vatican music


Once again I have been enlightened.  And a surprised enlightened. And by the Vatican. And, no, it has nothing to do with religion.

The dudes in the Pope’s Playhouse (and I use the term ‘dude’ loosely) have a Vatican’s Playlist on MySpace.


Beyond the fact someone at the Vatican was cool enough to create a playlist … they also have a MySpace page <how contemporary is that … I now have a fairly odd image of the Pope updating his facebook page after cruising around in his little cart>.

The Vatican be rockin’ the house down.

Apparently their music experts are the theological producer of Alma Mater, Father Giulio Neroni, and Vincent Messina, producer of Alma Mater. (I am a little unclear what a theological producer is versus a normal producer but hey  … it’s the Vatican  … redundant staffing is their salary issue not mine). I was slightly disappointed they didn’t list Father Guido Sarducci … but whatever.

Anyway.  Hold on for some surprises as you look at their MySpace playlist:

–          Advocata Nostra  by Music From The Vatican
Alma Mater Featuring the Voice of Pope Benedict XVI

–          Uprising by MUSE <note … how cool is this choice?>
The Resistance

–          Causa Nostrae Laeti by Music From The Vatican

Alma Mater Featuring the Voice of Pope Benedict XVI

–          Il mare mi salva by Rosso Malpelo
RossoMalpelo “23 – con il pelo e con il vizio”.

–          Mozart -Don-Giovanni  by Ingrooves Symphony
A Beginners Guide To Classical Mozart 2

–          He Doesn’t Know by Fleet Foxes <wow … another excellent quite random choice>
Fleet Foxes

–          Changes by 2pac
2Pac Greatest Hits

–          Regina Coeli  by Music From The Vatican

Alma Mater Featuring the Voice of Pope Benedict XVI

Yeah. Just want to be clear.

That was 2pac at number 7.

That means almost a dozen years after its release … Tupac Shakur’s 1998 hit “Changes” has been selected by the Vatican as one of the ‘songs of choice’ on their MySpace playlist. Maybe he is easier for them to accept now that he is dead.  Must be a soul & forgiveness thing. <note … another image I now have … a bunch of priests wearing a “thug” tshirt underneath their cassock>.

(but really … be serious … I wanted to type WT@ … yeah … but .. well … I am close enough to hell as it is)

Apparently this is the first time the Catholic Church has officially recognized the work of any popular American artist. With it, the song joins the ranks of works such as “Don Giovanni” by Mozart, the Vatican’s own “Advocata Nostra,” featuring the voice of Pope Benedict XVI, and “After The Rain,” by Dame Shirley Bassey (pretty good company for 2pac).

“The genres are very different from each other, but all these artists share the aim to reach the heart of good minded people,” the Vatican explained on its official MySpace Music page.

And the Vatican doesn’t stop their ‘hipness’ with their myspace playlist. They even have selected their 10 “Commandment” albums.

No kidding (although they don’t command you to buy them or go to hell or anything really cool like that).

Give these guys a couple of glasses of wine and they are moonwalkin’ (you can’t see because of their ‘cassocks’ but they have it down) to Michael Jackson and sitting in the dark meditating to Us & Them from Pink Floyd.

Call it the Vatican’s 10 commandments for good listening. The Holy See’s newspaper, L’Osservatore Romano, published a list of its favorite albums, and the results are …. well  … interesting to say the least. But, hey, if they had Tupac on their myspace list why not some psychedelic rock on their top ten albums.

Below are the records featured in what the newspaper calls “a semi-serious guide on the road to good music”:

Michael Jackson: Thriller

The King of Pop’s sixth album became – and currently remains – the best-selling album of all time, with estimated sales between 57-110 million copies worldwide. The album features the hits Billie Jean, Beat It and the title track Thriller.

Oasis: (What’s the Story) Morning Glory?

The second album by British rock group Oasis was hugely successful upon its release in 1995, and is the third biggest-selling album in UK chart history.

Pink Floyd: The Dark Side of the Moon

Pink Floyd’s 1973 release The Dark Side of the Moon is one of the biggest selling albums of all time. The record features the singles Money and Us and Them and has sold roughly 45 million copies.

Santana: Supernatural

Santana’s album Supernatural was released to great acclaim in 1999 and won a haul of Grammys, including Album of the Year. Featuring guest artists such as Eric Clapton, Eagle-Eye Cherry, Lauryn Hill, and Rob Thomas, Supernatural featured the hit singles Maria Maria and Smooth.

The Beatles: Revolver

The Beatles released Revolver in 1966 and the album was a massive success throughout the world. The seventh album from the Fab Four includes the songs Eleanor Rigby and Yellow Submarine.

Fleetwood Mac: Rumours

The British-American group’s hugely successful album was released in 1977 and has sold over 40 million copies worldwide. Rumours includes the hit singles Go Your Own Way, Don’t Stop and Dreams.

Paul Simon: Graceland

Following his split from musical partner Art Garfunkel in 1979, Paul Simon released the solo album Graceland in 1986. Graceland was massively successful, and spawned the hit songs You Can Call Me Al and Graceland.

U2: Achtung Baby

U2’s seventh studio album was released in 1991 and is one of the band’s most successful releases to date. It includes the songs Even Better Than the Real Thing, One and Mysterious Ways.

David Crosby: If I Could Only Remember My Name

American singer David Crosby’s debut solo album was released in 1971, and features a host of other music stars, including Joni Mitchell and members of the Grateful Dead, Jefferson Airplane, and Santana.

Donald Fagen: The Nightfly

Steely Dan co-founder Donald Fagen released his debut solo album The Nightfly in 1982, and the record was one of the first fully digital recordings of popular music.

There you go.

I will admit.  It typically takes a lot to surprise me but the Vatican has done it. Enlightened me in fact.

The Vatican be raising the roof on the house.

Whoda thunk.


Written by Bruce