despite the fact that i am in the middle of several books right now (the secret message of jesus, growing healthy asian-american churches, to own a dragon, in praise of slowness) i could not resist purchasing this title at the bookstore today > >

this is amazon’s description:
“A riveting, in-depth, behind-the-scenes account of the subculture of modern Christian rock music, which saw estimated sales of one billion dollars in 2003 alone

Body Piercing Saved My Life is the first in-depth journalistic investigation into a subculture so large that it’s erroneous to even call it a subculture: Christian rock. Christian rock culture is booming, not only with bands but with extreme teen Bibles, skateboarding ministries, Christian tattoo parlors, paintball parks, coffeehouses, and nightclubs,encouraging kids to form their own communities apart from the mainstream.

Profiling such successful Christian rock bands as P.O.D., Switchfoot, Creed, Evanescence, and Sixpence None the Richer, as well as the phenomenally successful Seattle Christian record label Tooth & Nail, enormous Christian rock festivals, and more, Spin journalist Andrew Beaujon lifts the veil on a thriving scene that operates beneath the secular world’s radar. Revealing, sympathetic, and groundbreaking, Body Piercing Saved My Life (named for a popular Christian rock T-shirt depicting Christ’s wounds) is a fascinating look into the hearts and minds of an enormous, and growing, youth culture.”

i have been mowing through this book, alternately laughing out loud (and reading particularly funny passages out loud to family members) and sighing at the recognition of what can be so messed up about the christian subculture bubble deal.

while one might expect a spin magazine writer to be derisive and/or condescending towards christian rock, beaujon’s accounts have been very even-handed. he even counters some unfair criticism some bands have received.

this is the passage that convinced me to purchase this book:
At Christian rock festivals, it’s the adults who dress wacky – turning out in full kilt dress, for instance, or an Oompa Loompa outfit. These people are youth pastors, and I was more than slightly mortified when, upon entering the gates at the Orlando Fairgrounds to see the Florida franchise of the Cornerstone Festival, a well-scrubbed young fellow asked me if I was one.

although i am one of these oddball youth pastors, i do not want to be one of those creepy youth pastors who tries to be “hip with the teens”, tossing out “fo’ shizzles” for street cred through my well-groomed goatee (or ironic handlebar moustache for the hipster set). i think it’s great that many youth pastors can reach young people through various dude-isms, but it just doesn’t work for me. i’m too much of a dork.

i really want to be able to focus in on one book at a time, but this one was too good to pass up.

enjoying onelinedrawing and viva voce…