The songs that glorify the transforming power of God have long been in their own category. Their divinity is in the emotion, the gratitude to our Creator expressed within. Their purpose - to touch the human hearts with love. It's not a coincidence that they call it "inspiring music". But in fact, this is the actual "music for the soul".
History of The Genre
The Contemporary Christianity music genre is a popular music lyrically focused on issues related to Christian faith. Its roots date back to the late 1960s when a group of believers in the United States, called "The Movement of Christ", decided that there should be a more neoteric way of expressing their love to God than the hymns and the standard gospel.
The Contemporary Christian music is influenced by folk (American), gospel, pop, and rock music. Alternative hip-hop has also played an important role in shaping the genre in recent decades.
In the US, the Christian churches have a huge impact on the dissemination and popularization of this style. They are also one of the biggest producers of "inspiring music".
Among the famous musicians associated with this genre or who have some work based on the genre, are: Amy Grant, Michael W. Smith, Phil Keaggy, John Elefante, The Byrds, Bob Dylan, Van Morrison, Elvis Presley, Creed , Lifehouse, U2, Matthew West, TobyMac, Chris Tomlin, dc Talk, Steven Curtis Chapman, Newsboys, the great Aretha Franklin and many others.
In this chart, we have collected not only the best songs that fall within the Contemporary Christianity genre, but also some classical anthems of God, gospel and others.
1. Hallelujah - Pentatonix
This wonderful, very beautiful cover made by a choral formation from Texas is one of the most famous Christian hymns by Leonard Cohen.
Pentatonix is an extremely loved group of super talented singers whose performances are characterized by a great technical perfection and harmony of their voices. They are being a Grammy Award winner. In 2016, they released the album Pentatonix Christmas, and Hallelujah is the most famous single of it. Do not miss this harmony for the soul, pouring out from the musical notes!
2. Aretha Franklin - Oh Happy Day
Here the verbal explanations, I think, are superfluous. There is hardly anyone who listens to music and who has not heard the magical voice of the great Aretha Franklin - The Queen of the Soul Music.
As a child, Arena performed a gospel in one of the Baptist churches in her native state of Detroit, where her father was a church official. That's why all her work is influenced by her love of God. One of her best live albums bears the name “The Christian Amazing Grace” and is a double platinum.
Oh, Happy Day is a classic gospel and one of the more contemporary works of the singer, that is dedicated to God. There is a striking combination of jazz, rhythm and blues, a little rock and roll. To add, the participation of some of the best gospel choirs like The Clark Sisters and The Reverend Al Green make it really special as a sound.
In the song, you can also hear the voices of some popular contemporary musicians from different genres, including Patty Griffin, Jon Bon Jovi, and Queen Latifah. All this wonderful mix of talents is called Oh Happy Day and is filled with the inherent skill of Aretha Franklin.
A real ode to the joy of a life glorifying God!
3. Josh Groban - You Raise Me Up
4. Chris Tomlin - Amazing Grace (My Chains Are Gone)
5. In Christ Alone
TobyMac is the stage name of Toby McKeehan, one of the most prominent members of the "inspiring music" genre, with 20 singles in the Billboard's Christian Songs chart. His style is defined as Christian hip-hop, but he has songs in a variety of other styles, too. A number of times being a Grammy winner and also an owner of other prestigious music awards.
I Just Need You's message is clear and strong: when good and bad things happen, "You" are my hope. There is a reason for that hope. It is born of the supreme sacrifice that Jesus, the Son of God, performs to pay our sins here on earth. There is hope for everyone as long as he believes and trusts in our Savior.
The song lacks some basic elements for the gospel but is very positive and does not contradict the Scriptures.
The Australian band Newsboys is one of the best-known representatives of contemporary Christian music. The style of the Queensland boys is the Christian Rock. They have always succeeded in finding the balance between a good music for entertainment and music in the glory of our Almighty God, as the experts note. How well known and beloved among the fans of Christian music this group is, can be justified by their 6 gold albums (out of 17). God`s Not Dead is a single from the group's eponymous album.
12. Matt Redman - 10,000 Reasons (Bless the Lord)
13. Shane - Insecure
22. Thank You | Jesus Fellowship Songs
25. Chris Tomlin - Jesus
Chris Tomlin is among the most respected authors and performers of contemporary Christian music and a true religious leader. His strong faith is evident in his songs. Multiple times award winner of the Artist of the Year Award of the United States Music Gospel Association (GMA). In 2012, he won a Grammy award in the category "Best Modern Christian Music Album of the Year".
Jesus is one of Tomlin's latest hits. The single went out in July 2016. "I hope you will be encouraged, whether you find yourself in this song or not. - shares Chris Tomlin. "I know that Jesus is with you, he is here for you and he loves you!"
For the video of the song Jesus, Tomlin turned to his fans and urges them to send their own pictures and videos. To share their personal stories, prayers, and desires related to God. There are many believers from around the world. Consequently, the video was nominated in the "Video of the Year" category of the Dove Awards.
36. 7eventh Time Down - God Is On The Move
41. How Deep the Fathers Love for Us - Stuart Townend
The Contemporary Christian music is subject to different, often contradictory views. However, the facts are beyond doubt. Research has shown that the Christian church has increased its popularity and has grown since it began to impose this style. Many preachers (mostly from the Baptist Church in the United States) testify that after more Christian music has begun to be performed in their churches, the number of their laity has grown considerably.
God is not just the privilege of the church. He's with and within each of us. Music is just one way to express our love and gratitude to Him.
If we've been able to reach your heart or soul with one of the songs included in this chart, then we've done a great job. Let us know which one you like most! 🙂