1. “Rubber Band Man” by The Spinners
This song came on during one scene of Avengers: Infinity War and I was reminded of what a fun song it is. It was originally written as a motivational song to encourage producer Thom Bell’s son, who was being teased at school for being overweight. The song, however, became a sensational hit landing it on Billboard’s Hot 100, and is listed as one of Detroit’s top 100 greatest songs of all time.
2. “Blackbird” by The Beatles
Just some decent song by a relatively unknown band.
3. “Down There By The Train” by Johnny Cash
Originally written by Tom Waits for another artist, this beautiful and bluesy song fount its way to Cash. The song pushes the boundaries of grace, “There’s room for the forsaken.” Even if “you’ve lost all your faith,” “you can be cared for.” It’s a great gospel song borrowing the imagery of the train as a the means of God’s grace, a popular image in Cash’s music. The song is light on instrumentation and gives a great demonstration of Cash’s powerful vocals.
4. “This Week the Trend” by Relient K
The band’s 2004 album Mmhmm is loaded with great tracks. It stands as one of those early 2000s pop-punk albums that I can still legitimately listen to again and again (with no hint of simple nostalgia, but legitimate pleasure). This particular tracks speaks well to the trend and habituation of failure, sin, and selfishness in our own lives. We make habits out of wronging others and indulging in our own selfishness. But, like many of Relient K’s songs, it boasts too of God’s life-transforming grace. So, the third verse speaks of “borrowing” the strength that God provides to not go backward to those same sins and failures again. It’s an earnestly hopeful song.
5. “The Ministry of Archers” by Joy Electric
This is the title track of the 2005 album by the ground breaking Christian electronic band. Ronnie Martin is a true artist, whose work has often seemed ahead of the curve and out of step with the times. This album in particular has a more melancholy bent than the other works of Joy, a bit darker. As such, this album stands out among the catalogue of work. I find this particular track to be one of my favorites.