Gospel Music Gets No Respect!

I was looking over the other day the list of Grammy winners from the 2008 awards as listed on MSN Music. Where are the Gospel albums? I thought.

Not on the first page. Pop, rock, country, dance, R&B and blues all make it on the first page. Fair enough. Must be right at the top of the second page.

Hmmm... Jazz. Latin pop. Latin Tropical. Latin rock, Latin urban, Mexican/Mexican-American, Banda, Norteno, Tejano. (I have no idea what the last three are.) Native American, Folk, Zydeco (???), Reggae, World Music, Polka!!!

There it is. Wedged between "Polka" and "Compilation Soundtrack Album for Television, Motion Picture or Other Visual Media" are the Gospel catagories. Whew.... Who knew Zydeco was so popular?

In fairness, on the official Grammy site, Gospel catagories were before Latin, after country. So someone cares. Although it is nigh impossible to get a complete list of winners there. You have to search for winners, leave the name blank, select 2007 and "All" catagories. Then Gospel makes it to page 11.

I checked CNN. There we are, back down under Polka. I guess CNN and MSN use the same Associated Press list. Someone at A.P. doesn't like Gospel music.

The winning Polka album, "Come Share the Wine" doesn't appear to have charted, so I can't determine Billboard sales numbers, but it is ranked the 184,011th most popular CD on Amazon, as of July 22. It's easy to see why Jimmy Sturr is America's Polka King.

Surely the top Zydeco record is blowing them away, right? Live! Worldwide by Terrance Simien and the Zydeco Experience is Amazon's #30331. They do blow Polka away!

The next catagory up is Banda. I don't know what it is, but the winner, a chap by the name of El Chapo, looks like a Village People veteran. He's # 150333. Wait a minute, that's going backwards!

The Best Contemporary R&B Gospel Album, Fred Hammond's Free to Worship comes in at #101817. Zydeco is still the bomb!

The Best Traditional Gospel Album, Live: One Last Time by the Clark Sisters is # 22366. Now that is better than the Zydeco Experience and way above El Chapo. Must be a glitch.

A Deeper Level by Israel and New Breed, the Best Pop/Contemporary Gospel Album is #2686! There's no way that's right! I mean, that blows away the Best R&B Album at #4954. (I'm not linking to that title. Sorry, Chaka.)

By the way, Revelation by Third Day is currently Amazon's #260. And that's without the benefit of having been released yet! I guess the Grammy's (and especially the Associated Press) have quite a bit of catching up to do when it comes to having their finger on the pulse of what music people are interested in.

I'm sticking with the Dove Awards. Or I can always just watch American Idol.


  1. TBH I really am quite happy to leave 'gospel' music.


  2. Since I play for our choir as well as the worship team, I listen to and play a lot of Gospel. Besides "Gospel" is catch-all Grammy-ese for "Music that Mentions God."


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