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PAMELAVELDERRAIN Indie & Gospel Reviewer
My musical tastes are as eclectic as my shoe collection. I work with a lot of indie talent and tend to favor grooving to them.

Where It Begins - Karen Cobb
Where It Begins - Karen Cobb
Where It Begins is another great indie project. This isn't a "Christian" project. It's a great musical project by a Christian lady; Karen Cobb. She does a few cover songs on her CD but there's plenty of original material. Her track, "Issues" is one groovy dance number. "It's All About Me" is one of those songs that lyrically makes so much sense. Included in this project is her arrangement of "His Eye is On the Sparrow". I enjoy her music because it's positive and creates an infectious energy as a result. While it hasn't been released to the public, yet, you can find it on www.KarenCobb.com
Reflection of Something - Todd Agnew
Reflection of Something - Todd Agnew
By peeking at my iTunes library, one could gather quite a bit of knowledge about me. I love the blues, R&B, and Urban music which is why I work in the industry. So, finding Todd Agnew's Reflection of Something as a "most played" selection would surprise many of my readers and peers. I listen to Agnew because each track is diverse. His style is eclectic and his sound is addicting. The track, "New Name" is my fave, by far. Unlike the smooth groove of R&B, Agnew's voice is gruff and at times monotone. But, because it's so different, it just really sticks with just like Norah Jones appeals to me.
My Kind of Livin' - Craig Morgan
My Kind of Livin' - Craig Morgan
My Kind of Livin' is another project not held up as "Christian" but is a hit country project and done by a great man of faith. "That's What I Love About Sundays" always makes me think back to growing up in the South. "Ain't The Way That I Wanna Go Out" is another one of my favorites Morgan wrote which talks about remembering the good in people even when they're not always so good. His lyrics touch the memories of my heart. His songs are all wholesome — there's no "tear in my beer" kinda stuff. It's a positive country project done by a nice Christian man.
Hero - Kirk Franklin
Hero - Kirk Franklin
Hero was the surprise of the year for me. I expected to hear some great R&B worship. But, this project was... WOW! What I hear each time I listen to it is a project busting with rhythms and lyrics even my urban label peers love to groove to and respect. I consider it an outreach project of an unprecedented nature. He is reaching out to Christians and non-Christians, offering an urban alternative which provides positive lyrics and subtle examples of how to live life as a real person walking out your faith, rediscovering your faith, or finding faith.
Sacred Heart - Mickeal McCool
#1. Sacred Heart - Mickeal McCool
Sacred Heart is a worship project inspired by a little trip to Paris and Deuteronomy 10:1-5,8. Mickeal McCool, an indie artist and worship leader, combines modern worship rhythms and soulful gospel melodies in Sacred Heart. This project is contemporary enough to get you tapping your feet and soulful enough to have you bopping your head back and forth with a little shoulder action thrown in there from time to time. Check out "Glory Hallelujah" and a new arrangement of "The Old Rugged Cross" for the latter. Throughout this project, you'll hear the fullness of the University of California Irvine Gospel Choir.

Mickeal McCool is a rare breed of songwriter, producer, singer and musician. God has gifted him in each of those areas. As an independent artist and publisher, he has found many challenges in getting his music to the masses. He doesn't simply want everyone to hear his music for his own personal recognition, McCool, who has been a worship leader for over 10 years, wants to share with other the blessings God has given him to help bring them closer to the throne of God. His passion is helping others see our Father through his music. I have seen firsthand how the "masses" have been blessed by his music. Personally, his music has touched the hearts of me and my family. Every time I listen to Sacred Heart, I hear more of God's message in each song.

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