Recently, sportswriter Jason Whitlock signed on with Glenn Beck’s The Blaze network to produce a new audio/visual podcast named Fearless. When asked in something of a dry run podcast before the actual first episode what the purpose of the show might be, Whitlock explained that being on The Blaze enabled him to have freedom in incorporating his relatively recently rediscovered Christian faith into a show along with sports talk. While this is certainly something worth applauding, it warrants pointing out that we on the Good Pirate Ship RedState have beaten Beck and Whitlock to the punch by some, oh, nine years. With that I introduce Cephas Hour.
A bit of backstory. Long before I started sports blogging, this in part due to the fact blogging was either unknown or nonexistent at the time, I was an active music journalist covering the contemporary Christian music scene for different publications. This was from 1987 to 1994. Most of the publications have long since ceased to exist (not my fault, I swear). During my tenure I was often frustrated in that the artists I wanted to write about and promote, namely the first generation of Christian alt rockers, were pretty much dead last on the priority list of the assorted record labels and publications. I wanted to talk about Daniel Amos, Steve Taylor, Undercover, The 77s, The Choir, and many other bands and artists. They wanted Amy Grant and Michael W. Smith. I did interview Smith once; still waiting for that Grant interview. But I digress.
Eleven years after my rather ungraceful exit from the business, a concert in Southern California featuring some of my favorite artists from back in the day reignited my enthusiasm for the music I had mostly ignored for a decade plus. Free from publication and other concerns, I set out to write a book detailing the lives then and now of the artists that once again meant so very, very much to me. It’s available at Amazon if you’re interested.
Cephas Hour came into being in 2012 as a weekly show on an Internet radio station, featuring Christian rock and pop from the ’80s (the station’s format was and is all-’80s) with occasional dips into the ’70s and ’90s. As the show evolved, in January of this year it was “suggested” by the station owner that since I had grown ever more expansive with my playlist, perhaps I should move the show to a podcast format. In other words, he canned me.
The show, which now comes out once a week although there is an occasional gap, features the finest in Christian rock and pop from then and now, along with some commentary on spiritual or social matters by yours truly in-between the first few songs. The latter portion of the show is devoted to music.
While non-mainstream Christian music may not be your thing, if you have either fond memories of classic Christian rock and/or are eager to discover what is out there that isn’t the same ol’ same ol’ praise and worship playing on KLOVE, I encourage you to give the show a listen. It is available through multiple channels:
Sorry, no Spotify.
I’ll get back to my usual sports, society, and political commentary here in the next post. I simply wanted to share something that has been a labor of love for years in the hope that at least some of you will enjoy the music and the message. Thanks.