My Sunday Song – “Maybe They’re on to Us” by Needtobreathe

For My Sunday Song #165, we are talking about the song “Maybe They’re On To Us” by Needtobreathe.  The song is off their wildly successful album “The Reckoning” which came out in 2011.  The song was not a single, but still a favorite of mine.  The album did really well and went to #6 on the Billboard charts thanks in part to this song and all the great songs on this album.

The song is about paranoia.  For the band, that paranoia is a wondering if the fans know too much about the them and will figure out who they really are and not like them.  Maybe the will stop listening and it will all just go away.  They were starting to get successful and they had a fear of it disappearing in a flash.  That is an honest fear.

I think people feel that way in everyday life as well.  You walk around in life wondering if people will realize you are just faking it trying to get by day-to-day.  Maybe they will discover you really don’t have your stuff together after-all…but honestly who really does?  I don’t think anyone.  We are all faking it a little each and every day.

Musically, I really love Bear’s vocals.  His delivery of the lyrics, his pacing and everything he sings is so purposely and perfectly placed.  There is a smooth, driving groove that takes you through the song.  Then throw in the backing vocals on the bridge/chorus that help give it that church-like/choir feel.

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My Sunday Song – “Difference Maker” by Needtobreathe

For My Sunday Song # 164, we are talking about “Difference Maker” by Needtobreathe.  The song was the debut single off their album ‘Rivers in the Wasteland’ from 2014.  The song reached #16 on the Christian charts and might be one of the most powerful song they have ever written lyrically.

The song is best described by Bear Rinehart himself.  I found this on the Newreleasetoday.com website. It is an article written by Kevin Davis when he interviewed Bear about the song.  Bear states the following…

This song is my story of trying to understand my role in God’s plan. We were on tour with a secular artist, Taylor Swift, playing to 20,000 and even 50,000 people per night. We felt like we were doing what we were supposed to be doing. Despite our efforts, I didn’t feel like we were having the impact we are called to have.

I think God was asking us at this time, “What are you doing this for? Are you doing it for Me?” And, I think that’s where this song was birthed. That confusion is almost a good thing. The bridge says “I am on the fence about nearly everything I’ve seen.” I meant that in how the whole band was going through a “we surrender to God” kind of way.

We don’t need to be concerned about what happens after we’ve given up this gift we have to God. That was really powerful for us. We had ambition and let that take too much of a priority in things that led us down a road that wasn’t good. I think that in trying to re-prioritize, God wants us to sacrifice those things, those idols in our lives. Some idols for us were wondering what the outcome was going to be, that we had the upper hand or maybe we were the best band out there, or we thought we were the most clever at it.

I feel like the beginning of the song is us asking ourselves are we really difference makers. How valuable are we, really? Towards the end of the song it comes around that God makes us a part of what He does, which is so crazy. It starts with us realizing that we don’t get to make the rules. We don’t control it, and we don’t get to say what the timing is. It’s not because of our talents. He doesn’t need that. He needs our willing hearts.

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September Purchases – Vinyl & CDs

I realized I have been making a lot of purchases and yet not everything makes its way on to the site.  I figured I would do a wrap up each month of all my purchasing I have made even if they made it on the site during the month or even might make it on to the site down the road.

This month I ended up at a pop up sale by Noble Records at Cafe Moka over in the Waverly shopping complex in Charlotte, NC.  He does these every couple months and when I get to go, I always score some great releases.  However, there probably won’t be any more pop ups for a while as Noble Records is finally opening a brick & mortar store in October and I couldn’t be happier.  Another place to go hangout and search for records whenever I want.  This trip was no different.  Major scores.

First up is The Goo Goo Dolls classic album, ‘Dizzy Up the Girl’.  It is hard to find albums from around this time and I found this one and more…

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And if that wasn’t cool enough, I found a 2LP Yellow Vinyl limited edition of Third Eye Blind’s album ‘Third Eye Blind’.  It would have fit in nicely with my Turntables & Vinyl Post on Colored Vinyl a few weeks back.

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My Sunday Song – “The Outsiders” by Needtobreathe

For My Sunday Song #163, we are going to dive in to the title track from their 2009 album, ‘The Outsiders’.  The opening track to an album that went on to win a Dove Award for Rock/Contemporary Album of the Year.  At this point in their career, this was the best effort.

The song is about how the band feels with their place in the music industry.  Being from a small town in South Carolina with a very small music scene, the band never quite felt like they were fully accepted in to the music industry.  They feel like they are outsiders in a business they have been in for about 10 years at this point.  With that feeling of being an outsider also allows for a freedom.  A freedom to do whatever they want creatively and musically.  That freedom has led to some amazing songs (this one included).

