Jumpstart 3: Confessions of a Musicianary

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This is a guest post by Jeff McCullough, Music Producer with JumpStart 3.

Jeff is a musicianary! He creates amazing music, motions and family devotions that help people remember God’s word.

You can connect with Jeff on Facebook, twitter and check out his website.  Jeff is giving away a free JumpStart 3 Lyric video download at the end of the post.

These are the confessions of a music producer turned kidmin music missionary!

Romans 10:17 says, “Faith cometh by hearing. And hearing by the word of God.” But, what happens to kids who aren’t hearing the word of God?

I have been a music producer for almost 30 years. 
I started my music career making the kind of music parents wish their kids never listened to.

In 1994, 
In the span of one week, I experienced the influence music had first hand. I had three eye opening experiences that changed my life forever.

The first: I was working in my studio mixing a rap song with awful lyrics and the lady, who shared my studio space stormed in and sternly said,

“I know you can hear the song but are you listening?!?!”

She was teaching children in the other room and they did not need to be listening to the crap I was working on.

Second, I was walking in the park and saw a young boy with headphones on listening to “gangster rap.”

He was bobbing his little head to the beat and rapping along to every word out loud. It was awful words and he was only 8 years old.

I remember thinking to myself “where is this kids parents”. 
Then it hit me, he might as well have been listening to the same song I was just producing in the studio.

I realized I had no control over who consumes the music that I create.

The Third, a client failed to show up to finish his rap project. I called his home and his mom said he was in jail.  Just two days before, he had spoken into my microphone a description of what would happen if he ever caught someone with his girlfriend.

He said in the song, he would put a cap in their dome. Translation shoots them in the head.

He left the studio and I didn’t give it another thought. It was the normal braggadocios talk that I had recorded time and time again. After all it was just a song right?

The day after our studio time together his girlfriend was getting a ride from her cousin and this rapper walked up to the car and without asking a single question or waiting for an introduction pulled out a gun and shot!

He shot his girlfriend’s cousin in the head. Just like he had said the day before in his song. He believed his own studio message.

This all happened in one week, just seven days. I had had enough.

I quit that day. I didn’t quit making music I decided to make music that would be appropriate for my children to listen too. Music that any four year old could sing along with. Music that would cause an eight year old to grow in their relationship with God.

Side Note: It’s been a long road to find the path to use music styles that aren’t considered Christian.

It seems crazy to me but I know many who will read this consider Christian to be a style. It is not. 
To be Christian music, it must contain content that deals with Christian subject matter.

That message can be set to country, reggae, rock, classical, pop, Edm (electronic dance music) or any other style of musical arrangement.

I decided to dedicate my life and all I do to set scripture to modern electronic music styles to reach an audience that has very little positive message coming at them.

I believe that if you want to reach the people no one is reaching you must do what no one is doing.

I used to make music for Disney and Zumba.

The music I make now is the same music styles I made for them.

The only difference is now every word of my music is straight scripture. 
Word for word.

If you get anything from my story, I want you to get this. Don’t compromise or grow weary doing good.

Remember, kids are listening. They listen to what’s playing on TV, the radio and the Internet. Today’s culture is broadcasting a powerful message, and it is not life giving.

Choose to provide your kids music options that will give life. Music options that will influence the choices they make and ultimately their relationship with God.

This is not meant to be a plug for my music. This is a story of why I do what I do! A calling I believe is directly from God to me. I can’t help but share it.

I’m passionate about helping this generation find music that compels them to be better and to serve God with a passion that is lacking today.

I wear a Mohawk so I can talk to people who feel uncomfortable around “normal people”.

I make music that reaches kids in and out of the church. Music that kids recognize as “their music”

Here are my tips for parents, pastors and kidmin leaders.

  1. Figure out what styles your kids love and then work to guide them to positive voices in those styles.
  1. Don’t judge or dismiss the art that captivates your kids. You may just make that forbidden fruit. Find a way to steer them to positive examples of what your kids already like.
  1. Help your kids be so thirsty for God that they are not satisfied by art that doesn’t point them to the One who made all music!!

If you want to connect with Jeff, he loves to talk about kidmin and music.  You can email him at info@JumpStart3.com.

Do you want to try Jumpstart3 for free?   Click here to download a free lyric video.

Special Discount: 15% off entire site

Take an extra 15% all the amazing products produced by Jeff at www.jumpstart3.com/4mychurch.  Use the promo code “organized”.

What Do You Think?

I’d love to hear what you think of JumpStart 3.  Have you used it in your ministry?  What were the results?  Leave a comment below.

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About the Author

Andrew VanDerLinden

Andrew is the Executive Pastor at Community Church in Eastern PA.

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