was created to minister to the next generation, to the things that are happening every day in the lives of our young children. Music is a very effective means of reaching them and touching their lives.

LOOK UP

Look Up by Gateway NEXT is an uninhibited, pure and sincere brand of worship songs, full of life, energetically responding to the call of our loving God. (1 Samuel 3:8).

Look Up is filled with songs and words of declaration inspiring young hearts to be bold in their response to the voice of God that speaks openly with them. This first album will capture the attention of the next generation that is already changing their present world with their boldness, while building up their faith to be the catalyst for change tomorrow.

These original songs have been written and recorded with the same heart that comes from the leadership of Gateway Worship, and their powerful expression of worship. Look Up serves as a glance into their journey of discovery and understanding of the power and presence of God in their daily lives.

Tracklisting

  1. We Are
  2. Look Up
  3. You
  4. How Great Your Love Is
  5. One Way (All the Way Out)
  6. Gonna Love You
  7. Living For You
  8. Secret Place
  9. My Heart
  10. Masterpiece

GATEWAY NEXT WORSHIP – LOOK UP CD PROMO from Gateway Worship on Vimeo.

“GatewayNEXT’s album “Look Up” has gone from Dove nominated to Dove winner! So grateful for the support of our Gateway Church family and proud of every single person who was involved.” – Gateway Church

THOUGHTS

This really is the Kids Worship album of 2013! It is from a local Church team working together to produce something that will reach the hearts and minds of kids. This is a Church that obviously has it’s eyes across the whole breadth of ages. There are resources oozing out on their store at gatewaycreate.com for all ages. It is just simply refreshing to see a Church who have brought out so much for adults and teens focus on kids, I love it!

Look Up contains 10 new worship songs written by the Gateway team of songwriters. Featuring Kari Jobe. These songs from gatewayNEXT hit the preteen age perfectly and there is a nice mix of live/rock tracks with pop/dance tracks.

Looking forward to much more of this in the future and I would love to to see a live recording, there are videos online of a performance from a Church service, but it would be great to see a full album!!

REVIEW

Some of these songs lean toward the ‘performance zone’ rather than a congregational vibe, which gives the album a high replay edge so after multiple listens in the car the repeat button stays on. The Gateway kids worship pastor Dana Johnson has not only written some great songs but also bought the best of Gateway Church Worship to create worship that kids all over the world can relate to!

More info at JesusFreakHideout

2 Comments

Musical Moment: Kids Music – Go Fish

*Musical Mention posts are more of a highlight feature rather than a source of no holds barred critical review. If you would like to suggest an album for a Music Moment feature then please comment below.

Go Fish are a group of guys that can really sing, I mean REALLY sing. I love the skills of acapella groups, like The Manhatten Transfer from back in the day and in Australia the Idea of North and in the Christian world The Katinas.  The roots of Go Fish are fully in acapella which makes them stand out big time in the genre of kids music.

Originally formed in 1993 by Jamie Statema and based in Minnesota. For 10 years their music was geared primarily to a teen and adult market, until 2003 when they released Splash!, an album aimed towards children.

 

Kids Music

The Go Fish guys have once again redefined what it means to make music for kids! Your children will be praising God with songs like My God, Glory, and Praise Your Name. The air guitars will be rockin’ with Fruit Of The Spirit and Kids Music! If you think you know what “kids music” sounds like…think again! Crank up the stereo in your minivan and let the fun begin!

We are continuing our mission of making great music for kids that won’t drive parents bonkers with our latest release KIDS MUSIC! So why the title Kids Music?  Simple.  We want kids ages 0-100 to know that this CD is specifically for them!  We also wanted to let the world know exactly what we do.  We make “kids music” and we make no apologies for it.  (The title track makes that quite clear!) My prayer is that your kids will love the new music and that this album will point kids to the only God who deserves our praise and glory! Thank you for allowing us to make music for your family.  It is an honor.

Tracklisting

1.My God
2. Glory
3. Fruit Of The Spirit
4. Praise Your Name
5. Walk With God
6. Jump (Featuring DJ Pray Z)
7. Gotta Move!
8. Fly Sally Fly
9. Shackles (Praise You)
10. Kids Music

THOUGHTS

This is an album whose parts fit together perfectly, the production of the music fits the singing style. Tight, clean and mixed expertly. I really appreciate music that has been through the professional wringer so to speak, taking the music to full potential.

Traditionally kids albums have a requisite variety of genres. You know, pop a reggae song in there, gotta have a hip-hop track, some kind of bluegrass for good measure. I like an album that has a cohesiveness to it, a variety that works together and Kids Music has exactly that. A nice mix of styles and even a fun songs (Fly Sally Fly) that are more about entertainment. That can be attributed to the production on the album I think, each track is balanced to work together.

