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"What The Eff?" Wednesday: Bad Church Sangin’

30 July 2008 10 Comments

Have you ever noticed how no one wants to say anything bad about a singer if they’re singing about God? Well, I refuse follow that rule. Don’t get me wrong – acting crazy on some God stuff is one of our constitutional rights, and I support everyone’s freedom of choice in worship. But since I don’t belong to any particular religious faith and I could only ever believe in a higher power that allows me to think critically about the nonsense that I come across, I put together this “What The Eff?”-worthy collection of really bad church sangin’. Don’t feel like a sinner, just say that Thembi made you do it.

What’s crazy about this video is that Sister Jackson is giving me flashbacks to Mother Bethel Church in the late ’80’s back when my dad used to make us go to service.

They’ll let anyone who loves the lord up there and some fool always claps to encourage it. This is exactly why people go on Showtime at The Apollo‘s “Amateur Night” and sing gospel – no one is going to boo even it’s called for. I have to give a thumbs down to the creation of sloppy vibrato voice gymnastics for the Lord – he does not want that, sister.

The first time I tried to just “sit in” at a gospel choir practice, the director said “oh no, you in it…everyone’s in it!”. Yet, this is an example of why letting everyone join in is a bad idea.


It’s absolutely o-mazing that this dude came to church in a sweatshirt, let alone that he decided to ad-lib one of the most well-known songs in American history like he was improving it. Is he mentally ill? On drugs? Either way, I’m probably going to hell for even posting this.

Just when I thought that bad church singing was a black folks’ disease, along come Mark Fox and his alter-ego Lil’ Markie.

You see, Lil’ Markie was originally the voice of an aborted baby in some pro-life propaganda, and now Mark Fox decides to conjure him up anytime he’d like to further stress the point that God is love. I’ve never been much of a fan of the eunuch voice range thing, but what I’m really puzzled by is how much this dude looks like the guy who stole Pee Wee’s bike in Pee Wee’s Big Adventure.

As mad as I am that Dick Clark got to it first, this clip of a caller to a religious show trying to sing and subsequently cracking up one of its hosts is too funny.

Sorry, Danny. Sounds of Blackness will not be calling you to come in for an audition.

Now that I’ve made myself out to be a heathen, I’ll admit that of course there are a bunch of gospel songs that I like when sung properly. In fact, during a particularly misguided phase I was even part of a gospel choir! But to be perfectly honest there is only one church song that gets me on my feet every single time. Philadelphia stand up!

10 Comments »

  • NaturallyAlise said:

    On the “Amen” song why does everybody know and love the lead singer’s adlib… it is the greatest!

  • Phi Sister said:

    OMGoodness. Little Markie needs to sit down with that. I honestly believe there are too many people willing to pay to see foolishness. Shame that it was in Miami-my neck of the woods too.

    Poor sister Jackson, she did try.
    Lil Ray Ray in the sweatshirt? I think he is a lil touched in the head.

    Thanks for the “Amen” I knew right when I started it what it was a let out a scream. Highlight of my day.

  • Qucifer said:

    Sister Jackson: BWahahahahhahahah Jesuuuuss, Jeeessus INDEED Homes…Sit Down Sister, Sit Down!

    Oh-maizing Grace never everevre gets old to me

    Fatboy just scares me… you KNOW he uses that voice with his wife, when he asks her to diaper him

    *tears running down my face* He broke me up too

  • Chuck Nwokocha said:

    My stomach hurts right now. I’m somewhere between asphyxiating from a lack of oxygen for laughing so hard and being struck by lightning.

    However, I have no remorse for my laughter. Apparently, self-awareness is seriously lacking from all these people.

    The people who got up in church – there are alot of people who let them down: from their friends and family, the pastor, choir directors, deacons and deaconesses – pretty much anyone who allowed them to continue down that path. Shame on them for allowing that.
    – my two cents

  • Anonymous said:

    I wish Biggie were a live and that man were dead, so call me a fuckin heathen if that’s what it makes me

  • Julian said:

    You just took me back to Metropolitan AME with that first video. And I hate it.

  • jazzfan360 said:

    Comments made while watching videos…

    The sister got problems. Sloppy vibrato does not even BEGIN.

    OMG OMG OMG :55 into “Omazing Grace” when he folds his arms LMAO LMAO. Dying.

    WHAT IS THIS LITTLE MARKIE BUSINESS?! OMG! OH MY GOD! What IS this! It’s like Bobby Generic went gay…and INSANE! Also, Mark’s pants are crackin me UP. That cheesy disco arrangement is pretty sweet, I gotta say.

    That fourth vid…1:08 when he goes silent for a minute, then starts squealing. Man, that killed.

    You are a savvy broad. Smart thinkin to put somethin classic and good at the end, ’cause folks would definitely be in the mood to appreciate some pleasant sounds. Vanessa Bell Armstrong put her foot ALL up in that jam!

  • nanc said:

    oh, god, too much laughter for the morning. these clips work in perfect harmony together….

    “In fact, during a particularly misguided phase I was even part of a gospel choir!”

    LOL.

  • MsLindiwe said:

    Thembi, this post had me alternately howling laughing and unable to breathe. How in the world did you find this!? Anyway, you got me in trouble with my churchier friends, who now say I’m going to hell along with you…

  • Siditty said:

    OMG How did you get videotape of my family’s church and clips of the family reunion. I know they are singing songs about the Lord, but seriously, they need to be called out.

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