Also, Listener and The Homeless Gospel Choir made it to the BSC yesterday, and we had a lovely evening of music and good clean Christian fun (okay, well, maybe not so much. But they were awesome).
So tonight's post is for the three guys that stayed with us yesterday and today: Derek Zanetti of The Homeless Gospel Choir, and Christin Nelson and Dan Smith of Listener.
It may come as a surprise that The Homeless Gospel Choir is not really a choir. It's actually a one-man acoustic punk show, with an edge that is deeply convicting--perhaps even offensive.
"Sometimes I want to build a pipe bomb and blow up some Christian family bookstore; other times, I wish that I had half the courage to learn to love my enemies more."--The Homeless Gospel Choir, "An End to Everything"
If you walked away from this lyric only with the shock of hearing a man muse about blowing up a nice Christian store, which (aside from locally owned independent stores) are really only there to make money in the first place, you have probably missed the point: the struggle between hating our enemies and loving them. Still, Derek's lyrics beg a foreboding question in Christian art: Do we not sometimes need to feel offended?
Chris Nelson also played a short set last night with raw,
honest lyrics. In my conversations with Chris, I found him to be a beautifully humble, caring man, who understands what it means to find your own artistic voice. In one of his songs, he sang over and over something to the effect of "I don't care if it burns down, down to the ground." I'll let you determine what the "it" is.
And finally, good ol' Listener, bangin' on the washing machine. A bonus
to this performance was a projection of an old cartoon (one of those 99 cent DVDs you can get at Wal-Mart) over the entire stage, giving the whole performance a surreal vibe.
After the show, we spent hours together in communion; good beer, good laughs, and good food. This morning we woke up, we ate omelets and drank coffee together, I gave them a few tips about the local tobacconist, and they headed out of town.
The lesson to this story, kids, is that friendship and hospitality are perhaps the most important daily aspects of Christianity. As they left, hugging each of us, I felt like we had made a personal connection that was much more than a simple business transaction. Perhaps if more Christians began loving their neighbors for the sake of love instead of having an agenda of "making them Christian," the world might be truly transformed.