The song opens with Bo picking on a banjo, then Bear comes in singing then some hand clapping and some good foot stomping beats.  The country style opening lends its way to a rock song with some southern flair which is something they do best.  They keep that Americana, folk feel in their sound and turn the song into an anthem for a whole generation of people that feel they are outsiders in whatever group they are in.  It is a rally to embrace it and accept it and take advantage of it at the same time.  Ironically, their fan club is actually called “The Insiders”.

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Needtobreathe – The Albums Ranked Worst to First

Back in 2006, my brother told me I had to listen to this album called ‘Daylights’ by the band Needtobreathe. I had never heard of them and I trust my brothers opinion since he did bring me in to the Kiss world when I was like 6.  He said they were a Christian Rock band and they were amazing.  Well, he was sort of right.  They were awesome, but they aren’t just a Christian rock band.  They are a rock band who happens to be Christian and a lot of their views are in their music, but they aren’t bible thumping.  They are telling honest stories that will hopefully impact you in some way.

And impact me they have.  Their music is what I go to when I need inspiration, I need to feel better or I just need some good roots rock music sometimes with a Southern Rock flair.  For me, it is all good and there is no “Worst Album”.  After 6 studio albums, 2 live albums and numerous E.P.’s, they are still one of my all-time favorite bands out there and I hope they continue for years to come.   The band is as follows:

  • Bear Rinehart
  • Bo Rinehart
  • Seth Bolt
  • Josh Lovelace

I am keeping this list to just the 6 studio albums and let this be your gateway in to the band.  Remember, these are in order of my least favorite to my very favorite and that might not be your order, but that is fine.  It is only my opinion.  So be kind. And here we go…Needtobreathe!!

WORST – THE HEAT (2007):

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My Sunday Song – “Washed by the Water” by Needtobreathe

For My Sunday Song #162, we are going to discuss “Washed by the Water” by Needtobreathe.  The song is off their 2007 album ‘The Heat’ and in 2009 it won the GMA Dove Award for Rock/Contemporary Recorded Song of the Year.

The story of the song is about an incident that happened to their dad at their church.  Their father was the preacher and apparently some gossip went around and things were said about him and his wife that in the end turned out to all be false. Their father held his ground and kept his integrity in tack during the whole process.  Bear and Bo were so impressed by their dad that it inspired this song.  It goes to show you that your kids are always watching you and they see how you act and that can be really impactful.

The song has this whole church, gospel vibe to it with the organ and keyboards.  At the same time, there is southern rock feel to the song.  I love that church vibe as it really emphasizes the story.  And let’s talk about the lyrics.  There aren’t a lot, but what is there is powerful.  The title alone of “Washed by the Water” is fantastic, but it is the following lines are the most impactful to me…

Even when Earth crumbles under my feet
Even when ones I love turn around and crucify me
I won’t never ever let you down
I won’t fall
I won’t fall
I won’t fall as long as you’re around me

Their dad showed them the importance of faith and standing up for what you believe no matter what the devil throws at you and it sounds like he threw a lot at them.  We are defined by our choices and our actions, pretty impressive in my book.

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Tuesday’s Memes – Needtobreathe

Since we started the Needtobreathe series with the next 10 songs on My Sunday Song posts, why not celebrate the band in a collection of memes.  Needtobreathe is one of my all time favorite bands, right up there with Kiss and Def Leppard so yes, they need a Meme collection.  I hadn’t done one before because I didn’t think they would have many since they aren’t that popular like the other bands mentioned…I was wrong.  I hope you enjoy even though you might not get them all which is okay.

Am I a fan…YES…

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My Sunday Song – “Cops” by Needtobreathe

 

For My Sunday Song #161, we are now taking over with the next 10 songs coming from one of my favorite bands Needtobreathe. A rock band with a Southern Rock sound, folk, Americana, gospel all with a Christian background and some of the best songs I have ever heard.  I usually try to stick with the non-singles, but as I want more people to know this band, I won’t always stick with that philosophy…although this song is just that.  The song this week is called “Cops” and it is a B-Side for the song “Keep Your Eyes Open”. The song is also a bonus track on the LP version of the album ‘The Reckoning’ from 2011.  Yes, the LP has the bonus tracks!!

The song is one of the bands heaviest songs and completely rocks out.  The reason for that is the subject matter of the song. Needtobreathe has always been labeled a Christian band, but they are not.  They are a rock band that has a Christian upbringing and that subject matter bleeds in to the music from time to time.  But that is not their focus.  They don’t deny they are Christians, they just want to play music and have a good time…nothing wrong with that.