And shackles is a classic that really works for the boys and their version is pretty sweet.

REVIEW

One of my strong focuses in this series is to highlight music that can be used with the kids at your Church. Now that’s not the main goal of every song, but I really like finding songs that will work .

I think that this is a great group of songs that work fantastic on at home, they are going in the kids playlist for sure. And you can see from the songs they include in their worship resource pack the ones they recommend for using at Church.

And that’s a nice way of making your songs available I think. Separate out the songs that will work in Church settings and make them available in a pack. A very good model for others to follow (including us!) 🙂

Check out this review for more thoughts.

2 Comments

Musical Mention: Nothing is Impossible – Planetshakers Kids

*Musical Mention posts are more of a feature rather than a source of no holds barred critical reviews. If you would like to suggest an album for a Music Moment feature then please comment below.

For the longest time I have enjoyed Planetshakers music and we have used Planetshakers Curriculum at Hillsong Kids. They have a distinct style and vibe that is a little bit Rock ‘n Roll and little bit dance. So I am incredibly blessed to see that Planetshakers Kids has released an album! It’s about time and it is great!

After a transition recently, changing their name and rebranding the ministry slightly I am impressed by the pace in which they have released resources… may long it continue. Ministries across Australia continue to bring excellence to the table and I am very proud of this great Melbourne ministry.

NOTHING IS IMPOSSIBLE

Nothing Is ImpossibleFeaturing a collection of the favourite worship songs birthed out of Planetshakers City Church, for ages 5-12 this Album has 16 fun tracks that will encourage kids in their praise and worship and allow them to enjoy cool music that is relevant today

They have released a companion Nothing Is Impossible resource DVD, featuring lyrics videos with optional sing-along split and stereo tracks (background vocals and instrumental).

We feel it’s important to give kids music that they can be comfortable showing their unchurched friends, because the music is just as cool as what they might hear on any radio station, movie or TV show. Jesus spoke the language of the day, He was culturally relevant, whilst not watering down the message. We seek to do the same, and it’s our prayer that as your kids, grand-kids or friends listen, they are drawn closer to God and that the Biblical truths would be embedded deep within their life and serve them well into adulthood.

CD Track List:
01. Intro
02. Nothing is Impossible
03. Psalm 100:5 & Prayer
04. This Is The Day
05. You Are Good
06. Put Your Hands Up
07. Acts 2:24 & Prayer
08. The Anthem
09. Healer
10. Let Praise Awaken
11. Get Up
12. Limitless
13. I Call You Jesus
14. We Cry Out
15. Lamentations 3:22 & Prayer
16. Great Is Your Love

THOUGHTS

One of the great things about this album is that because of a distribution deal with integrity music  (I am assuming looking from the outside), they have partnered with Shout Praises Kids and are featured all over the place online. It’s a fantastic thing that will take the music further than it could by themselves! So in the USA etc. if you purchase this album it will be branded Shout Praises Kids Presents.

I love the mix of the kids singing on the tracks, it doesn’t have the ‘shrill‘ tone that kids choirs can get especially when using a group of kids that may not have any training. My favourite track is the title track Nothing is Impossible as a song that we have sung at events like Kidshaper over the years. The worship songs overall have an EXCELLENT mix with a group of kids singing that really know the material… not sure if they recorded any of the tracks live but it sure sounds like it at some points!

REVIEW

Fabulous. Simply fabulous, easily the best kids worship album I have heard this year, it has all the resources you need to get these songs started in your ministry and it’s an album mixed just right with a style that is spot on. The inclusion of the song Healer in the Integrity music version of the album is a nice one and it’s a song I always appreciate.

Of course I would like to see more songs written specifically for kids, but as I pointed out, the Planetshakers music style is already predisposed toward using a lot of their songs with kids.

NOTE: Planetshakers guys ( feel free to comment on any more details and I will edit the post! BTW, it’s really easy to write plantshakers as a typo! 🙂 Thank goodness for spellcheck.

11 Comments

Here’s what’s coming…

So here’s what happened.

Over the years I have tried to make every one aware of new kids music coming down the tubes, especially praise and worship music from independent artists, churches etc.

In August last year I wrote this post about a new kids album coming out here in Australia from a local Church here in Sydney. I couldn’t find any other real information on the album and declared my post the official website for the album 🙂

That idea stuck with me a while and ruminated in my fertile imagination fuelled by Pepsi Max and Dark Chocolate.

So what I hope to do is a whole lot more of these kind of posts. Now I don’t really want to call them reviews, because being a producer of music and content myself it’s a little awkward to critique the work of others, so the posts will not be the kind of hard hitting journalistic expose that purports to decide the success or demise of an album.

