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    Crowder – AN NRT EXCLUSIVE EDITORIAL

    Christian music icon Crowder has been releasing great music–long before I was born. I grew up listening to his songs on the radio, not to mention seeing him perform in concert several times. He truly has a gift for songwriting and preaching the gospel through his music. His unique sound is unmatched by others in the Christian music industry, making his songs even more special.

    His music career was kickstarted by the David Crowder Band, of which (if you didn’t crack the name’s code) he was the lead singer. Now, without the band, he simply goes by the name Crowder. If you’re new to Crowder’s music and you want to listen to his biggest hits, then this article is for you. Here are 10 essential Crowder songs you must hear. So, pull out your phone and get ready to add them to your summer playlist.

    “No One Like You”

    The rapid guitar riffs kick off this song in a way that gets your attention immediately. Combine that with the expertly crafted drum rhythm and it’s the perfect song to nod along to–or should I say headbang to. The heavy cymbals and dance-inducing nature mark it as the only rock song on this list, a designation “No One Like You” wears proudly. Released in 2007 by the David Crowder Band, this song is a musical representation of the freedom given to us by God. Although it is certain to make even the most experienced worship leader run out of breath, it is still an exceptional song to worship to. Watch out, you may be led to get up and dance. To quote the final lyric: “There is no one like our God.”

    “How He Loves”

    “How He Loves” provides a tear-jerking reflection on God’s lavish love for His children. The carefully chosen lyrics paint the listener a clear picture of our relationship with the Father. I’ve found it is so easy to float away on this song, flying between clouds sustained by a relentless joy. Only the drums bring me back down to Earth and remind me to practice God’s love in my everyday life by sharing it with everyone around me. It’s quite marvelous that one song, touched by God, can hold all that power. It is certainly the reason that Crowder has had such an impact on Christian music.

    “I Am”

    As soon as I heard the first words of this melody, I recognized it immediately. I love how Crowder takes on the perspective of God, so elegantly displayed in these lyrics: “I am/Holding onto You/In the middle of the storm/I am holding on.” In addition to traditional instruments, Crowder also adds a banjo here which amplifies the sound. The truth spoken in this song can’t be compared to anything else because it is simply God’s truth. Spoken from that first-person point of view, it is sure to resonate with listeners, as it did with me.

    “Come As You Are”

    There is so much hope in this beautiful song. Crowder’s voice carries the words along the whole time, accompanied only by a soft piano and occasionally some strings and drums. It’s a song that speaks of grace and redemption. You know that feeling of “home?” That indescribable feeling that emanates comfort, safety, and joy. Well take all those happy thoughts and picture them floating through the air on sound waves. You’ll be pretty close to explaining the majesty of this song and how listening to it feels like receiving a big hug from God.

    “Lift Your Head Weary Sinner (Chains)”

    One of the beauties definitive of God’s kingdom is acceptance. No matter how brutal one’s past was, no matter how scarred it left them, they are welcome in the House of the Lord so long as they confess their sins and accept Him into their heart. All chains fall at the feet of our amazing Lord and I love how perfectly that grace is described in this song. It is a mercy we need every day that only comes from Jesus. He will never stop providing and this song will never stop representing mercy for me.

    “My Victory”

    The words of this song are tremendously strong so I highly recommend watching the lyric video so you can catch them all. The song, as a whole, is a confirmation of who Jesus is. No matter how much we doubt ourselves, we have no reason to doubt that Jesus will come through on our behalf. He is capable of turning the worst situations around; I have seen him do it in my life and that of so many others. After all, He rose from the dead. If he can do that, He can do anything.

    “Forgiven”

    When all hope is lost, when we don’t even trust ourselves, God still does. When He looks at us, He sees a child he loves relentlessly. All sins are forgiven because there is no grave that can hold us down. We are God’s children and He always comes for us. The following lyrics highlight this amazing grace: “God, I fall down to my knees/With a hammer in my hand/You look at me, arms open.” Crowder focuses on God’s exemplary mercy and His total ability to love us with all His might.

    He forgives us when we don’t deserve it and always seeks out the best in us to prove we aren’t over yet.

    “Let It Rain”

    This song, featuring Christian pop artist Mandisa, switches gears to a sound resembling more of pop, which made it a radio hit. I always love the metaphor of rain so this song is preaching right to my heart. Both vocalists invite God’s presence into their lives with confidence only possible of Him. As they so clearly state, God is the same one who makes the rainfall on our dry ground, literally and figuratively. It’s that twist that makes my love rain on this song more every time I listen to it.

    “Red Letters”

    This song will always have a special place in my heart as the first song I heard Crowder play live. It kept popping up in my life after that concert–on the radio, in my head, you name it. Eventually, I slowed down long enough to think that God may be trying to tell me something. Turns out this song taught me more about freedom than anything else could have. I really needed to hear some more about the supernatural power that breaks all bondages and God chose to speak about that through this song. Music is a powerful thing and God is even greater; combined they make a weapon from which all enemies shrink.

    “Good God Almighty”

    Looking for a raise-your-hand, sing-it-at-the-top-of-your-lungs kind of worship song? Well, look no further. This tune is continually catchy and has the kind of beat you can’t resist clapping along to. Even better, the words speak of what our Christian lives should look like: “Praise Him in the morning/Praise Him in the noontime/Praise Him when the sun goes down” This song is an elegant mix of a guide to Jesus-centered lives and praising that very man, Jesus. It’s the perfect finish to our song list to send you on your way, dancing your heart out.

    Selena Schulz is NRT’s youngest staff contributor. She loves God, music, reading, and writing

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