I’ve heard hundreds and thousands of songs throughout the years that I have been involved in church. Lately, there has been an outpour and passion for worship in my spirit. Not every artist has that gift; some are so anointed that you can feel the passion and hunger while they are singing. I thank God for the artists that he has anointed with amazing songs that take us deep into his presence. Worship is essential for every believer to be able to tap into the gates and the throne of heaven. In the next post, I will write about the songs that have impacted the most. Here are ten of the most influential artists in my life; these artists are worshipers, lovers of God’s presence, and you can feel the intensity through their interviews, songs, and example.
- United Pursuit Band.
This by far has been the best and my favorite band for the past five years. The band that God has used to minister to my heart in so many ways. Their songs hit you in the heart and you can feel the devotion, passion, and hunger of the songwriters. The major song that they have that forever marked me was “Set a Fire,” a song that takes me into God’s presence with ease now. It reminds me the importance of having passion for him, and the desperation that it takes to actually feel him next to us.
Housefires are similar to United Pursuit in their sound, and they have songs that set you ablaze with passion. I love how they record their albums by gathering people together and just worshiping live. The setting doesn’t involve an arena or a concert, it is something similar of a living room where people just come together to worship. I remember the song that marked me from them was “Come to the River;” you can feel a huge passion in this song.
- Bethel Music.
If you don’t know Bethel Music, you probably aren’t Christian. This is a band that has grown so much over the last few years. It has quickly become one of the most powerful bands of Christianity, and thousands of churches all over the world play their music in their services. What I love from them is that I can always go on Youtube and they always have new spontaneous songs that haven’t been released yet, but you can feel the presence of God in those worships! Many of their live worship songs are covers from others, but it extends to the point where they add lyrics that they feel in their heart, and it becomes a radical and powerful spontaneous worship experience. One of my favorite songs that I found from Steffany Frizzell, one of the members of Bethel Music, was their version of “Come Away.” It marked me forever.
- Jesus Culture.
Jesus Culture used to be my favorite band when I was starting to grow in God. I’ve had so many experiences with their music that are overwhelming. One of the songs that I recall was “I Want to Know You,” by Chris Quilala, one of their members. I remember playing that song every day on my way to high school, and how it expressed my desire to know Jesus more. Another song was “You are my Passion” by Kim-Walker Smith, as well.
- New Wine.
The band from my church cannot be left out. They have grown so much since when I started in God, and the level of worship and passion that they carry is tremendous. There are no words to describe it! Similar to Bethel Music, they carry spontaneous worship songs on Youtube, and every time a new song is released during any service, an encounter with Jesus breaks out! My favorite song from them has been “I Need an Encounter,” and “Open Heavens,” both of which I felt the presence of God in a powerful way after hearing them the first time.
- Misty Edwards.
A very silent yet powerful artist, Misty Edwards knows just how to enter the gates of heaven with biblical and powerful worship. I love how her music incorporates the Bible, visions, and prophetic words. Not only that, but they are extremely romantic towards him, and only someone that genuinely loves Jesus can actually enjoy her music. My favorite song from her is “Arms Wide Open.” I was worshiping in my closet one day when I had an encounter with God through this song. God took me to that scene where he was at the cross, and I physically saw him being beaten. I was standing right next to him, and I couldn’t stop crying because the power of the cross became so real to me.
- Klaus Kuehn.
I see Klaus Kuehn as the male version of Misty Edwards. His songs are extremely melodic and instrumental, and he is also very intimate with Jesus. He isn’t about loud worship; his worship is soothing and they make you fire for God explode enormously. The song that I recall from him is “Abba Father,” which was one of the songs that carried me through my beginning days with God.
- John Mark McMillan.
John Mark McMillan was recently added to this list, not too many months ago. I heard the song “Heart Won’t Stop,” and I was immediately drawn to his music. Then I began to hear some more, and I started noticing the pattern of passion that was imparted to the songs. Every time I hear “Heart Won’t Stop” I see myself as a little child trying to run away, but a huge hand always comes back to pick me up. It always reminds me that God’s heart will never stop coming after me.
- Kim Walker-Smith.
Her passion is overwhelming and it is evident in her songs. She is also one of the singers of Jesus Culture, but the reason why I had to separate her is because of the power that she brings into her own music. It’s not her own power, but it is the gift that God has bestowed to her for worship. She came out with the two songs that I will never forget, “Still Believe” and “Spirit Break Out.” Our entire church and all of our houses of peace would play those songs continuously during our worship services. When I would hear “Spirit Break Out” I would literally feel myself breaking through the walls and paradigms, eventually entering into God’s presence.
- Phil Whickham.
One of the oddest and perhaps the one that stands out the most, but Phil is also one of my favorites. His songs mainly have a country sound, but I was drawn to his music when I started hearing his live worship albums. My favorite was “You’re Beautiful,” and when I first heard it I felt like I was being taken to different stages in my life. It took me to my childhood, and all the way to my end, and it impacted me drastically.
Do you feel like there are any artists that can top or make it to this list?