BUT – instead serve as a great way to highlight the great kids music coming from all corners of the world. With about 2,000 ‘praise and worship’ albums for adults coming out from Churches and independent artists and probably 50-100 for kids each year I reckoned I could cover a lot of them!!!

I’m going to scour the net looking for music but here’s how you can help:

  1. Comment below if you think this is a good idea.
  2. Get me in contact with any music creators you know, or get them to contact me with their music!
  3. Comment below with links for great music
  4. Make some great music and let me know!

This will be great!

Time Is On My Side

Jenna via Compfight

4 Comments

More Nu Musak

Ah!

Brilliant.

More new praise and worship music for kiddly winks.

I REALLY like the Kids on the Move team (I even bolded the REALLY if you noticed). The Senior pastor of Church on the Move Willie George practically invented children’s ministry (not even joking) and Jim Wideman it’s co-creator took it to new heights as the kids pastor for many years!

SIDE NOTE: I have had the privilege to spend some time with Jim Wideman and here’s pretty much how conversations go with him:

Me: “So we did this <insert kind of cool thing> with our kids last year, but we couldn’t seem to <insert issue>”

Jim: (clears throat) “Yeah, tried somethin’ like that back in 1984 and found that you need to <insert solution> and God will bless it, dadgummit!”

Me: “Oh… yeah… wow…”

(Problem solved).

And… back to topic: In the last little while the seeds blog has come online and been a HUGE blessing to me as I have watched kids services and events all filmed beautifully and lots or input from their myriad of awesome people like Adam Bush and Gabe George etc.

Check out their CM category on the blog.

So enter their album Greater is He!

Tracks include:

Jesus, What a Friend
I Love My Bible
Jesus Is Alive Right Now
Greater Is He
Supernatural
You Are My Rescue
I Obey Right Away
Jesus, I Love You
By Faith
Jesus Is the Way
Jesus on My Journey
Jesus, What a Friend (Remix)

My favourite? Jesus on My Journey.

I really like the title track Greater Is He with an awesome kids choir rocking in the background as well! But don’t take my word for it check out the iTunes link and sample some of these tunes!

Awesome job KOTM team, I’m sure that Hillsong Kids will be worshipping to some of these soon… which leads to a question… backing tracks and website with lyrics?

 

 

 

10 Comments

New Kids P&W

At Kidshaper Conference this year we were introduced to a team from ImagineNations Church in Penrith, Sydney.

INK is the band from ImagineNations Kids and they are awesome! They were playing songs from their CD Not Too Young and generally rocking out.

Our Churches need to be producing more praise and worship for our kids. The ratio of adult albums to kids is exorbitant, I would guess 100 to 1??

Well done Allyson Parker (Insert twitter link or similar social media site hopefully soon?) and the team!

And it seems that I may have an exclusive on this, because I cannot find a page or website or even a twitter mention, other than my wife?

So, by the power invested in me by the interwebs, I name this blog post as the official site of NOT TOO YOUNG by INK. 🙂

So not sure how to buy it, and not sure how you can listen to it, but I am hopeful that someone from the team will post a comment as the official site emerges!

UPDATE: So as the official Album Page, I thought I better add the track list and some credits from the album…

Track List:

1. Not Too Young
2. Get Up
3. My God Can Do Anything
4. Only One I Live For
5. Yours Alone
6. First Love
7. Super Awesome God
8. You Never Change
9. To The Rescue
10. Follow You Heart
11. Change Their World
12. You Are God

Produced by: Darren Field, Michael Winnett, Simon Austin
INK – (ImagineNations Kids) is the children’s ministry of ImagineNations Church Sydney.
2 Comments

E is for Encouragement

I have given myself a challenge for the next 26 days – post the complete A-Z of Ministry to Children.

E… Education, entertainment, Eric, eternal, effervescant…

E is for Encouragement – (I recently wrote a post at the official Hillsong Blog ‘Collected’ about this topic – have a read, but I want to talk about it here as it relates to kids).

I firmly believe that one word of encouragement to a child can literally set in motion the call of God on their life. I still remember the words both positive and negative that we spoken to me as a child about what I was capable of. You as a leader occupy an important place in the mind of a child, you’re not as present as a parent but you are around enough to have a big influence on the kids you minister to, in short, you can be a hero or a zero. Take the opportunity to speak words of life over their future every chance you get.

Research written about in the book NurtureShock has shown that some forms of praise can actually hold children back. Avoid praising children about their natural talent and giftings. eg. “You’re so brainy”, rather praise and encourage their efforts and hard work.

Emphasizing effort gives a child a variable that they can control,” she explains. “They come to see themselves as in control of their success. (Location 376 Kindle Edition)

There is a lot more to be said on this topic, but try it this weekend in your services at Church – watch how many times you encourage kids about innate ability rather than the attempt they have made.