Psalms as rock songs?

I'm looking through Psalms, and I was thought I'd ask you all this; what would you think if a musician turned the Psalms into rock songs in the style of, say, Jimi Hendrix or Eric Clapton?

Heck, how about even in the style of Bob Dylan?

Uhhhh....not in the style of Dylan, please.

Depends on the execution and intention. If well done with the intent of expressing the power of scripture I'd listen to it.

A little off topic, but I grew up listening to rap, all different types from the pure classics to the blasphemous stuff...I never thought I could keep my passion for it and serve christ but I found it..which leads me to believe that it could be done (rock, or any different type of music, even reciting pasages)

youtube.com/watch?v=kCdSWc6BBTQ

youtube.com/watch?v=Po3k6sPHeX0

Seriously, that would be EPIC!!!

As I mentioned in another thread, I always thought "You have had five husbands, and the man you're with now is not your husband" (to paraphrase John 4:18) was a good start on a blues lyric. As we also noted in the same thread "Turn, Turn, Turn" (Birds, Dylan, Pete Seeger) is based on Ecclesiastes. I don't see why, in theory, the Psalms couldn't be set or adapted to rock music, or otherwise form the inspiration for a rock song. Anyone so doing, however, is setting the bar for themselves really high, IMO. It used to be the test-piece for poets to work their own translation of psalms in verse (like Milton, Lomonosov, rhymed psalters/bibles etc.), that's just the lyrics. When you get to the music, you are setting yourself up against all the classical guys (Bach, Brahms, Handel) and even modern guys (Vaughn Williams). These are big artistic shoes to fill.

That would be fantastic. It would make it easier to memorize them, too! :blush:

[quote="TheLordsSon, post:3, topic:241748"]
A little off topic, but I grew up listening to rap, all different types from the pure classics to the blasphemous stuff...I never thought I could keep my passion for it and serve christ but I found it..which leads me to believe that it could be done (rock, or any different type of music, even reciting pasages)

youtube.com/watch?v=kCdSWc6BBTQ

youtube.com/watch?v=Po3k6sPHeX0

[/quote]

Thanks for these! I enjoy certain rap and hip hop. I like any with positive messages.

Do you happen to have a recording? :smiley:

That would be pretty cool, depending of course how it’s done like all music. You have to blend the lyrics and the music just so. If someone did it well, I’m sure that it would be pretty epic.

But not Bob Dylan. I prefer my songs to be coherent.

It's been done, by Protestants.

youtube.com/watch?v=-qdpAzRlc9M

I still love this version of Psalm 23. Back when I was a teenager, it was considered absolutely scandalous--demon rock music!

youtube.com/watch?v=IMUQEI0CLQM

And I love this version by Keith Green (who was being groomed to be Donny Osmond, but he converted to Christianity and walked away from the Hollywood promoters, so they picked Donny Osmond instead). Again, in 2011, it sounds pretty tame, but back in the 1980s, this stuff was pretty heavy "rock music" and many churches wouldn't let it through the doors.

youtube.com/watch?v=eG0lDsmi5Aw

Again, it's "boomer rock," but at one time, it was considered shocking!

There are plenty of other "Christian rock" versions of various Psalms. I wish with all of my heart that the Catholic Church would lift the "ban" on this kind of great music. I hear so much fruity, dull music in the Catholic Mass, and people actually call it "reverent." Well, to each his/her own . But for me, it's these kinds of treatments of the Psalms that lift me straight into heaven and help me to concentrate on Jesus.

Catholic monk John Michael Talbot turned many Psalms into folk, folk-rock, rock songs throughout his career. The Christian bands Third Day, Jars of Clay, Mercy Me and artist Bebo Norman have a few Psalm-based rock tunes on previous recordings. I am sure there are more Christian and Catholic artists out there who have set the Psalms to a rock beat.

