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Ben Forrest
Unplugged - Eric Clapton Unplugged (1992) - Eric Clapton
This is one of the albums that made MTV's "Unplugged" series one of the most sought after gigs in the biz. It also helped introduce Clapton to a whole new legion of fans. I was one of them. I came late to the table (I picked up the album in the summer of '99), but this is one of those timeless albums that will have value even 50 years from now. Never have I been so affected (musically) by a collection of music. If you're an acoustic guitar player, there's no better album to have, and no better player to emulate than Eric Clapton.
Winning the Next Generation - Brownsville Worship Winning the Next Generation (1999) - Brownsville Worship
This album was a gift, and one of those discs that will probably only mean something to me. I received it during the time when God and I were just getting to know each other in deep ways. I listened to it every day for about 18 months, and it has touched my life immeasurably.
If I Left the Zoo - Jars of Clay If I Left the Zoo (1999) - Jars of Clay
I was about ready to give up on Jars after their sophomore effort, Much Afraid. This album made me a fan again. Though they adopted a sound very similar to the Counting Crows, I was pleased to see that the guys had grown both musically and spiritually since I'd checked in on them last. The new sound takes some getting used to, but will take you to places you've never been before with God. “I'm Alright” is a modern-day classic.
August and Everything After - Counting Crows August and Everything After (1993) - Counting Crows
I have almost every Crows album ever made, and it's hard to chose between them. But August has an appeal that Recovering the Satellites and This Desert Life don't. Though bolstered by radio-friendly hits "Mr. Jones," "Rain King" and "A Murder of One," this disc has a number of great songs you've never heard of. "Omaha," "Perfect Blue Buildings" and "Sullivan Street" have an honesty and rootsy feel that make them irresistible. This is an album that you can listen to in one sitting, and be as entertained as you would be watching "Celebrity Boxing" on Fox.
My Own Prison - Creed My Own Prison (1997) - Creed
This is the album that started it all for Creed. Straight from their garage and into the spotlight, this brand of cerebral, emotional rock is something the world hadn't seen in a long time. Lead singer Scott Stapp writes with stark honesty, vivid detail, and with no regard for what would get his band into the top 40. Marred only by Stapp's cursing at the end of "What's This Life For," this was one of the best rock albums of the 90s.

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