A Letter to Steven Curtis Chapman
Dear Steven Curtis Chapman, Is it okay if I call you Steven, if only for the sake of saving time? While I am a pretty decent typist, ‘Steven Curtis Chapman’ is a bit to type out each time I want to refer to you as, well, you. Don’t worry – I’m not trying to imply we’re friends or anything. Because that would be weird and, possibly, a bit creepy as we have never met in any way, shape or form. And it presupposes you will even be reading this.
Any which way, I have a copy of your most recent CD – #1’s, Volume 1 – and I quite enjoy it. Though I must confess to feeling a little silly to be getting my review up only now. You see, I had discovered near the end of March via Bryan Allain’s blog (I recommend checking his blog out if you haven’t already – he’s a funny guy) that you were releasing a collection of your number one songs. Bryan was getting the word out on behalf of his friend Alyssa, who was looking for bloggers to post reviews of the CD on their respective blogs. As a fan of your music and a blogger, I figured this would be a good fit, so I sent an e-mail to Alyssa. She was very understanding about my not being able to have the review up until now as I live in Canada and our postal system is not always the speediest, either.
But you know what I failed to think of, Steven? I could have simply looked at the track listing and listened to the songs I already had in my collection, and checked the rest out on You Tube. It wouldn’t have been hard. Because there were only two songs I did not already have – “The Great Adventure” and “Go There With You”.
Yeah – derp.
All that silliness aside, I enjoyed listening to this collection. The first track – “Lord of the Dance” – coincidentally was the first song of yours I ever heard. (I also enjoyed the video for it as well.) “Speechless”, “God is God”, “Fingerprints of God”, “Magnificent Obsession” and “All Things New” were other favourites I was happy to see included on this CD.
Though I do have a small confession to make, Steven. And it’s really more of a personal preference, and we’re strangers to boot, so take it with a pound of salt if you must.
Here it is (the confession, not a giant salt block): I don’t really like the original versions of “More to This Life” and “I Will Be Here”. I don’t know – maybe I was spoiled by the Abbey Roads Sessions/The Walk version of the former and the All About Love version of the latter. But you didn’t sound the ‘you’ I’ve been listening to all these years. You sort of sound like you were doing a Ray Boltz impersonation. And it’s not that Ray Boltz isn’t a good singer or anything – it was simply a bit odd to hear you sounding so similar to him. Unless . . . was sounding like Ray Boltz the 80s version of Auto-Tune in the CCM industry? Because come to think of it, there may have been other singers back then who were made to sound like Ray Boltz. And if there is anything people in the music industry seem to like to do, it’s to try to mass-produce another person’s success.
But I’m glad you have your own distinct sound now. It’s a good one, and I hope you keep making music for as long as you are able.
Yours truly, Michelle