Following the recent funeral of gospel legend, Andraé Crouch, Kirk Franklin – a leading mover and shaker in the scene – has undergone some soul searching about the current state of gospel music in his blog on patheos.com.
Franklin enthused about Crouch’s exceptional songwriting talent, and how his music transcended racial and cultural barriers. He wrote, “His pen became the sword that erased racial and cultural barriers within the birth of the Jesus Movement in the 70s. No matter your colour or denomination, the soundtrack of your church life was Andraé Crouch.”
In his blog, Franklin went on to state that today’s gospel artists aren’t having the same impact as Crouch, because they’ve taken their eyes off the main goal. “Our music doesn’t affect people the way it used to. It doesn’t create movements like it did during Andraé’s time. Is it because today’s worship leader is too busy trying to get the record deal, the applause, a higher church salary, and that crossover song? [The guilt is all over my hands, people!]”
He added, “Every step we take away from the cross – and the cross alone – every time we focus on sales over souls… the goal gets lower and lower.”