John Michael Talbot - Come Worship the Lord (Psalm 95)

Your Love Oh Lord - Third Day (Psalm 36)

God Be Merciful to Me - Jars of Clay (Psalm 51)

Psalm 139 Mercy Me

I Will Lift My Eyes-Bebo Norman (Psalm 121)

This version is not rock, but trance. The song is in German and Latin. It is pretty cool. I have a collection of E Nomine on my MP3 player. E nomine.. Psalm 23 ( Das Testament ) special mix edition youtube.com/watch?v=CNzRlmyiwg4 Dextra Testare Dextra Testare Sigini Sempiternus I also their other songs like: Ave Maria (the video to this song is very moving) youtube.com/watch?v=nvxhIar3mnQ Padre Nuestro youtube.com/watch?v=CSk-EYVChJo If you like something "Satanist," try to listen Lucifer and Der Exorzist. youtube.com/watch?v=NdBHnd1gpQ4&feature=related Lucifer Mortuus Diabolus Nec Deus Nec Arch Angelus. Satan Der Fürst der Finsternis Lucifer Mortuus Diabolus Nec Deus Nec Arch Angelus. I come from the Kingdom of Evil. My Kingdom is the Evil. (I am) the abyss, the assessor, the chaos. Fallen from God, I am the tempter, the destroyer, the Anti-Christ. My name is Lucifer. "My name is legion, and we come with many." "My name is legion, and we come with many." "My name is Lucifer!" Lucifer, the Devil of the Dead Neither God or Arch Angel youtube.com/watch?v=oUVKYpddCCg Ostende te daemon devotus nomine crucis evade

I'm partial to Sin Dizzy's version of Psalm 23:

youtube.com/watch?v=aQQJL_-ALLw

:D

Honestly, though, I always thought that -- if I was ever going to fulfill my dream of founding a Catholic orchestral/symphonic power metal band -- I would devote 15 albums to doing awesome versions of all the Psalms (with roughly 10 Psalms per album, of course).

Then I would probably tackle the four pillars of the Catechism. Or, at least, I would have an an album that tackles the seven petitions of the Our Father.

Oh, if only I had musical talent.... :p

The musician Jon Foreman, from the Christian rock band Switchfoot, released four solo EPs a few years ago. They're titled "Summer," "Fall," "Winter, and "Spring." The songs are almost all taken from either Psalms or Isaiah.

They're beautiful, along with the songs he wrote that aren't based on anything. They're probably pretty close to what you're looking for if you're open to folk and folk-rock. Even if it's not what you want, I highly recommend all four EPs.

[quote="Gift_from_God, post:1, topic:241748"]
I'm looking through Psalms, and I was thought I'd ask you all this; what would you think if a musician turned the Psalms into rock songs in the style of, say, Jimi Hendrix or Eric Clapton?

Heck, how about even in the style of Bob Dylan?

[/quote]

The Blind Boys of Alabama do an awesome 23rd Psalm. :thumbsup:

I'd love to see someone do a really good job with the Psalms, putting them to music - without paraphrasing them, or editing them - just the straight actual Biblical text, with nothing added, nothing "personalized," and nothing taken away. :)

Here's another version of E Nomine's Psalm 23 in three languages: German, Latin, and English. E Nomine is truly amazing. youtube.com/watch?v=3PZ9sfxbEIo&feature=related

I'm shocked no one mentioned this one yet.
"40" by U2 based on Psalm 40.
Here are two live versions:
youtube.com/watch?v=AjtpplE39_g
youtube.com/watch?v=sB4kxMj0-IE

Psalm 40
I waited patiently for the LORD; he inclined to me and heard my cry.
He drew me up from the desolate pit, out of the miry bog, and set my feet upon a rock, making my steps secure.
He put a new song in my mouth, a song of praise to our God. Many will see and fear, and put their trust in the LORD.

I always enjoyed psalm 137 recaptured by sublime.

youtube.com/watch?v=m0fSsBe5dCA

Yes it would. I do not normally listen to rock music but if it was done correctly I would buy it and thus listen to it,

Check out The Red Letters Project.com

Here is one for Psalm 78…youtube.com/watch?v=q7egNXlZ1W4
(and a softer one for Psalm 29…youtu.be/XYWca1bz2qI)
–Vince

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