Maybe you’ve seen me post the reviews for Derek Webb’s new album, I Was Wrong, I’m Sorry & I Love You. And all you’re thinking is, “Who in the world is Derek Webb?” I’m glad you asked.
Every person has a handful of truly formative people in their lives: friends, family, writers, artists, and musicians. When it comes down to musicians that have influenced me, two names come to mind first: The Beatles and Derek Webb. I don’t need to introduce you to our Liverpudlian friends, but Derek might need a quick bio.
Derek Webb is a folk singer par excellence, meaning he is an agitator at his core. His is geared to speak prophetically into situations that should not be, casting a vision of something better. This resonates with me, because I have often found myself in that same position. Webb connects with me even more, because the target of his criticism is most often Christianity and the Church. Now why would Christians need to be yet another person’s whipping boy? Well, the difference is that Derek is not a detractor of the Church; rather, he places himself right in the center of it and calls for reformation. This is a good and necessary thing for the Church. It is a good thing for me.
Musically, Webb has spanned quite a variety of genres. Starting out with a more traditional Americana sound on his first record, he has dabbled in indie country-rock, 60s psychedelic rock, hip-hop, and now on this record some amalgamation of them all. Really, if I had to say this record reminded me of anyone musically, it reminds me a lot of U2 and late Beatles with hints of Johnny Cash and Woody Guthrie. It’s like the UK went to Nashville…or Nashville went to the UK? I’m not sure. It’s a blast regardless.
Bottom line, if you have any respect for me musically or theologically, give this record a shot. If you like anything on it (which you will), talk to me and I’ll tell you which of Webb’s records to go to next. Trust me on this one. So you don’t know who Derek Webb is? That’s not going to last much longer. Pre-order his new album starting tomorrow (with immediate download) from derekwebb.com. To hear some previews from the record, check out this other review of mine.