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481. The Praise Album – The Maranatha Singers

THE PRAISE ALBUM (1974)

The Maranatha Singers

I have often wondered if the people behind the initial Praise album had any idea what this one album would eventually foist upon the world of Christian Music. From very humble and simple plans have come the unstoppable force that is “Worship Music.” Growing frustrated with supposed “outdated” hymns from previous generations the Church of the Jesus Music scene, Calvary Chapel of Costa Mesa, California began writing, performing and eventually recording new songs of worship which became known as “choruses.”

The name came from the fact that the majority of songs did not possess a verse/chorus structure most hymns (and most music) was known for, but rather a single, memorable chorus (or hook) that would be repeated over and over. Initially the songs were straight Scripture, or at least reworkings of popular Psalms.

One must doubt that those behind this wonderful little record had any idea what a bulwark would follow this release. I’m not sure if they still make Maranatha Praise Albums or what number they may be one, but Number One, simply called “The Praise Album” remains of the finest ever. Nearly every song has remained a favorite and there are more than a handful of classics included. Heavenly Father, Seek Ye First, Open Our Eyes and Thy Loving Kindness have never gone out of favor, and this, initial release, has never been duplicated.

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  1. Dave H
    October 20, 2010 at 3:41 am

    It took guts to include this one this type of list. But it totally makes sense. Every Christian I knew that had any CCM back in the day had this one perched right next to Keaggy, Clark, Norman, 2nd Chapter and all the others.

  2. Greenchili
    March 8, 2011 at 8:00 am

    Praise Albums – Marantha Singers, modern “worship music”.. meh..

    Daring to include indeed!

  3. Liz
    March 28, 2011 at 11:39 pm

    Wow – this really takes me back to the time I first got saved. Nice! Love that you included it!

  4. Greenchili
    May 7, 2011 at 6:50 am

    OK.. Finally got round to listening to this. I dont know if I was just in a weird state of mind, mellow state of mind, or what. But I actually liked it. 😮

    Had a neighbor during my youth that was into the whole praise album series and boy I couldnt stand the stuff.. Must be an age thing. 🙂

  5. July 25, 2011 at 10:34 pm

    It was my foundation and introduction to contemporary praise…God bless “Pastor Chuck” and all the “Maranatha Singers”!

  6. uncle Chuck
    May 6, 2012 at 6:52 am

    Please…they did this not out of altruism or because they wanted to serve the church. They did it as a business move. They divested themselves of all the dead weight that the “rock bands” meant to them. If they started to record praise music, they could simply hire them as they needed them…and make money.

  7. February 5, 2014 at 10:44 pm

    With The Praise Album, context is everything. The songs are simple and the arrangements sparse, however, it is one of the most significant Christian albums of all time. I’m glad to see it included in the 500 best. If it were “Most Significant” it would be in my top 10.

  8. February 22, 2014 at 4:33 am

    vivo buscando esta musica, especialmente la de country maranatha.

  9. Greg Whitehead
    February 1, 2016 at 10:55 am

    Great revue, it is a GEM

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