This year, in conjunction with our National Conference, The Gospel Coalition has released Songs for the Book of Luke, a collection of songs written and recorded by church musicians from across the country.
What's held out as the “Gold Standard” of contemporary worship is often far from theologically sound. At its best, it's emotional, contemporary, and relevant; at its worst, it's divorced from both Scripture and also the heritage of hymn-singing and psalm-singing that has shaped Christian worship for a couple of millennia.
Fortunately, that's not the whole story in Christian music these days. Many gifted songwriters, pastors, and artists serve local congregations with an eye toward both beauty and truth. They care about congregational singing. They care about content that can strengthen the weak and comfort the suffering. They care about creativity, embodying the psalmists' call to “sing a new song.”
We want to highlight and encourage that work. After a nation-wide call for entries, more than 200 songs were submitted. Those were narrowed down to this collection of 13 songs, all rooted in the scriptures, all written for local congregations. The album was recorded last fall by Mike Cosper (of Sojourn Music) and a band assembled with church musicians from Florida, New England, Seattle, and many places in between. These artists have played with national touring acts and jazz legends, but more importantly, they are musicians who regularly get up in while it's still dark on Sunday mornings to serve local congregations. It's truly music by the church, for the church.
In just a couple of weeks, we'll be gathering at our National Conference, spending these days together meditating on the Book of Luke. On Tuesday night, April 9, we'll have a special concert to release this record. Part of the reason that TGC exists is to seek out and highlight the good work being done at local churches. I think this record accomplishes that purpose beautifully, and I think you'll agree.
The album will be available nationwide (and pre-orders will ship) on Tuesday, April 9—the same day as our concert at the National Conference.