Song of the Day: Johnny Q. Public - Body Be

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Welcome to the 1990s, the decade of alternative rock, grunge, flannel, and a time when MTV still played music videos. While the Christian music scene had tons of alternative rock bands, few were as effective as Springfield, Missouri’s Johnny Q. Public. The band found the right combination of distortion, melody, noise, and big rock hooks (but not too big) to make a huge impact on the music scene.

They released two albums, 1995’s Extra-Ordinary (for Gotee Records) and 2000’s Welcome to Earth, which was also on Gotee but licensed to the mainstream Roadrunner Records. Somewhat ironically, their sophomore album made less of an impact than their excellent debut, although both albums were chock full of riffs, hooks, and displays of youthful energy.

Added to that energetic combination were lyrics that showed a deeper understanding of Christian theology than most, and you had a real package that was truly interesting and impactful. From songs about Aaron, the angry “Preacher’s Kid”, to this one about the need for the wider body of Christ, JQP showed that music could be both ‘Christian’ and ‘rock’ without compromising either.

There’s a nice little Easter egg in the middle of the song too. While I recognized it the first time I heard it, I had only known it as being from the Camper Van Beethoven song “Pictures of Matchstick Men,” not knowing that even that version was a cover of the Status Quo classic.

Some members were also in the band Flick, and their collective credits (especially those of guitarist Oran Thornton) number in the hundreds. Drummer Nate McCorkle was also in Tooth & Nail’s Morella’s Forest.

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