John Cornish

Song Review Criteria

One of the things I like to do on this blog is review Christian songs that are currently very popular or that I have recently discovered to be special in my life. I am also open to suggestions for songs to review.

I like to blog these reviews for two reasons: one, it always helps me personally to think through these things as one of the important aspects of music ministry in the local church is that of selecting music that is appropriate for use in worship. Two, I hope that by reading these reviews, my peers, friends, and fellow church members would be encouraged to really analyze the music that is a part of their lives, rather than simply absorbing everything the world (and even the Christian music industry) throws at us.

When I do a song review, I typically analyze the songs using the following criteria:

  1. Text: theological content, depth, lyrical beauty.
  2. Melody: singability, memorability, beauty, relationship to text.
  3. Harmony: beauty, intricacy, creativity.
  4. Rhythm: style, feel, singability, coherence with text.
  5. Other: other positives or negatives worth noting.

In every review I acknowledge that what I write is only my opinion. I would never write anything with the intent of attacking another musician or fellow believer. I just hope to help us all think through what we sing in worship to determine what is indeed the “best” option.


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