I remember listening to Gold City, The Kingsmen Quartet, Squire Parsons, and The Gaither Vocal Band on the way to church. As a little girl, I could sing along to most of their music (and every other gospel trio, quartet, or soloist).
Who am I kidding? I still enjoy singing along to the music.
"You know Audra, Southern Gospel music is the root of Contemporary Christian music." Me-maw and I had many discussions about the origins of both genres during my early teen years.
She told me about The Imperials. They were the first Southern gospel group to branch off into "Contemporary Christian music" according to the 1950s-60s standards. The group traveled mainly around the East Coast and Northern region. It has always taken the South a while to warm up to new ideas.
"Youth today can find Christian music stylized in any genre they like."
Many of my older friends at church have told me this through the years. And it's true. We have more options. Me-maw told me that when she was a teen, singing "Do Lord" every so often was the highlight of the service. I laughed the first time she told me. The Christian music industry produces albums by the thousands.
Judson's Annual Hymn Sing took place last chapel. It is the one chapel service that I can count on most students attending. If you've ever been to a Sunday night worship service where the music minister asks for hymn numbers, this service is its college equivalent.
I was asked why students enjoy the hymn sing when most young people prefer "blended worship" in church.
My answer: Most people grow up singing hymns.
I'm sure they have grandparents, aunts, uncles, etc. who taught them the art of singing hymns (four-part harmony is tough). Granted, there are few who know the origins of Christian music as we know it today. But, our God is one and the same.
"When We All Get to Heaven", we'll sing about God's "Amazing Grace" and be glad that "Jesus Paid It All."
Besides, when we worship Jesus, sometimes it takes all four verses and the refrain.