The song is about the Christian people that are trying to tie the band down as a Christian band.  The constant opinions about how they are disappointing God when they don’t sing about him and they should be out there spreading the word.  Sorry, they are a Rock band first and they are not apologizing for that.  The band likens this pressure to being chased by “Cops”…so there you have it.  I find it funny how Christians are supposed to be holier than thou, but yet they are the first to cast the stone and point the finger when they should be looking in to that mirror themselves.  Another problem I have with religion although I am a Christian, their hypocrisy is sickening at times.  Soapbox, getting down now.

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Wilder Woods – ‘Wilder Woods’ – Album Review

Bear Rinehart is lead singer of the band Needtobreathe and if you follow my site at all you know I am a huge fan of that band.  When I heard Bear was doing a solo project I was excited to see what different direction he might take.  His first solo project definitely explores a different sound and style then his main job.

The name he chose is Wilder Woods which happens to be the names of his two kids, Wilder and Woods Rinehart.  I think it is interesting he didn’t even use his own name on the project as he seems to want to keep it completely separate from Needtobreathe.

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The album is a pure R&B and Soul album which is far from the Americana, Folk, souther rock sound of his other band. The opening track, “Light Shine In”, might the one song that sounds most like Needtobreathe  with a little more of a rock edge and the track “What Gives You The Right” might have fit nicely on their album ‘Hard Love’ with its energy and alt-pop sound.

“Sure Ain’t” is classic R&B and one of the best songs on the album. He poors his heart and soul in to the vocals and there is this magical groove to pull you in.  This is followed by ballad “Someday Soon” sees Bear go soulful and gives us his most heartfelt vocals.

Another R&B track is “Supply & Demand” where Bear is trying to woo his woman into a little more horizontal part of the relationship.  It has a throwback sound and it is enjoyment for your ears.

“Electric Woman” might be the best song on the album with a catchy ass groove and its sultry vocal approach and seems to be another love song to his wife.  And the cool thing is she is in the video with him.

Speaking of his wife, it takes balls to tell your wife that she is wrong and he does just that with “Mary, You’re Wrong” to start off Side 2.  If she thinks he is going to leave her, she is mistaken as he has no desire and that is there for the long haul.  “Feel” is straight out of the 70’s R&B era with the female backing vocals and the total sonics of the song.

“Hillside House” is a really slow song that seems real personal to him and I think it is another love letter to his wife who seems to be his muse for most of this album…which is really cool to see that she still pulls those feelings out of him after so many years of marriage.

The last track, “Religion”, is very church-like in its approach and you can hear his Christian upbringing in the church flow through even though it is a song that is talking about his struggles with religion.  It is a little sad and the acoustic feel to the song keeps the voice as the highlight and lets you focus on the words.

It ain’t Needtobreathe and thankfully so as a solo album should be different.  His first solo effort is a strong statement that he has a lot more to offer.  There is a swagger and confidence in the style and his vocal delivery. I love the 70’s R&B vibes, the grooves and the soul that his heart is pouring out in his music and his lyrics.  He made a modern R&B album that plays well today probably as well as it would have played in the 70’s.  He has captured a sound that will hopefully resonate with everyone, young and old.  My only complaint is the 2nd Side is a little weaker than the first, outside of that there are no other complaints.  I would rate the album a 4.0 out of 5.0 Stars.

Give it a try and let me know what you think.  Thanks for stopping by.

Turntables & Vinyl #22 – The Live Albums

One way to tell how good a band really is is to see them live.  If you can’t do that, then it is to listen to one of their live albums.  If they can capture what they have done in the studio and bring it to the stage or even take it up a notch, then you have a solid band.  Growing up, I was never in to live albums.  It was all studio albums for me.  One day, that changed and live albums became the thing.

Now, I tend to be gravitating to the live albums and trying the get them on vinyl or even CD if that is all I can get.  I figured we would go through what Live albums I have in my collection, then with the ones I am trying to get, my Top 5 Favorites and lastly let you weigh in on which ones I have to get my hands on as I am sure there are some I am not aware are great and I should go grab.

We will kick it off with the Hottest Band in the Land…KISS!!  It was the Kiss Alive albums that did it for me.  These things are great.  I have 4 of them…Kiss Alive!,  Kiss Alive II, Kiss Alive III and Kiss Unplugged.  They did get original with their names as you can tell.

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But that is not all, I also have a ton of Kiss Bootlegs as you have seen through my Kiss Bootleg Series…

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