The Jesus Music — a documentary tracing the “uplifting and untold story” of the roots of contemporary Christian music through where the genre is today — will arrive in theaters on October 1st via Lionsgate. The film features some of the biggest names in the genre, including Amy Grant, Kirk Franklin, Michael W. Smith, TobyMac and Lauren Daigle.
“A lot of hymns are ‘close your eyes singing to God,” Grant says in a new trailer for the documentary. “I wanted to sing with my eyes wide open, singing to each other.”
The clip features footage of the civil unrest in the Sixties and how the counterculture movement helped spawn the genre. “You want to find a loving way to have these conversations,” Franklin says.
As Christian music evolved, new perspectives were added to the mix. “There was so much great music going on, everything felt so fresh and new,” Grant says.
The transition to more contemporary sounds, however, appears to have not always been a smooth one, as the trailer implies. “It was so much drama in the church,” Franklin says.
The artists also discuss how the music changed them, attributing it to being everything from a lifeline, to being the most powerful language in the world. “It became part of the fabric of who I was,” Franklin says.
“And you can do all of that in three-and-a-half minutes,” Michael W. Smith adds.
Directed by the Erwin Brothers, the documentary also features interviews with Michael Tait, DC Talk, Chris Tomlin, John L. Cooper, CeCe Winans, Steven Curtis Chapman, and more artists.