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wowDiscs One and Two, from best to worst

Jars of Clay is the only CCM artist I’d ever willingly defend to a secular audience. The rest I’ll cheerfully acknowledge mostly hold a claim on me through nostalgia. Come on, though, “Love Me Good”? That is a damn delight! Michael W. Smith was the Christian George Michael. And (FOR BETTER OR FOR WORSE) the Newsboys were absolutely the U2 of Christian Contemporary in the 90s. And I know U2 is Bad now, but you have to admit they knew how to sell records. The W’s I had to put in the top ten, because “The Devil Is Bad” is just fun and of the two, is a better representative of Christian ska than the O.C. Supertones.

1. “Crazy Times” – Jars of Clay

2. “Deeper” – Delirious?
3. “Love Me Good” – Michael W. Smith

4. “Entertaining Angels” – Newsboys
5. “Into Jesus” – dc Talk
6. “Lord of Eternity” – Fernando Ortega
7. “The Devil Is Bad” – The W’s

8. “Undo Me” – Jennifer Knapp
9. “Pray” (Radio Edit) – Rebecca St. James
10. “If You Really Knew” – Out of Eden

The Smalltown Poets really nailed it with “There Is Only You” in WOW 2000, but “Anything Genuine” doesn’t quite crack the top ten for me. This is a respectable but indifferent pack. It’s pretty good, you know? You wouldn’t wince if it came on the local CCM station.

11. “He Will Make a Way” – Kathy Troccoli
12. “To Know You” – Nichole Nordeman
13. “Anything Genuine” – Smalltown Poets
14. “Agnus Dei” – Third Day

15. “Testify to Love” – Avalon
16. “Lord I Believe In You” (Remix) – Crystal Lewis
17. “Can’t Get Past the Evidence” – 4Him

18. “Steady On” – Point of Grace
19. “Strollin’ On the Water” – Bryan Duncan
20. “I Will Not Go Quietly” – Steven Curtis Chapman

“Chevette” was sort of a baseline here, acting as an Averagely Bad Song I used to calibrate the others. I’m not perfectly happy with this set. Does Steven Curtis Chapman really deserve to be in the bottom thirteen? No, but his song from Robert Duvall’s The Apostle shouldn’t kick anyone out of the middle group, either. Amy Grant was about four years before my time and she wore outdated jeans and I never liked her.

21. “Little Man” – The O.C. Supertones
22. “Chevette” (Remix) – Audio Adrenaline
23. “I Will Not Go Quietly” – Steven Curtis Chapman
24. “That Where I Am, There You…” – Rich Mullins
25. “The Power of a Moment” – Chris Rice
26. “God So Loved” – Jaci Velasquez
27. “There Is a God” – Natalie Grant
28. “Somewhere Down the Road” – Amy Grant
29. “What Would Jesus Do?” – Big Tent Revival
30. “His Cheeseburger” – VeggieTales

31. “The Light on the Hill” – Máire Brennan
32. “Healing Waters” – Michelle Tumes
33. “Never Be” – Carman

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