What Album Did the Most to Change and Expand Your Taste in Music?

I saw that question on twitter, and I thought it was be fun to discuss here. Here’s the first answer that popped into my head: Branford Marsalis’s Renaissance. I especially enjoyed his versions of “Lament” and “The Peacocks,” two tunes I really like to this day. I would listen to this album a lot while studying, and I started checking out recordings from musicians that Marsalis mentioned in the liner notes. This was basically the first album that opened me up to older forms of jazz.

3 thoughts on “What Album Did the Most to Change and Expand Your Taste in Music?

  1. I bought my first two Christian albums on the same day at the Giving Tree in early 10th grade. Amy Grant’s Age to Age and Prodigal’s Electric Eye. I had been spending very late nights trying to figure out chemistry, the first truly challenging course in school I’d ever had, and for some reason I’d have the radio on the Christian radio station. I liked the overnight DJ; it felt like he was keeping me company as I worked through the extra problems I made myself do. One night he played “Shout it Out” from Prodigal, and I really dug it. So after requesting he play it a few nights in a row, I just saved a few bucks and went to the Giving Tree and bought the album.

    I had enough for two cassettes, so I also picked up the Amy Grant album, which I already pretty much knew all the songs on because they played so many of her songs on the radio. These two albums were the beginning of what turned out to be a decades-long interest in music on Christian labels. My tastes went a little off the beaten path by the time I was a frosh in college, but most of my money still went to music I bought in Christian bookstores, which then led me to seek Christian musicians not on Christian labels, such as Bruce Cockburn, T Bone Burnett, the Alarm, and King’s X.

    Amy Grant and Prodigal were my gateway drug.

    1. This raises a question for me: Who are some of the more interesting Christian musicians in the last ten or twenty years? Maybe you could mention some in different genres.

    2. My problem is that over the past 15 years or so, my interest has kind of stuck with the same musicians, so I can’t really name anyone, while I can tell you what those same bands from the early 90s have done since then. I’m am determinedly not like this with my secular music, focused on not being like most people our age who only like the same music they’ve always liked. For some reason I am like this with Christian music.

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