Chris Lizotte: His Music History & Is There Good Christian Music?


Episode 48 is the long-awaited second half of my conversation with Chris Lizotte. I’ll repeat what I started Episode 47 with as my description of Chris, that he is known as and for a great many things  by a great many people. He is a successful Christian music artist —

Wait! Where are you going?! I say the words "Christian music" and you want to leave this episode behind already? Well, you’ll be missing out. This is another great episode filled with a lot of laughter, deep conversation and we got really close to tears as well. Or, maybe that was just me.

Again, I took these episodes with Chris as a direct challenge to make them extremely listenable for people of any and all faiths. Chris is an incredibly humble man who has done a lot of great things with his talents and gifts. We originally met about 25 years ago when a band I was singing in (yes… you read that correctly) opened up a couple/few times for Chris at various local spots.

This episode doesn’t exactly start right where the previous episode left off. Maybe more than some other 2-parters, you really will benefit from listening to the 1st part with Chris and I.

We dig in a little more into some of the different backstory of Chris’ path through music and becoming a fully-fledged recording artist: starting with his start shortly after high school with a band called The Spiritones. It was a few years later when I first met Chris and the band I was singing in (we were called 99) opened for and performed with him. Though Chris really urged me to, I saved you all and avoided putting any of that band’s music on this episode.

We touched on a lot of the different iterations of Chris’ bands and held out some high praise for a lot of the grandiose musicians that have played with him over the years: Ray "Sleepy Ray" McDonald, Shawn Tubbs and, most recently, Marc Ford (yes… that Marc Ford, formerly of the Black Crowes).

I teased this a little in my post of the 1st episode. This is way more on my shoulders than on Chris’… so, if anyone is going to complain, it should be to me. I dove right into the lions’ den and brought up the topic of: "Why is so much Christian music just not great?!" It’s something I have wondered for decades. I talked about a time long ago when I really tried to find more Christian  music to listen to and how difficult and nearly completely unfruitful that search was for me. And, yes… I did in fact say during this episode that Christian music is like the brussel sprouts of music.

Chris challenged me a little on my thoughts on this. We talked about how "the industry" works… and I know that can go for the music industry, in general. Heck… that can go for nearly any entertainment industry, when you really think about it.

Christ brought up some of the early music that was not called "Christian music" before "the industry" came in and started taking over. Artists like Mavis Staples, Alison Krauss and even Bob Dylan. After recording this episode, Chris listed out a few more artists I should check out. Let me just tease this out right now: this entire conversation has led to me starting to work on a new podcast that delves into this. It’s in its infant stages… but keep your eyes and ears open for that.

A list of the music on this episode: Chris Lizotte "Change My Heart Oh God", The Black Peppercorns "Helplessly in Love", Dicky Ochoa "My Beloved", The Black Peppercorns "Please", Chris Lizotte "Sweet Mercy", Chris Lizotte "Close to Your Heart", Richfolk "Peace in the Middle of the Storm", Chris Lizotte "Glory to the King > I Shall Be Released".

Chris Lizotte’s music can be found pretty much anywhere you stream your music: iTunes, Apple Music, Google Play, Spotify, Pandora, etc.

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